Reggie Fils-Aime Reiterates That There's "Nothing to Announce in Terms of an Ambassador Program"
Posted by Thomas Whitehead
That really should be that, then
After the $50 price cut for the Wii U 32GB model was announced, some naturally made comparisons to the 3DS price cut of 2011 and wondered whether some form of Ambassador Program would be offered, in which 3DS early adopters received 10 NES and 10 GBA games. The scenarios are different, of course, in that the Wii U has been on the market longer than the 3DS was before its cut, and the actual size of the reduction is less.
Earlier in the week a Nintendo customer representative stated there were "no plans" for an equivalent program; with the greatest respect for the diligent work of that employee, however, messages from such sources can occasionally be muddled or slightly incorrect, as was notable during issues with a Pikmin 3 eShop promotion in Europe, when technical issues were explained poorly by a representative and caused confusion around the web. In this case, however, Nintendo of America President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime has come out in this case, however, and reiterated the same message. Below is what he told Kotaku.
Reggie Fils-Aime: The focus on making sure that this holiday, [the Wii U's] second holiday, is really strong is actually quite consistent with the way that we always thought about our hardware launches. Look at Nintendo 3DS. We lined up Mario Kart 7 and Super Mario 3D Land to make sure that its second holiday was as strong as possible.
Kotaku: Right, but with that one, the precedent set there was that you guys dropped the price by a third, I think under the recognition that the machine wasn’t moving. And then, once that happened, that seemed to really propel it along. But, I mean, the Ambassador program and all that certainly sent a signal to me that Nintendo had miscalculated the appeal of the system at its initial price point. Lowering it seemed to solve it, right? Lowering it dramatically and doing those types of things [worked]. Are you guys doing any sort of Ambassador program for Wii U owners to thank them for coming in early and withstanding some of the [software] drought?
Reggie Fils-Aime: So, we have nothing to announce in terms of an Ambassador Program. And what I would do is reinforce what you just said. The situations are very different not only in terms of the timing, not only in terms of the level of the reduction… it’s a very different situation.
So there you have it, we'd stop holding your breath for any freebies following the Wii U price cut.