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Nintendo drops Wii to $149

For some time, game industry observers have expected Nintendo to lower the price of its console. With a new machine coming next year, the company has done so.

Nintendo is dropping the price of its Wii game console to $149 and including a Mario game in the bundle, the company said early today.

The Wii is getting a price cut.
The Wii is getting a price cut. Nintendo

Industry observers have been expecting the company to slash the price of the device--which has been $169 with a bundle. Their expectations grew further with last week's announcement that Nintendo will release a successor to the Wii next year.

Many observers thought Nintendo needed to do something to revitalize the console, which for years was unbeatable but in recent months has struggled to maintain its momentum. Sales have slowed, even as Microsoft and Sony have picked up steam with the launches of their motion control systems, the Kinect and Move, respectively.

Nintendo said in a release today that beginning May 15, consumers can buy a Wii in either black or white for the new price of $149. It will come with Mario Kart Wii and a Wii Wheel accessory in the same color as the console.

The company also said that on May 15, it will launch its new "Nintendo Selects" series of Wii games. For $20, gamers can buy four hit Wii games: The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess; Mario Super Sluggers; Animal Crossing: City Folk; and Wii Sports. This would be the first time Wii Sports will be available to buy. Previously, it was bundled with the console.