Wii U must be under $300 - Analyst

Wedbush's Michael Pachter says optimal price for Nintendo's new console is $250 or less, system lacks "killer app" to help drive system sales.

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The Wii U must retail for under $300 at launch later this year, Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter told CVG. The industry watcher further explained that an optimal price for the system is $250 or less.

Only Nintendo knows just how much the Wii U will cost.
Only Nintendo knows just how much the Wii U will cost.

If the Wii U launches at $250, it will mirror the Wii, which went on sale during November 2006 in North America at that price point. Nintendo showed off the Wii U GamePad at the 2012 Electronic Entertainment Expo last week and highlighted new games like Pikmin 3 and Lego City Undercover, but has yet to reveal a price for the system, which is due for a worldwide release this holiday season.

A report from April suggested the Wii U would cost more than $300 at launch. This estimate was based on a purported total cost of materials required to manufacture the Wii U console, as revealed by sources involved with manufacturing and distributing Nintendo products.

Pachter also spoke about the Wii U's GamePad, saying the new controller is "sufficiently novel and different from traditional controllers," but his praise for the system ended there. He said the Wii U lacks a "killer app" that will drive system sales in the way that the system-bundled Wii Sports did for the Wii.

The analyst also said he was confounded by some of the design choices for Wii U software. In particular, he leveled his criticisms at the newly announced Sing game from DJ Hero studio FreeStyle Games.

"At E3 I was not particularly impressed with many of the games, and in particular found Sing baffling," he said. "I don't understand why I need a tablet to read karaoke words rather than reading the words on the TV screen instead."

For more on Nintendo's E3 2012 announcements, check out GameSpot's coverage of the firm's marquee media briefing.

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