Nintendo Extends NES Classic Discontinuation Worldwide
Ashley Allen / 3 years ago
After pulling the console from North America and Japan, Nintendo has now confirmed that it is to discontinue the manufacture of its NES Classic mini console in Europe, too, which effectively means that the retro games hardware will no longer be available, worldwide.
The NES Classic – a tiny version of Nintendo’s classic 8-bit, 1980s console – was only launched back in November 2016, and has sold through the roof, though manufactured scarcity meant that the console was frequently out-of-stock, triggering a secondary market which saw the hardware resold on eBay for up to 200% its recommended retail price. The console was later hacked, allowing owners to install their own ROMs on the previously locked hardware.
Nintendo first withdrew the NES Classic from the North American market on 13th April. A spokesperson told IGN:
“Throughout April, NOA [Nintendo of America] 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.”
A day later, the console was discontinued in Japan, where it was known as the Famicom Classic Edition. A translated announcement from Nintendo’s Japanese website (via Polygon) read:
“This product has ended production for now. When production is being resumed, we will tell you on our website.”
Now, today, Nintendo has confirmed the end of the NES Classic in Europe. A Nintendo spokesperson told Eurogamer:
“We can confirm that we are no longer manufacturing the Nintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System. If production resumes in the future, an update will be posted on the official Nintendo website.”
While this does not necessarily mean the end of the NES Classic – the console could well enter production again at a later date – the move to pull it from the market seems rather decisive. Does the NES Classic’s discontinuation mean that Nintendo is set launch a proper Virtual Console for the Switch?