News Article

Wii Mini Generating Little Interest in The UK

Posted by Andy Green

Maybe the cold weather is putting people off...

The Wii Mini emerged as a Canadian exclusive back in December and, relatively speaking, it did reasonably well - shifting 35,700 units between its launch and 31st January.

This lead Nintendo to bring the bizarre little console to other markets - one of which was the UK, where it was released on 22nd March. However, it has been met with a rather lacklustre response, with some retailers reporting little to no interest in the scaled-down system.

One of GAME's flagship stores told TechRadar that demand had been so minimal, it hasn't bothered to stock the console - despite having pre-orders through the website before the launch.

We've pretty much had nothing. None at all.

HMV also said it wasn't stocking the new console, but that it would consider doing so in the future if demand picked up. HMV is in a spot of bother financially, so it's not a huge surprise it isn't taking any risks. The company recently announced it was selling the Wii U Premium Pack with a copy of ZombiU for just £199.99 - a reduction of £140.

Wii Mini offers the player a different design but comes with no internet connectivity. Amazon UK is selling the console for £79.99, which is a decent price, however you can also pick up a fully-fledged Wii with a game for less than £120.

Would you consider picking up a Wii Mini? Maybe you already have? Let us know what you think of the system in the comments section below.

[via techradar.com]

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User Comments (61)

Bulbousaur

#1

Bulbousaur said:

Good, this had no purpose apart from collectors value. I see no good reason why Nintendo would waste manufacturing and shipping costs in making this. Anyone can easily buy a used Wii off eBay for less than £60 which has online and GC support.

DePapier

#3

DePapier said:

I'd like to know how it is possible to judge the future of sales after one day on the market, but it seems clear that Nintendo UK's marketing department needs a makeover.

Undead_terror

#4

Undead_terror said:

I would be surprised if anyone bought one, unless they wanted to keep it as a collectable which would be make more money in the future or didn't know about the no internet and game cube support.

Bliquid

#5

Bliquid said:

I actually like it.
It is a gaming console, you put games in, you play them, period.
No online, no gimmicks of sort.
Make it 50 Euros and i'll buy it, Nintendo.

Gavin_Rozee

#7

Gavin_Rozee said:

@Bliquid, I'd like that as well, if it wasn't for the fact the OS is still designed to have channels filled up with downloadable software, and not being able to play in 480p.

SuperKMx

#8

SuperKMx said:

"Maybe the cold weather is putting people off..." - That'll be it. And the fact that it's terribly overpriced.

baba_944

#10

baba_944 said:

I don't see the point of this like most said. The Wii is already a popular console shifting over 80 million worldwide, so why sell this?

Maskeraid

#11

Maskeraid said:

The funny thing about this is that in a few years, because it was such a failure, this'll become the new gameboy micro. :3

Omega

#12

Omega said:

I would like to have one. It currently costs Euro 99 at Amazon in germany. When it gets a little cheaper, I'll probably grab one.

DePapier

#14

DePapier said:

@Blizzaga I know right!!! And a white Wiimote Plus + Nunchuck bundle is about 60 €/£/$!!!
...Which makes me realize in this context that it actually isn't overpriced.

goldbricks23

#15

goldbricks23 said:

I think Nintendo's marketing department need a complete makeover. I love Nintendo but I can't comprehend what they are thinking at the moment. The launch of the Wii U has been a complete mess, especially with their relative silence on releases for the next couple of months- 3/4 games in March/April aren't enough to hold up a console. And launching a revised Wii onto the market when consumers were already confusing it with the Wii is ridiculous. I really hope they do have some master plan up their sleeve- especially when they begin talking to retailers in the next couple of weeks.

retro_player_22

#16

retro_player_22 said:

I don't get why Nintendo kept butchering the Wii even more, the first model with GCN bc was already great to begin with, the one with no GC bc was okay but this one is just useless. There's just no point in making this model let alone buy one, removing everything but the disc drive is just pointless. At least keep the SD Card slot so game saves could be transferable. To me it looks nothing like an official product, more like a Famiclone type of hardware.

mrkuribo

#17

mrkuribo said:

No internet, no SD card, no GC-support and no component out. There's no reason for this thing to exist especially with that price. In Finland Wii mini costs 119 euros. Way overpriced.

Einherjar

#18

Einherjar said:

Why should it generate any interest ? It isnt that much cheaper nor is it smaller than a normal Wii but misses some of its vital features (component-out, internet for the WiiShop) This thing has literally nothing that going for it and there is absolutely no reason, why anyone should by the mini Wii over a regular one.

