NES Classic Edition

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NES Classic Edition
NES Classic Edition with controller
Also known as Nintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System in Europe and Australia
Nintendo Classic Mini: Family Computer in Japan
Developer Nintendo
Manufacturer Nintendo
Type Dedicated console
Release date
  • JP/AUS: November 10, 2016 (2016-11-10)
  • NA/EU: November 11, 2016 (2016-11-11)
  • Relaunch: June 29, 2018 (2018-06-29)
  • Shōnen Jump Edition: July 7, 2018 (2018-07-07)
Retail availability 2016 – current
Introductory price US$59.99
C$79.99
59.95
¥5,980
Discontinued
  • NA: April 13, 2017 (2017-04-13)
  • WW: April 15, 2017 (2017-04-15)
(Original 2016 launch)
Units sold 2.3 million (as of April 28, 2017)
Media Internal flash memory
System-on-chip used Allwinner R16, Quad-Core ARM Cortex-A7
Memory 256 MB of DDR3 RAM
Storage 512 MB NAND Flash TSOP48
Graphics Mali-400 MP
Controller input 2 controller ports
Successor Super NES Classic Edition
Menu of the Nintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System
Menu of the Nintendo Classic Mini: Family Computer

Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition, known as Nintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System in Europe and Australia and Nintendo Classic Mini: Family Computer (Japanese: ニンテンドークラシックミニ ファミリーコンピュータ) in Japan, is a dedicated video game console by Nintendo, which emulates the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). It launched on November 10, 2016 in Australia and Japan, and November 11, 2016 in North America and Europe. Aesthetically, the console is a miniature replica of the NES, and it includes a static library of 30 built-in games from the licensed NES library, supporting save states for all of them.

Nintendo Classic Mini: Family Computer (CLV-101)

Nintendo produced and sold about 2.3 million NES Classic Editions from November 2016 through April 2017, with shipments selling out nearly immediately. In April 2017, Nintendo announced they were discontinuing the product, leading to console confusion on the decision and price gouging for what remaining units there were. Due to the demand of the NES Classic, and the success of the SNES Classic Edition console, Nintendo re-introduced the NES Classic on June 29, 2018.

Hardware[edit]

The NES Classic Edition is a dedicated console for emulating 30 Nintendo Entertainment System games.[1][2] The console is distributed in two variations; one for Japan, featuring the likeness of the original Famicom,[3] and one for the rest of the world, which looks like the original NES. For the non-Japanese variation, all of the games are based on their US release, running at 60 Hz and using the names by which they were released in the United States. The console's user interface supports up to eight languages, but this does not affect the language for the games themselves.

Internally, the console uses an Allwinner R16 system on a chip with four ARM Cortex-A7 central processing cores and an ARM Mali 400 MP2 graphics processing unit. It includes 512 MB of flash storage and 256 MB of DDR3 memory.[4][5]

For video output, the system features an HDMI connection, which puts out 60 Hz video for all games.

The controllers in the international version of the console feature the Wii Nunchuk's connector, which allows the controller to be connected to the Wii Remote for use with Virtual Console games on the Wii and Wii U. Accessories for the Wii such as the Classic Controller may be used with the NES Classic.[6][7][8] The controllers for the Japanese version are hardwired into the console just like in the original Famicom, so they cannot be used in conjunction with the Wii. The Famicom Mini controllers are also proportioned to the size of the console, resulting in them being smaller than their North American or European counterpart. They fit into small holding slots on the side of the console. The Famicom Mini comes with two controllers. The microphone on the Player 2 controller is superficial only and does not work.[9]

The console uses the Linux operating system, running a new Nintendo Entertainment System emulation engine developed by Nintendo European Research & Development (NERD).[10][4] The emulation included limited support for some of the memory management controllers, aka mappers, used in NES cartridges to extend the ability of the console, such as for Super Mario Bros. 3, though not all known mappers were included with the emulation engine.[4] The emulation engine was well-received by critics and was regarded as superior in both visual and audio support when compared to the NES Virtual Console emulation on the Wii U.

