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Wednesday, January 2, 2008

A Wii bit like a drug

I broke down and bought the Nintendo Wii on Ebay this weekend. Wii's are impossible to find in stores. The demand for the addictive physical gaming system is through the roof, yet Nintendo insists on keeping the retail price at the ridiculously low $250. Hence, there has been a massive shortage of Wii's for over a year now.

Obviously, if you are one of the lucky ones able to get your hands on the elusive Wii, then that price point is to your benefit. If you are like me however, and have recently become addicted to Guitar Hero 80's edition (a predecessor to Wii's Guitar Hero III), as well as Wii's funny and quirky "Cooking with Mama" game, then you can understand why I was willing to pay $100 over retail on Ebay to get my fix.

That may seem ridiculous, irrational even (calling someone with an economics background "irrational" is a little like calling Stephen Hawkings "stupid" - it's perhaps the most offensive thing one can say to a trained econ person). Nevertheless, I need my guitar hero and I need to cook with mama, and I need to play golf in my living room. So BACK OFF ;).

7 comments:

Mike Fladlien said...

i think nintendo's plant and equipment was fixed in the short-run and could only meet demand at the 17 million units they made...i also think that nintendo wasn't sure if the demand would last and preferred to have cash in the bank instead of invested in the game inventory...i also believe you can't suppress a market like ebay...i hope you're home enjoying the utility from playing guitar hero....here in iowa, we are basking in the bathos of the caucus...

Anonymous said...

I believe that the Nintendo corporation planned the shortage to benifit themselves. They are tyring to get into a monopoly and there is no way that a family friendly consol would have sold with the vast majority of gammers being 16-25. What I believe they are doing is trying to create their own monopoly with a product that has very different attributes for example the ps3 and Xbox360 are neck in neck competing to have the best online services and games as well as having fast processors and they are decked out with dvd and hd players and are overall high tech where as the Wii is very simple to use and has a low processor but it cannot play dvds and hd, and in a way they are trying to promote fitness and pg graphics and bringing family together

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