In 2016, Nintendo gave us the NES Classic , and we bought millions of them. Then is 2017, Nintendo gave us the Super NES Classic and we bought even more millions of those. The two Classic systems have combined sales of over 8.8 million, so you might be surprised to hear we aren’t getting an N64 Classic next.
We’ve heard rumors of an N64 Classic, with a Nintendo 64 controller trademark back in July being the biggest hint something might be in the works. But this week, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime confirmed the N64 Classic does not exist and Nintendo is not even considering making, let alone launching such a system.
The revelation came as part of an interview Fils-Aime gave to Kotaku while in New York. The reason why we aren’t getting an N64 Classic may surprise you as well as reminding us Nintendo is a business that deals in fun, not the other way around.
Fils-Aime explained that the NES Classic and SNES Classic were launched as a “bridge” to cover the transition from the Wii U to the Switch . The Wii U performed very poorly and died quickly, and it did that before the Switch was ready to be launched. To cover that period of time before the launch, Nintendo saw an opportunity to continue selling hardware through retro collection systems for its oldest consoles.
The tactic worked, but now the Switch is established and selling extremely well. So while consumers are asking when the N64 Classic will happen, Nintendo asked why it needs to happen and decided it didn’t. It isn’t a Classic system that will never happen, but as Fils-Aime made clear, “I would not ever rule something out … but what I can tell you is certainly that’s not in our planning horizon.”
Instead of another Classic system, it looks as though Nintendo wants the focus to turn to its online subscription service on the Switch. Offering classic content through this service bypasses the need to make another physical item and all the costs associated with that. It also helps to encourage more Switch sales.
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