A 320-page book called Playing with Power: Nintendo NES Classics, published by Prima Games, was released the same day as the console;[11] the book is a guide to some of the games included on the system. Nintendo of America brought back the Nintendo Power Line as an automated phone hotline from November 11 to 13 as a celebration of the launch of the system.[12]

Included games[edit]

Regardless of the model/region, the microconsole included 30 built-in games in all regions. Games that originally had different titles in the PAL regions now use their respective American monikers, such as Ninja Gaiden (originally Shadow Warriors) and Super C (originally Probotector II: Return of the Evil Forces). From the 30 included titles, 22 are common between all regions, while the eight remaining ones are exclusive to either Japan or North America/PAL region respectively.[13][9]

Common to both regions NA/PAL NES Exclusive JP Famicon Exclusive

Release[edit]

The NES Classic Edition was first released on November 10, 2016 in Japan and Australia,[14] and November 11 in North America and Europe.[15] With the limited supply, these initial shipments sold out almost immediately.[16]

Nintendo produced about 2.3 million NES Classic Editions over the next five months.[17] By April 13, 2017, Nintendo announced it was ceasing production of the unit, with final shipments sent out within the next few days.[18]

Nintendo's decision to stop production of the console was met with criticism due to consumer's lack of awareness of the limited availability of the console, as described below. Following the announcement of the Super NES Classic Edition, which served as a counterpart to the NES Classic Edition but for Super Nintendo Entertainment System titles,[19] Nintendo announced that it would also resume production of the NES Classic Edition in 2018.[20] Nintendo brought renewed shipments of the system on June 29, 2018, with production of the system expected to continue throughout the year.[21][22][23]

Reception[edit]

Aside from criticism regarding the controller cord being too short as well as minor emulation glitches, especially with sound, the NES Classic Edition has been well received.[24][25]

One of many "plug-n-play" consoles on the market, the demand for NES Classic Edition was notably large, with various retailers collectively selling approximately 196,000 units in its first month,[26] remarkably selling out within hours of availability.[27] Nintendo reported 1.5 million units had been sold by the end of 2016.[28] On April 28, 2017, Nintendo revealed that 2.3 million consoles were sold in total.[17]

Despite the positive reception, journalists were confused about Nintendo's decision to discontinue the unit as announced in April 2017. Nintendo did not say at launch that the system was meant to be only a limited run, and its messaging for it seemed to suggest it would be a product with a longer production life. The company clarified, when announcing the discontinuation, that "NES Classic Edition wasn’t intended to be an ongoing, long-term product. However, due to high demand, we did add extra shipments to our original plans."[29] The lack of availability of the unit since launch, with shipments immediately selling out when they reach stores, also suggested Nintendo was not prepared for the demand for the product.[30] Nintendo of America's CEO Reggie Fils-Aimé later stated that "We just didn't anticipate how incredible the response would be", having considered the sales of other similar retro-consoles, but they had to discontinue the unit as "we've got a lot going on right now and we don’t have unlimited resources."[31][32]

According to an April 2017 report by Eurogamer, the discontinuation of the NES Classic was in part to transition the production line to a Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) Classic system designed similarly to the NES Classic but featuring games from the SNES, to be launched in late 2017, though Nintendo did not confirm this information.[33] While journalists agreed an SNES Classic would be a more enticing product and Nintendo would likely be more prepared to produce a larger number of systems, Nintendo's decision with the NES Classic may have influenced consumers to be wary of trying to buy a system produced in low volumes, or give the impression of artificial scarcity with the product as part of a longer-term strategy to keep consumers demanding Nintendo products.[30][34][35] When the Super NES Classic Edition was officially announced in June 2017, Nintendo said it "will produce significantly more units of Super NES Classic Edition than we did of NES Classic Edition" to avoid a similar shortage issue, but reaffirmed that it was not anticipated to be an ongoing product.[19]

Hacking[edit]

Shortly after the NES Classic Edition's release, hackers discovered ways to unofficially add titles to the system's library, as well as enable emulation support for other consoles. Games from various consoles, such as the Nintendo 64 and 32X, have been successfully made to run on the NES Classic Edition.[36][4]

Scalping and bootlegs[edit]

The NES Classic Edition's very limited stock during its original release in 2016 was one of its main criticisms,[37] with some stores receiving fewer than 10 units at a time. This, coupled with the extremely high demand, prompted internet scalpers to buy as many as they could, so they could resell them with extreme price markups. In the US, prices were commonly set between $200 and $500, compared to its launch price of $59.99. The separate controller that could be bought without the console suffered the same fate, often being included with the main unit.[38] The limited supply of NES Classic was compared to the situation around Amiibo shortages, which similarly were offered by Nintendo in limited quantity and led to scalping and high resale prices, frustrating fans.[39][40]

When Nintendo announced it was discontinuing the NES Classic Edition in April 2017, Nintendo enthusiasts and some outlets such as Polygon and The Verge believed that Nintendo planned on a limited release of the NES classic to drive artificial scarcity and increase sales, but which got out of hand with scalpers and secondary sales which have backfired on them.[41][42][43] Nintendo denied these claims, stating that it was limited by its own rate of production with other hardware products, and that "It's definitely not intentional in terms of shorting the market".[44]

