Mario, and Why the Wii Will Still Reign

By  |  Tuesday, September 15, 2009 at 12:19 pm

Super MarioIt’s been rumored lately that Nintendo will cut the Wii’s price from $250 to $200 some time this month. That wouldn’t be a surprising maneuver, as Sony and Microsoft have recently tinkered with their own home console pricing.

But at first, I laughed off the news. Nintendo doesn’t even have a killer app for the holidays, I thought to myself, wondering whether a measly $50 price cut would really help juice the lead between the Wii and its competitors.

Then again, I initially forgot about Mario.

Confession: I’ve had enough of Mario ever since 2007’s Super Mario Galaxy — hailed by critics as nothing short of perfection. In my eyes, Mario 64 was the last game to bring with it a sense of magic, so either I simply grew out of Mario, or Nintendo dropped the ball. Either way, after 20-plus years of playing video games, I approached Galaxy with a “been there, done that” mindset, and the game didn’t sway me.

But I’m in the minority, and sometimes I lose sight of Mario’s enduring popularity. That’s why, when I looked at NPD’s August sales figures, I was shocked to see New Super Mario Bros., a Nintendo DS game that is 3 years old, hanging in 12th place for software sales. And that doesn’t count the number of people who bought a used copy of the game. The Nintendo DS was the top-selling console last month, at 552,900 units, and I’m sure many of those consumers chose New Super Mario Bros. as one of their first purchases.

Here’s the kicker: New Super Mario Bros. Wii is coming out in November. It’s essentially the same side-scrolling, 2D Mario game you’ve been playing for decades, but with up to four players at a time. The idea couldn’t bore me any more, but I know people will lap it up. Pair that with a Wii price cut, and Nintendo’s golden again.

I know, I said 2009 is the Year of the Playstation 3, and I still believe it, in that Sony will hit a major turning point this year. But Nintendo, which has reigned since the Wii debuted in 2006, isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.


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3 Comments For This Post

  1. Steven Fisher Says:

    Does anyone know if there are per-author RSS feeds for Technologizer? I’ve reached the point where I can’t handle a bunch of the writers here.

    Jared, you’re not the only one. But your drooling fanaticism to the PS3 is the straw that broke the camel’s back. And I actually like the PS3, I even own one.

  2. Jared Newman Says:

    Drooling fanaticism? I demand evidence!

    This’ll help:

  3. Shovan Says:

    I hate the wii/mario crap.

    I’d prefer if wii was popular because of Zelda. 😉