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Nintendo Discontinues The NES Classic Console

The NES Classic Edition, a compact version of the original Nintendo Entertainment System, was one of the hottest gifts of the 2016 holiday season, and Nintendo's well-documented problems keeping the mini-console in stock have continued well into 2017. But if you haven't managed to pick one up yet, you probably won't be able to at all.

IGN reports that the NES Classic Edition has been discontinued, with the last shipments of the machine going out later this month.

In an official statement, Nintendo said, "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."


For its part, Nintendo seems aware that there's still a large demand for the device, adding, "We understand that it has been difficult for many consumers to find a system, and for that we apologize."

Given the system's popularity, that seems like a weird decision, but Nintendo representatives said that everything is proceeding according to schedule. "NES Classic Edition wasn't intended to be an ongoing, long-term product," a Nintendo representative told IGN. "However, due to high demand, we did add extra shipments to our original plans."

Along with the NES Classic, which plays emulated versions of 30 classic Nintendo Entertainment System games, the stand-alone NES Classic Controller will also be discontinued. Nintendo said that the availability of third-party accessories like wireless controllers will be up to individual manufacturers.


The news about the demise of the NES Classic Edition comes on the same day that hackers said they've gotten the Retroarch emulator (which plays Super Nintendo, Nintendo 64, and Sega Genesis games) running on the mini-console. Previously, tech enthusiasts figured out how to load internet-downloaded ROMs on the NES Classic, dramatically expanding the selection of games that the machine can play.

Discontinuing a console while it's still very, very popular seems like a strange move, but this is Nintendo. They've made mistakes before, and chances are, the company will do it again–and again, and again.