Despite electronics giant Sony being a Japanese company, its PlayStation 4 video game console sure has taken its sweet making it to stores in Japan. The next generation system was released in the U.S., Canada, and Europe last November, since racking up over five million units sold, but Japanese gamers still have a few days to go before the PlayStation4 becomes available here on February 22.
The upcoming big day hasn’t escaped the notice of rival video game maker Nintendo, which has decided to welcome Sony’s competing product by cutting prices on its own titles.
With its stable of loveable, mild-mannered heroes and generally low-violence, family-friendly fictional worlds, Nintendo has a pretty well-deserved reputation as the nice guys of the video game industry. That doesn’t mean they’re not running a business, though, nor that they won’t go for the jugular in order to protect their piece of the interactive entertainment pie.
Nintendo recently announced a sale through its online Nintendo eShop. The promotion starts on February 22, which just so happens to coincide with the first day Japanese gamers can trade in a fistful of yen for a PlayStation 4. Wow, isn’t that a coincidence?
On February 22 and 23, shoppers can save 20 to 30 percent on selected games featuring the company’s giant ape, Donkey Kong. So if you’ve ever wanted to own Donkey Kong Returns 3D, or take control of pre-Super Mario in the original Donkey Kong, now’s your chance.
Nintendo has no intentions of letting Sony up off the mat after this opening sucker punch, as following the Donkey Kong discounts come two more weekends of sales. March 1 and 2 is all about The Legend of Zelda protagonist Link, with price slashes on the original title in the franchise, it’s sequels, The Adventure of Link, the Game Boy installment Link’s Awakening, and the remade Windwaker HD.
The last weekend of the sale sees the head honcho of the Nintendo cartel himself, Mario, get in on the action. Prices will be hammered down on March 8 and 9 for two games everyone loved (Super Mario World and Super Mario Kart), a game some people loved, (Paper Mario: Sticker Star), a game only a few people remember, (Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins), and a game no one really wants (Mario Open Golf).
All in all, an aggressive move by Nintendo, but in hindsight, we should have expected such no-holds-barred ferocity from a company whose best known corporate spokesperson smiles and laughs as he crushes and burns slow-moving reptiles.
▼ “It’s a me, a sociopath!”