When Nintendo released the NES Classic Edition last November, the company basically gave themselves a license to print money. Whether you're a Nintendo fan or not, you could not deny the immediate success of the retro console as it sold out across the globe and people have been waiting to plop down $60 and get their copy. Now, as confirmed by IGN this afternoon, the company will be ceasing production on the system and sending out the last of their units to retailers across North America over the rest of the month. Apparently, the system wasn't intended to be a long-term project for the company, and that these additional shipments were an unexpected bonus to the plan. This decision also includes the controller, but Nintendo isn't stopping any third-party companies from making accessories. Below is a statement that a Nintendo representative gave IGN.
"Throughout April, NOA territories will receive the last shipments of Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition systems for this year. We encourage anyone interested in obtaining this system to check with retail outlets regarding availability. … We understand that it has been difficult for many consumers to find a system, and for that, we apologize. We have paid close attention to consumer feedback, and we greatly appreciate the incredible level of consumer interest and support for this product."
Personally, I believe this has to be one of the dumbest moves the company could have made. The system was sold out, people have been waiting to buy more, it couldn't be more in-demand unless it somehow helped you lose weight without exercise. Ending the system after only five months with so many people wanting one feels like Nintendo saying "You know what, we don't need any more money or nostalgia." What's more, if this is the audience we have waiting for the NES version, imagine how many people would have bought a SNES, N64, or even Famicom Classic Editions. We'll see if public outcry gets the company to change their minds, but for now, you'll have to keep scouring your local stores for new products on a daily basis. Because once these systems are gone, they are gone for good. (Ebay scalpers pending.)