How does that saying go again? “Patience is a virtue.” Although quite true in many cases, this is one cliché that is especially appropriate for gamers thinking of buying bleeding edge video game consoles at launch. Case(s) in point: look no further than the recent releases of the PS3 and Wii, as well as the Xbox 360 before them.
In all 3 cases, people who were really desperate to get them had to shell out twice or triple the price on Ebay, when they could’ve waited a couple of months and paid the regular price once more shipments came in. You could argue that the people who lined up for days outside the major retailers didn’t wait patiently and still got the console, but try to see it the other way; those are the guys who patiently lined up to get what they wanted, and so did indeed demonstrate great patience.
Now if people would just wait a few months, they might actually get rewarded. For example, there are rumours circulating that Nintendo will re-launch Wii in spring of 2007, with different coloured models (such as those seen in E3), and a price reduction to USD$200! Of course none of this is confirmed, but I don’t see why Nintendo would demo those units at E3 and not release them at all, so there is probably some truth to this rumour.
I think Nintendo has really outmanoeuvred Sony and Microsoft in this battle. They didn’t get sucked into head-on fights and try to build an all purpose entertainment machine (a.k.a. personal computer); instead they built what most people want when they think gaming consoles: a gaming machine at a cheaper and more affordable price. I also think Nintendo knew they were going to reduce the prices in the near future, so that they would gain even more footing in the battle of gaming consoles. We’ll see if that is the case in the spring, and if so, great move Nintendo!