Following the April 2017 discontinuation, consumers found that several bootleg versions of the NES Classic Edition appeared on third party auction sites, typically produced by Chinese companies. These bootlegs have been found to be near-identical in hardware and software, which could confuse consumers who were looking to purchase a Classic Edition.[45]

Limited Shōnen Jump Edition[edit]

A limited Shōnen Jump Edition of the Famicom Mini was released only in Japan on July 7, 2018. Celebrating the 50th anniversary of Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump manga magazine, the special edition features 20 Famicom games largely based on Shōnen Jump manga properties, including Dragon Ball, Saint Seiya, and Kinnikuman.[46][47]

This edition of the console includes the following games:

Within two days, over 110,000 units of the Shōnen Jump unit had been sold.[48]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Kickham, Dylan (July 18, 2016). "Nintendo to re-release classic NES 30 years after original system". Entertainment Weekly's EW.com. Retrieved October 17, 2016. 
  2. ^ Russell, Jon (July 14, 2016). "Nintendo is launching a mini version of its iconic NES console with 30 classic games". TechCrunch. Retrieved October 17, 2016. 
  3. ^ Tumbokon, Karen (September 30, 2016). "Nintendo's Famicom Mini Console Is Coming To Japan". International Business Times. Retrieved October 17, 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c d Linneman, John (February 5, 2017). "Nintendo Classic Mini NES review". Eurogamer. Retrieved September 28, 2017. 
  5. ^ Grant, Christopher (November 11, 2016). "What's inside the NES Classic Edition". Polygon. Retrieved September 28, 2017. 
  6. ^ Kamen, Matt (July 14, 2016). "Nintendo unveils the Classic Mini loaded with 30 NES games". Retrieved July 14, 2016. 
  7. ^ Paul, Ian (July 14, 2016). "Nintendo's releasing a miniature NES console packed with 30 classic games". Retrieved July 14, 2016. 
  8. ^ Grant, Christopher (July 14, 2016). "The mini NES Classic controller works with your Wii U Virtual Console games". Polygon. Retrieved August 9, 2016. 
  9. ^ a b "ファミコンが、手のひらサイズで". Retrieved September 30, 2016. 
  10. ^ Vogel, Mitch (August 27, 2016). "NES Classic Edition Will Feature a Brand New Emulator Developed by NERD". Nintendo Life. Retrieved October 4, 2016. 
  11. ^ Humphries, Matthew (July 27, 2016). "Nintendo commissions official NES book to compliment Classic Mini console | Games | Geek.com". @geekdotcom. Retrieved August 9, 2016. 
  12. ^ Schreier, Jason (November 4, 2016). "Nintendo Brings Back The Power Line For A Weekend". Kotaku. Retrieved November 4, 2016. 
  13. ^ Jones, Gary (July 19, 2016). "NES Classic Edition: The final 30 games list revealed as Nintendo talk mini N64". Retrieved August 9, 2016. 
  14. ^ Perez, Angela (July 15, 2016). "Nintendo New NES Release Date & Price in Australia". Retrieved August 8, 2016. 
  15. ^ Perry, Alex (August 8, 2016). "The re-release of the original Nintendo has some amazing new features". Retrieved August 9, 2016. 
  16. ^ "Kansas City shoppers find bargains and long lines on Black Friday". The new version has been out of stock since Nov. 11, when it sold out in a single day. 
  17. ^ a b McAloon, Alissa. "Nintendo sold 2.3 million NES Classic Editions". 
  18. ^ "NES Classic shipments end in Japan and Europe as well - NintendoToday". April 15, 2017. 
  19. ^ a b Schreier, Jason (June 26, 2017). "Nintendo Announces SNES Classic, Which Comes With 21 Stellar Games". Kotaku. Retrieved June 26, 2017. 
  20. ^ Erik Kain. "Nintendo Is Bringing Back The NES Classic Edition For A Very Silly Reason". Forbes.com. Retrieved 2018-06-22. 
  21. ^ Byford, Sam (September 12, 2017). "Nintendo is bringing back the NES Classic". The Verge. Retrieved September 18, 2017. 
  22. ^ Byford, Sam (May 13, 2018). "Nintendo is bringing back the NES Classic on June 29th". The Verge. Retrieved May 13, 2018. 
  23. ^ Kim, Matt (June 29, 2018). "Nintendo NES Classic is Available: Here's Where to Buy One". USGamer. Retrieved June 29, 2018. 
