The stripped down version of the Nintendo Wii is making a late debut to the United States.
The Wii mini already launched in Canada last year, but it will cross the border to the US sometime this month. Nintendo announced today that the micro-console will be available for purchase in the US in time for the holidays for $99.99. The Wii mini does not play GameCube games, has no internect connectivity, and is much smaller.
The bundle comes with a red Wii Mini, red Wii Remote Plus controller, red Wii Nunchuk controller, and Mario Kart Wii. Availability will differ by location, but Nintendo says the Wii mini should be available in stores by mid-November. Multiplayer games can be played locally.
The move seems a bit strange with Nintendo already struggling with the Wii U, but there are still several games on the Wii. For someone who hasn't picked up a Wii since its 2006 launch and only wants to use it for playing games offline, the Wii mini would be a good holiday gift. Likely, this is another way for Nintendo to market itself to families looking to buy cheaper game systems for kids. However, that investment is lessened by the fact you can buy a refurbished Wii for less than the price of a new Wii mini.
In addition to the Wii mini, the statement also indicates some Wii games have been discounted. Super Mario Galaxy, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, and Super Paper Mario are $19.99. Super Mario Galaxy 2, New Super Mario Bros. Wii, and Wii Sports Resort were recently discounted to $29.99.