Nintendo game demonstrators play tennis
Robyn Beck  /  AFP - Getty Images file
Nintendo game demonstrators play tennis with Nintendo's new "Wii" (pronounced "we") home console which lets users manipulate action on their television screens through the precise, life-like motion of the handheld Wii Remote, 10 May 2006, at the 2006 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Wii will be available in the fourth quarter of 2006.
msnbc.com staff and news service reports
updated 5/25/2006 6:02:55 PM ET 2006-05-25T22:02:55

Nintendo of America confirmed pricing rumors for their next generation console on Thursday.

The company announced that their new machine, Wii, would not exceed $250 in America. Nintendo also said it plans to ship 6 million systems between its launch in the fourth quarter of 2006 and the end of its fiscal year in March 2007.

Earlier this month at the Electronics Entertainment Expo, Sony said their upcoming Playstation 3 console would debut in two versions priced at $499 and $599 in November. The two versions of Microsoft's Xbox 360, released last fall, sell for $299 and $399.

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Nintendo’s profit jumped 12.5 percent for the fiscal year through March as a foreign exchange gain and robust sales of handhelds offset shrinking sales of home consoles. But its share price dropped 7.3 percent on the Japanese video-game maker’s disappointing forecast for the year ahead.

Nintendo has taken a different approach from its rivals in offering what it calls more intuitive, or easier-to-play, games, such as virtual pets and brain teasers, to attract older people, women and others usually not associated with gaming.

Sales of Nintendo’s home machine GameCube haven’t kept up lately, totaling just 2.35 million consoles for the fiscal year just ended, but the company is planning its upgrade home console, called Wii, for later this year.

But the company said it hopes to attract larger audiences with its latest machine. Wii has a controller that allows players to use it without manipulating a complex set of buttons, such as swinging it like a fishing rod or a sword.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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