As the Wii U awaits high profile games to join its library in the second half of the year, the short term pressures on retailers to sell the systems are clearly taking a toll. Earlier in May, UK supermarket chain Asda sparked a mini retail war by slashing the console's price, with some — not all — rivals following suit. It seems the trend could start in North America, too.
Target has broken rank in the U.S. and cut the Wii U basic model (8GB) to $239.99, a 20% reduction from $299.99; at this stage the Deluxe model is still $349.99. There are bundle offers, too, but these have become common in 2013 as retailers attempt to shift stock and entice customers without the advantage of a genuine wholesale price cut from Nintendo. At the time of writing other retailers such as Walmart and Gamestop are still listing the standard system prices on their U.S. websites, despite worrying ongoing rumours of poor sales figures.
While perhaps good for consumers, price drops aren't necessarily welcome for Nintendo, as it shows difficulty for retailers shifting stock and increases the challenge to encourage these major players to invest in additional units. Nintendo has made noises about working with retail partners to retain their support ahead of a major push in the coming months, while a formal price cut has been ruled out to date.