  24. ^ "NES Classic Edition - Game Review". Most of the games sound nearly the same as their NES versions, but devoted fans will notice a few deviations, whether it's the oddly muffled beat of the first-level music in Kid Icarus or the slightly tinnier clangs of a heart counter winding back after a Castlevania level. The games are also based on their Virtual Console versions, so StarTropics renames its yoyo weapon a “star.” 
  25. ^ "Linux On Your NES Classic Edition". Nintendo look as though they may have something of a hit on their hands with their latest console offering. 
  26. ^ "Nintendo NES Classic is Selling Almost 6 Times as Fast as Wii U". The NES Classic sells an impressive 196,000 units in the US in the month of November, significantly outpacing the sales of Nintendo’s eighth generation Wii U console. 
  27. ^ "People Are Selling Nintendo's NES Classic Edition For Hundreds of Dollars". Nintendo’s NES Classic Edition is out today, as in sold out today, as in chances are if you’re just stepping out the door to pick one up, it’s probably too late. 
  28. ^ "NES Classic Edition Surpasses 1.5 Million Units In Global Sales". February 1, 2017. 
  29. ^ Otero, Jose (April 13, 2017). "Nintendo Discontinues the NES Classic Edition". IGN. Retrieved April 25, 2017. 
  30. ^ a b Sarkar, Samit (April 25, 2017). "Nintendo's NES Classic strategy threatens to hurt the rest of its business". Polygon. Retrieved April 25, 2017. 
  31. ^ Peckham, Matt (April 28, 2017). "Nintendo Says it Sold Over 2 Million NES Classics". Time. Retrieved April 28, 2017. 
  32. ^ Bradshaw, Tim; Lewis, Leo (September 9, 2017). "Component bottlenecks hit Nintendo's Switch". Financial Times. Retrieved September 9, 2017. 
  33. ^ Phillips, Tom (April 19, 2017). "Sources: Nintendo to launch SNES mini this year". Eurogamer. Retrieved April 25, 2017. 
  34. ^ Statt, Nick (April 13, 2017). "Nintendo doesn't want your money — it wants your soul". The Verge. Retrieved April 25, 2017. 
  35. ^ Orland, Kyle (May 1, 2017). "Nintendo figured 2.3 million NES Classics was enough (it wasn't)". Ars Technica. Retrieved May 1, 2017. 
  36. ^ Jones, Brad. "Hackers Tweak NES Classic Edition to Play Games From Other Consoles". Digital Trends. Retrieved March 7, 2017. 
  37. ^ Kain, Erik. "It's Time To Give Up On Getting A Mini NES Classic Edition This Christmas". 
  38. ^ Kuchera, Ben (November 17, 2018). "Nintendo could beat NES Classic scalpers in two ways (but probably won't)". Polygon. Retrieved June 22, 2018. 
  39. ^ Crecente, Brian (November 11, 2016). "NES Classic shortages rile fans, line the pockets of scalpers". Polygon. Retrieved June 22, 2018. 
  40. ^ Biggs, Tim (November 16, 2016). "Thousands spurned as Nintendo's Classic Mini NES is sold out everywhere". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved June 22, 2018. 
  41. ^ Grant, Christopher (November 11, 2016). "NES Classic Edition shortages prove Nintendo is either underhanded or incompetent". Polygon. 
  42. ^ Sarkar, Samit (April 25, 2017). "Nintendo's NES Classic strategy threatens to hurt the rest of its business". Polygon. Retrieved June 22, 2018. 
  43. ^ Statt, Nick (April 13, 2017). "Nintendo doesn't want your money — it wants your soul". The Verge. Retrieved June 22, 2018. 
  44. ^ Orland, Kyle (June 22, 2017). "Nintendo: Switch shortages are "definitely not intentional"". Ars Technica. Retrieved June 22, 2018. 
  45. ^ Orland, Kyle (July 12, 2017). "Bootleg NES Classics flood market to fill demand that Nintendo won't". Ars Technica. Retrieved July 12, 2017. 
  46. ^ "Nintendo Makes Famicom Mini Shonen Jump Edition for Magazine's 50th Anniversary - News". Anime News Network. 2018-05-13. Retrieved 2018-06-22. 
  47. ^ Machkovech, Sam (July 12, 2018). "Hands-on with Nintendo's weirdest, and maybe rarest, classic console yet". Ars Technica. Retrieved July 12, 2018. 
  48. ^ Sato (July 16, 2018). "Shonen Jump 50th Anniversary Golden Mini: Famicom Sells 110,000 Units In Two Days". Siliconera. Retrieved July 16, 2018. 

External links[edit]