The Problems of a Nintendo 64 Mini - Part IV - The Price

Photo: Don’t Feed the Gamers (via Notebook Check), Image: Dreamstime, Illustration: Me

This is the Fourth (and final! I promise!) part of a series of articles on the problems Nintendo would have to overcome (or the compromises we the gamers would need to live with) if Nintendo launches a Nintendo 64 Classic Mini.


We’ve already discussed the issues from the maker’s (Nintendo) perspective, but this ultimate barrier is the only thing that stands between the Nintendo and us the Consumers:

Final Problem: The Price

Price is always a difficult topic to analyze for an external party, since one doesn’t know the cost of neither both Software nor Hardware, and can only speculate based on previous iterations of the product, and the known (or possible, at best) characteristics of the new one.


Rough Sketch’

So, for the N64 mini, I think we can safely assume the following broad characteristics:

  • It will have between 8 and 25 games
    (8 being the minimum to cover the Core Nintendo Characters and 25 being the total of available N64 games in the Virtual Consoles)
  • It will use controllers shaped like the N64 controller
    (Given that the filling of the trademark for the controller image was what started giving validity to the N64 mini rumors)
  • It will use a more powerful hardware than the SNES Mini
    (By necessity, given how the current hardware is two sizes too small)
  • It will cost between 80 and 100 USD
    (N46 VC games cost more than the SNES ones, plus the cost of new hardware)
  • It will be announced on June/July
    (The NES mini was announced on mid July 2016, the SNES mini on late June 2017. There is a 50% chance that the N64 mini will be announced this year. It could even be in the next three weeks!)


In an old article of mine, I tried to predict the price of the SNES classic mini based on the ratio between the prices of all the (included in it) NES VC games, and the MRSP of the NES mini, which ‘meant’ a ‘60% discount’ at the time.


So for this N64 mini, we need to first decide on the final number of games that could be included. We’ll assume we won’t have any issues with the storage. I believe that including even 20 games (the same as the SNES) would make the system prohibitively costly, but it still would have to include at least one game per Core Nintendo Character, a wide selection of genres, and several multiplayer games, so I venture that it will include:

1.-Super Mario 64 (Because c’mon! How they could NOT?)
2.-The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (A.K.A. The Best Zelda for a lot of people)
3.-F-Zero X (Racing, Multiplayer, and 60fps gameplay. Feat. Cap. Falco)
4.-Star Fox 64 (Shooter, Multiplayer, Feat. Star Fox)
5.-Donkey Kong 64 (Adventure, Multiplayer, Feat. Donkey and Diddy Kong)
6.-Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards (Platformer, grandaddy of all the 2.5D Kirby games)
7.-Pokémon Snap (On-Rails Shooter, closer to Pokemon Go than Puzzle League)
8.-Yoshi’s Story (Platformer ... it has Yoshi?)
9.-The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask (A.K.A. The Other Best Zelda for some people)
10.-Paper Mario (RPG, Good writing)
11.-Super Smash Bros.(Fighting, Multiplayer)
12.-Mario Kart 64 (Racing, Multiplayer)
13.-Mario Party 2 (Party Game by definition)


Thirteen games at $9.99 each would be $129.87. If we apply the same logic that I did for the SNES mini (a 60% ‘discount’, or 40% of the base price) and we adjust to the nearest 9, we get a $59.99 for a first draft.


Sounds very cheap! I agree on that (and would be very happy if it was this cheap, who wouldn’t?), considering all these games are firs-party (leaving licensing costs out of it), but that 40% was simply a guess based on the NES games’ pricing, and I would like to think that my SNES guess missed the actual price (by just $10) because the extra included controller. So, for the N64, I’m a firm believer on the idea that it should include at least one extra controller, given how now we have a lot more Multiplayer games. But this time, the controllers are bigger (if they respect the original size) and more complex (moreso if they work some rumble into them), so I think is sensible to add $20 for their troubles.


This $79.99 leaves us on the ballpark of the SNES. I’d still be happy with this price, but I don’t think an extra $10 would be unfair, considering that, for $89.99 (still in a impulse purchase range for some) we would be getting a more powerful system with more storage.

N64 Classic Mini - Final Pitch.jpg

No banana for scale
No banana for scale
Photo: eBay

A Nintendo 64 Classic Mini announced by the end of July, including 13 games (more than half of them with Multiplayer), two full-sized controllers (one of which could be an Atomic Purple one) for the low price of $89.99 MSRP.

What do you think? Too expensive for only thirteen games? Keep in mind that a spare controller will come in handy after Mario Party 2


This post is part of the Sixtay Days of Writting Challenge. Post Count: 30 + 5

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