We had a feeling that two leaks in one morning hinted at an impending product launch, and Nintendo has proved us right by officially launching the new Wii Mini console.
Just as the leaks portrayed, the new console will launch on December 7th, just in time for Christmas. The bad news is that it’s only going to be making Christmas presents for Canadians – for some reason Nintendo has decided to launch it there to start with, leaving out even its homeland of Japan.
Nevertheless, Nintendo has said the console is a “Christmas exclusive” for Canada, hinting that it will launch in other countries in the New Year.
The new console is aimed at families and casual gamers, and will come in at an impressively low price point of $99 in Canada – hopefully £99 here in the UK, or perhaps even lower. In order to get the price down, Nintendo has ditched internet connectivity and Gamecube support altogether – no on-demand content, no online multiplayer and worst of all, no Mario Kart: Double Dash.
The Mini is also slimmer, lighter and quite different in design – sloped edges and a mottled plastic finish that has a distinctly 80’s look to it. Nintendo explains the move behind the idea behind the new console:
“Wii Mini is designed exclusively to play Wii games. Its family-friendly design has no Internet capabilities and does not play Nintendo GameCube games,” the company states. “It’s a great value for first-time Wii owners who just want to jump in and experience all the great Wii games that helped usher in a revolution in motion-controlled gaming. Wii games are available at a variety of price points for every kind of shopper.”
At the moment it’s unclear whether the console will be launching anywhere else, although the move to launch in Canada first seems to be a way of testing the waters before a global release.
What do you think of the Wii Mini? Would you buy one for yourself?