Production of the NES Classic Edition is being brought to a halt. Nintendo is canceling all further shipments of the fast-selling device as they’ve announced that they are discontinuing any support for the highly popular mini-console.
IGN is reporting that Nintendo has issued a statement indicating that production on the device has ceased and the final shipments are going out in April, ending the five month run after the device launched in November of 2016. After that, the console will be no more…
“Throughout April, NOA territories will receive the last shipments of Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition systems for this year. We encourage anyone interested in obtaining this system to check with retail outlets regarding availability. We understand that it has been difficult for many consumers to find a system, and for that we apologize. We have paid close attention to consumer feedback, and we greatly appreciate the incredible level of consumer interest and support for this product.”
IGN tried to clarify if this also applied to shipments of the device in all regions of the world or just North America, but Nintendo didn’t do any further follow-ups.
Additionally, it was reported that on the fiscal report Nintendo noted that they had sold through about 1.5 million SKUs during the quarter it was released. That’s almost as much as the Nintendo Switch, and far more than what the Wii U has done in recent years.
The NES Classic Edition was a basic mini-console that came packed with 30 NES titles for $60. When it was first announced the pre-orders sold out rapidly and it was actually one of the biggest selling devices during the holiday season.
It’s bizarre that Nintendo wouldn’t at least keep a minimum amount of units on the production line to keep making bank on them, but they’re likely more worried about getting people to purchase the Nintendo Switch over buying a mini-version of a 30-year-old console. The last thing they probably wanted was for the NES Classic Edition to cannibalize (in any way) the momentum and sales for the Switch.
I wouldn’t be surprised if we see the Classic Edition pop up once more either during the summer or later on during the holiday season. Nintendo has a habit of creating odd devices and products that print money but they don’t always seem to know how to follow-through with them properly.
Meanwhile, scalpers are going to have a field day selling rare NES Classic Edition units on eBay.
(Main image courtesy of Ron Tiew)