ToastyYogurt

#19

ToastyYogurt said:

Seriously, what was the point of making this? The Wii's been on the market for 5+ years, and it's successor is taking over. I wouldn't expect strong Wii sales now, and the fact that they spent money designing an even more butchered version of the Wii (compared to the GC support-less one) is silly. Besides, it would be better to pick up a used Wii anyway. This thing lacks everything the original Wii had except the ability to play disc games, and on top of that, it looks stupid. Yeah, it's nice that you can play games with this thing, but what if I want to play an NES game without an NES, or take my Mario Kart skills online? This thing shouldn't exist.

MEGAMAN_D

#20

MEGAMAN_D said:

why is it when a games company taste sucsses it goes to their head and causes them to overprice their products and make really dumb decissions.

I hope no one buys the wii mini, so it will make them think twice before doing anything like this again.

Nintendo's focus should be Wii U and 3DS

Hardy83

#21

Hardy83 said:

Good. This is nothing but a cash grab by Nintendo. It's an extremely gimped Wii sold WAY overpriced.
If the system was $50-$75 US then maybe, but $100 is insulting when you can get a black Wii with Mario Bros and WAY more features for $150 or less with sales.

I'm glad consumers are THIS stupid, also 34k sold in Canada isn't that great, we have a population of 30+ million.

rjejr

#22

rjejr said:

There really is no way to defend this system at this price. Not to say it couldn't be useful for a number of big off-line only games - SMG 1 and 2, LoZ TWP and SS, the Operation Rainfall JRPG games, but for $100 the system should come with 2 of them. Or it should be sold at petrol stations for $29 by itself.

I really wish somebody at Nintendo would have explained why they even built this thing, all of their marketing muscle needs to be behind the Wii U.

Yosher

#23

Yosher said:

This thing is too expensive for what it offers when you compare it to the ''big'' Wii. At MOST is should cost 80 bucks. And the very least they could do is include Wii Sports in there.

Farmboy74

#24

Farmboy74 said:

The Wii mini should have been an idea that never got of the drawing board. Nintendo have bigger concerns in the Uk, Iike advertising the Wii U, and making sure it's a success not some pointless cash grab

ThumperUK

#25

ThumperUK said:

Does anyone outside Nintendo and Nintendolife users know it even exists? Nintendo needs to get its act together - along with no marketing for the Mini, I've seen no adverts for Monster Hunter, Luigi's Mansion or Lego City.

Its policy of no marketing is a major factor in current sales failures - I've seen more ads for the dreadful Aliens (plus countless other xbox & ps3 games) in the past few months than for any wiiu or 3ds.
Today i noticed Game has all but removed WiiU from its store space - they haven't even bothered getting Need for Speed in stock.

Come on Nintendo, insert a rocket and do something! Anything!!

JulienIsTheMan

#26

JulienIsTheMan said:

I think the Wii Mini is one of the dumbest products Nintendo ever produced. What's the point? Why would you need a smaller Wii? The only current console that's even slightly oversized is the 360.

ouroborous

#27

ouroborous said:

the regular wii is a really small and sleek console to begin with, it never needed an attempted re-size. and really, all they apparently did was make it hideous and take away the wifi, it's really the same size as the regular wii anyhow. at this point, i would only be even remotely interested if it was like $50 new, maybe then i could convince myself that i had some use for it or would gift to to a niece or cousin or something.

they should have made a Wii portable, basically like a WiiU Gamepad but which plays Wii games (and GC games too please) and doesnt need a TV at all. i wasnt a big fan of the wii to begin with but i would probably be interested in that. oh but then the wiimote controls would make that impossible i guess, or would at least make a bunch of wii games unplayable.... hm... would that even be such a loss.... shoulda made all wii games with at least optional regular controls, ya fools.

sonicfan1373

#28

sonicfan1373 said:

I really like Nintendo consoles. I love the fact that they focus on unique gameplay, simply fun and immersive games, and a low price point. In fact, the Wii became my favourite console this generation for the reasons above, and now I am really enjoying the Wii U. The redesigns that Nintendo makes also do makes sense, sometimes they take something away that is no longer necessary but they compensate for it by adding something else. The Wii Family Edition removed the GC port (which made sense because GC games were no longer being sold or published and getting a used GC is pretty cheap now), but they made up for it by offering great bundles. The DSi removed GBA backward compatibility but it added an online store for mini games and a camera. The GB Micro removed GB and GBC compatibility but it added a better screen.

The Wii Mini on the other hand is terrible. It cannot output video at 480P because it cannot use component cables (this is something that the decade old Gamecube can do), it has no method of file transfer, Wii games that require two USB accessories do not work, no Wifi means no WiiWare, online play, or Virtual Console (VC for me was the biggest online feature of the Wii), they did not include the Skyward Sword Save Fix channel so if you happen to run the Skyward Sword glitch you have to send your system to Nintendo, they did not even bother redesigning the Wii Menu (which is the same, except for the fact that a few options are lazily removed), and it is not even that mini (aside from the features).

