Wii U price cut in North America, Wind Waker HD hardware bundle announced

Basic model of Nintendo's console to be phased out in the US

Nintendo of America is cutting the price of the Premium Wii U by $50 effective September 20.

European retailers set their own prices for the hardware and have previously introduced a number of price cuts for the console.


Nintendo of America also intends to phase out the Basic Wii U model to offer just the 32GB Premium package. It has detailed two new bundles: one includes a copy of Nintendo Land and the other a copy of the upcoming Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD.

The Wii U in the Wind Waker HD bundle will have the same black gloss aesthetic as the other model available, but will include a GamePad etched with "gold lettering, a gold Hyrule crest and gold symbols from the game", and a digital copy of Hyrule Historia, the Dark Horse published Legend of Zelda lore book.

The Premium Wii U Wind Waker HD hardware bundle will also be available in Europe when the game launches on October 4. GAME is currently listing the hardware bundle for £249.99.

"Obviously we want to drive Wii U momentum," Nintendo of America's Reggie Fils-Aime told Kotaku. "We've been very clear that software is what drives hardware. And we feel very good about the line-up of software for Wii U.

"Taking the added step to improve the value just reinforces our commitment to make sure that Wii U has a strong holiday this year and is set up to be a strong platform into the future."

Fils-Aime admitted Wii U is struggling compared to its predecessor. "All you need to do is look at the numbers," he said. "At this point in time the Wii install base was beginning to approach three million-this is U.S. numbers-and as we sit here today, the Wii U installed base is at about 1.5 million. So clearly the sales pace is different.

"But I will also tell you that the focus on making sure that this holiday-its second holiday-is really strong is actually quite consistent with the way we've always thought about our hardware launches."

Addressing the Basic Wii U package, Fils-Aime said the model "largely sold through in the marketplace... There is not much of that particular configuration [left]. We don't expect there to be much at all come September 20."

Nintendo of American and Europe will also release The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD Limited Edition. It will include a copy of the boxed game featuring an exclusive, double-sided title sheet with Zelda artwork and a Ganondorf figurine.

Nintendo has also announced the 2DS, a new "more affordable" member of the 3DS handheld family. It lacks 3D functionality but is capable of playing 3DS games in 2D, as well as original DS games.