After a hardware manufacturer releases a new console, it’s been a tradition that said manufacturer also releases a new form factor for their previous console. Nintendo adheres to this tradition by announcing (via Polygon) the Wii Mini coming out in December 7… in Canada.
The Wii Mini will play just about every Wii game out there, but there are some caveats though. Namely, this form factor has absolutely no internet capabilities making it impossible to even access the Wii Shop Channel where you can buy various digital games let alone play Super Smash Bros. Brawl online. Also, it doesn’t have backwards compatibility for GameCube games. This design is billed as a “family-friendly design” by the announcement.
The MSRP is set at $99.99, and unfortunately for us, they have not made any announcements about the Wii Mini being made available in other territories. Although internet connectivity was never the Wii’s strong suit, taking it out altogether certainly feels more like a cost saving feature moreso than giving players only what they need and nothing more. Not only does this move cut out their entire digital library of games, it also precludes it from being transferred over to the Wii U if they feel the need to upgrade down the road.