Nintendo has now announced that they are cancelling the NES Classic console in North America. The reactions to the announcement that I have seen have varied some, though most people I have talked to seem to think it is not a great move on the part of Nintendo.
It does seem to me that, based on the incredibly high demand here, Nintendo would have no problem continuing to sell the NES Classic. They found a sweet spot with the price point and nostalgia factor, which made the NES Classic appealing to both the casual and hardcore gamers I know. However, I did know quite a few people who decided after the stock was so low to rely on alternative like a retro pi, rather than fight for the sixty dollar system.
Personally I am one of those who gave up. My cousin coded me a retro pi for Christmas this year, which has a larger NES library than the NES Classic does, so I decided that as nifty as the little console looks, it was not worth the effort for me. Clearly there are a lot of people who have not given up, considering the resale market online. I have some listings at multiple hundreds of dollars, which seems strange to me when there are places where you could buy an original NES and decent number of cartridges for that price.
I did read an interesting article about how the NES classic and cancellation may be a marketing move that could work in Nintendo’s benefit, by bringing attention to the brand and getting people thinking about a Switch. The only issue I see with this is that they haven’t made the Switch easily available either. It seems to me that if the intention was to get people who didn’t get a classic to go buy a Switch then Nintendo would need to get the Switch on shelves in stores.
Either way it is an interesting choice on the part of Nintendo, and only time will tell if it will pay off.