Now some people will say that the Wii Mini is justifiable because of the price. I say no, because I have seen Wii Family Edition bundles (with two games and two Wiimotes + Nun-chucks) being sold here in Canada for just a bit more than the Mini and you can buy a used Wii (which has Wifi, 480P support, etc) for around $40-$60. The Wii Mini also gives the Wii brand more bad reputation because of its omissions, and this could be very bad for the Wii U as well since it is using the same branding.

If I were Nintendo I would discontinue the Wii Mini immediately. I would create a redesigned Wii hardware with the disk drive and Wifi included. I would allow users to connect a portable HD to the console and I would offer Wii games and GC games (along with VC games and WiiWare titles and things like Netflix and Amazon Instant Video [which are already on the Wii) online. I would also build in a RF communications chip and bundle a Wavebird-like Gamecube controller for GC and VC games. Users who have the original GC and Wii games on disk will also be able to play it on the system. I'd call the system the Mini Arcade, include a Wiimote Plus + Nunchuck and a Wavebird controller plus a copy of Wii Sports or maybe $20 eShop card.

Mk_II

#29

Mk_II said:

actually, this will sell to (a) collectors and (b) families who don't want online and dont care about CG games. It wont sell millions but enough to justify the release. im sure they've done the market research.

WingedSnagret

#31

WingedSnagret said:

I'm honestly surprised this hasn't been made available in NA. One would think Nintendo would send it here before Europe.

DePapier

#34

DePapier said:

@ToastyYogurt You know — and I'm actually addressing this to most of us on this website --, casual gamers don't play online. Casual gamers don't play Wii Virtual Console. Casual gamers don't play Gamecube on the Wii.
And casual gamers don't buy their consoles second-hand.

We're not the targeted demographic of this product, but it is silly (though one day doesn't mean much) that even those clients haven't been approached through marketing.

DePapier

#35

DePapier said:

But I just read from @Kuribo that it is over 100 € in Finland. (Wait a minute... HELL, IT'S ACTUALLY OVER 100 € IN FRANCE, TOO!!!) :O
THAT is just wrong.:O This product should have never gone over the 99.99 landmark in any currency. :O

Pokefanmum82

#37

Pokefanmum82 said:

they made this for the casual gamer and the family that has little kids. I think this is a good idea for a child's first console, especially for those parents that don't want their kids online. just because none of us have a use for it doesn't mean that nintendo is in the wrong here. so get over yourselves. they didn't do this for us.

GazPlant

#38

GazPlant said:

It's been released?! I didn't even know that and I've certainly not heard ANYTHING about it. Great marketing ¬¬

Zombie_Barioth

#39

Zombie_Barioth said:

This has got to be one of the most butchered console revisions I've ever seen, to the point theres barely any point to it at all. Its no surprise nobody is buying this when they removed most of its features.

@DePapier How do you know for a fact that casuals don't play online or buy second-hand? Are you telling me that casual gamers buy COD for the campaign. Or that they won't buy second-hand to save money?

Weather or not we're the target audience doesn't automatically make this a smart move.

Falco

#40

Falco said:

£79 is the guts of a 100euro and that's to expensive and if no-one buys one they'll be forced to cut the price =D so its all good really, not to many early adopters getting burnt here. I know it will not output 480p, but can anyone tell me will it output RGB with an RGB cable?

BakaKnight

#41

BakaKnight said:

The fact in Italy it cost 110€ is a total let down...

I was slightly tempted by it, but it cost too much for be a "mini" version!

A brand new normal Wii with a game included cost 130€, only 20€ extras, and therefore, removing the game's price usually around 50€, the normal console with the controllers comes at 80€, cheaper than the cheaper version and with more functions.

Is it only me founding all this ridicoulus? @_@;

anastazius

#42

anastazius said:

@Blizzaga But you can get red WiiMotes with the 'Wii Play: Motion' game bundle! I kinda would like a Wii Mini, I love the design of it. And red & black are my favourite colours...

anastazius

#44

anastazius said:

"The Wii mini is a smaller, redesigned Wii which lacks YPBPR (component video/d-terminal) and s-video output, GameCube compatibility, online gaming, the SD card slot and Wi-Fi support.[61][62] It was released in Canada on December 7, 2012 with a MSRP of C$99.99, in Europe on March 15, 2013 and in the UK on March 22, 2013.[63][64] Nintendo uses this console and the Nintendo Selects game series to promote low cost gaming. The Wii mini only has one USB port, unlike its predecessors, which had two ports. The Wii mini is styled in matte black with a red border, and includes a red Wii Remote Plus and Nunchuk but does not include a pack-in game. A composite video/audio cable, wired sensor bar and power adapter are also included.[65]"

anastazius

#45

anastazius said:

Hmm I'd guess it DOES support RGB, but without trying it I wouldn't wanna assume. We have one at work, I might see if I'm allowed to 'test' it.

