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Heavy global 3DS price cut confirmed as sales stiff

Nintendo has confirmed that 3DS will drop from $249 to $169.99 in the US on August 12, and to ¥15,000 in Japan on August 11, down from its current ¥25,000.

Nintendo said this morning that 3DS will drop in Europe on August 12, but has declined to offer a fixed price.

"I can confirm that Nintendo of Europe will be reducing the European trade price of Nintendo 3DS to retailers by around a third from August 12 2011, as part of a global trade price reduction initiative," a rep told VG247 this morning.

"The ultimate price to consumers is, of course, determined by retailers, however we look forward to consumers benefiting from much lower retail prices very soon."

The Australian 3DS will drop from AU $349.95 to AU$249.95 on August 12.

The current quarter, as promised earlier this morning, will see the price of the machine reduced globally.

Nintendo has declined to confirm a figure on the European reduction as yet.

The company is said to be incurring a loss on 3DS units sold at the new price point.

"For anyone who was on the fence about buying a Nintendo 3DS, this is a huge motivation to buy now," said Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime.

"We are giving shoppers every incentive to pick up a Nintendo 3DS, from an amazing new price to a rapid-fire succession of great games."

3DS released this February in Japan and this March in the US and Europe.

Nintendo is launching an Nintendo 3DS Ambassador Programme to consumers who have purchased the Nintendo 3DS at the "original launch price" in all of the cut territories, meaning you'll be able to get 10 NES games and 10 Game Boy and Game Boy Advance games for free if you connect to the Nintendo eShop before the August 12.

"The free software will then be made available at a later stage," said NoE. "More details on the programme will be announced on the Nintendo of Europe website shortly."

In the US and Australia, 3DS "ambassadorial" status grants you access to 10 free NES Virtual Console games on September 1 before their general release, including The Legend of Zelda, Balloon Fight and Ice Climber, and 10 more Game Boy Advance Virtual Console games.

The GBA games - like Yoshi's Island, Super Mario Advance 3, Mario Kart: Super Circuit, Metroid Fusion, WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgames and Mario vs. Donkey Kong - will not be available to anyone else.

Q1 figures show 3DS trouble

Nintendo's first quarter figures this morning were the precursor to the cut announcement. 3DS hardware sold a mere 0.71 million units in the three months ending June 30, while 3DS software moved 4.53 million units in the period.

Wii U remained listed as a 2012 release.

Wii hardware sales fell dramatically in the quarter, down from 3.04 million in FY 2010 to 1.56 million units this year, while Wii software sold 13.44 milllion units in the quarter.

DS hardware sold 1.44 million units in the period, heavily down from 3.15 million last year. There were 12.44 million pieces of DS software sold in the quarter.

Net sales were down from ¥189 billion last year to ¥94 billion for the period.

Nintendo is still making a loss, with the deficit stuck at ¥25.5 billion compared to ¥25.2 billion a year ago.

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