MEGAMAN_D

#46

MEGAMAN_D said:

@ThumperUK

Now this is the part that worries me, because I have noticed the same thing.

Nobody seem to be getting in wii u releases, I have to keep ordering games online.

I was talking to the manager at my local game store because I wanted to pre order injustice, he then told me that they probably wont get the wii u version in.

I am starting to really get fed up with nintendo, because as a die hard fan I feel let down. At the moment they just seem to be doing everything wrong.

I think nintendo only really care about the japanese market, and as long as its doing ok over there to hell with the rest of us

CrabGats

#47

CrabGats said:

I don't even mind the lack of Gamecube but the lack of SD card support and online support really kills this. Also @Happy_Mask no it wont because the Gameboy Micro didn't completely strip the essential components of the handheld like the Wii Mini did to the Wii. Besides the red WiiMote I see no appeal.

Kage_88

#48

Kage_88 said:

Not exactly surprising. The Wii has been out since 2006, so everyone who wanted one, has got one.

Oh, and the Wii U is out AND it plays Wii games. That too.

I'll still be picking one up though!

PSI_Gaming

#49

PSI_Gaming said:

I'm probably just the only one who just knew of this "Wii Mini" because of this article.

Omega

#50

Omega said:

I don't understand why people think this is terrible.

  • The fact that Nintendo forces you under torture to buy one is terrible?
  • Playing "Xenoblade Chronicles", "The Last Story", "Pandora's Tower" or "Super Mario Galaxy" is terrible?
  • Everything that is not the newest console hype is terrible?
  • Not caring about online is terrible?
Starwolf_UK

#52

Starwolf_UK said:

I guess Nintendo must have pretty small expectations for these and it met those in Canada.

@sonicfan1373 With no SD card slot how do you propose Nintendo would fix the Zelda SS bug? They have no ability to transfer saves off the system bar under the hood electronics (which they probably won't do for Zelda). This almost makes me tempted to get one just to spite myself by playing Skyward Sword that but alas, I have nothing with composite inputs.

LunaticPandora

#53

LunaticPandora said:

@Omega Ignorant or what. Lets see - SD only, no 480p, no SD card support, people DO care about online you know, which also means no VC/Wiiware, no gamecube support, waste of resources when they should be focusing on the Wii U - and by extension, no customer interest means people don't give a crap about the Wii anymore, which further solidifies my point that they should be focusing on Wii U, not attempting a quick cash grab which hasn't well... grabbed cash. Face it, this console is a piece of junk which has no reason to exist.

Omega

#54

Omega said:

People are still interested in the Wii. And there are enough that don't care about online and just want a cheap but reliable console. Give the mini a few months and I guess it's cheap enough for everyone.

Face it, this console is a piece of junk which has no reason to exist.

However, this is only your opinion.

Omega

#56

Omega said:

Ah, come on. This is only UK and the mini was released only a few days ago! Give it some time, and we'll see how it turns out. :-)

kereke12

#57

kereke12 said:

I like the design on it, but i don't like the fact it doesn't have internet. But i would get it.

kereke12

#58

kereke12 said:

@LunaticPandora You have a point but..........people that don't have money for wifi can enjoy the console, plus its also good for young kids to enjoy, and so parents don't have to worry what there kids are doing. So to me it looks good, yea i said it doesn't have internet on my comment but still. Generally people would buy it.

Henmii

#59

Henmii said:

No tears here! Nintendo should focus TOTALLY on 3DS and Wii u! Not on a console who's time is up (Wii)!!

(Though I would still like Kirby anniversary in Europe. Why isn't it still out?!)

FullbringIchigo

#60

FullbringIchigo said:

in all honesty can you really blame people for not buying this when they can buy a WiiU and play Wii games on that

Kirk

#61

Kirk said:

Because it is a pile of utter crap.

Seriously, there are pretty much no redeeming features of this console.

It's not really that "Mini". It's overpriced for what it is. A very basic two generation out of date games console that does nothing but play games. It looks a bit cheap and nasty. It has no online whatsoever. No VC games. No eShop games. No GameCube support. Not component cable support. They didn't even bother to clean up the dashboard to reflect the fact that you're never going to fill all those channels on the first page let alone use any of the additional pages.

For putting out a clear rush job thrown together ill-conceived product like this I think Nintendo actually deserves to lose the next generation to teach it a lesson to respect the consumer.

As a Nintendo console it's actually insulting and offensive in my opinion and I thought Nintendo was better than this but apparently it no longer is.

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