Nintendo has found a lot of success in its NES Classic and SNES Classic mini-consoles and, based on a recent trademark filing, it looks like they may try to continue that trend with the Nintendo 64.
Over on Japanese Nintendo, they're reporting that Nintendo Japan has applied for an "N64" trademark. According to the trademark, which was included but untranslated, the filing has to do with everything from software to a game machine, joysticks and the like.
To be clear, a trademark filing does not always lead to a final product in this business, but it stands to reason that Nintendo would like to keep a good thing going. Then again, this is the company that decided a proper eShop wasn't worth the effort on the Switch, so we're not even going to pretend to understand how Nintendo makes business decisions.
Following recent events and considering the timing of this trademark, though, we think there's pretty good reason to assume Nintendo is at least toying with the idea of bringing out a Nintendo 64 Classic Edition.
For starters, both the NES Classic and SNES Classic sold like mad. Nintendo only launched like five copies of the former originally and, following tremendous demand from the fans, decided to produce even more consoles. In the interim, the SNES Classic was launched with a much larger supply, giving more folks an opportunity to yank them off of the shelf each time they were back in stock. Nintendo announced recently that the NES Classic will finally be available again starting next month, and that they plan to support both of their Classic consoles through the end of 2018.
Couple all of that with the fact that Nintendo has now filed an N64 trademark, as well as the fact that E3 is just a few weeks away, and it becomes clear why so many folks are ready to accept that another mini-console is on the horizon. Given everything we've mentioned already, we wouldn't be surprised to see a holiday 2018-19 launch for the console but, again, this is Nintendo, so they're just as likely to launch it on a random Sunday in March and only at gas stations.
If an N64 Classic Edition launches, and assuming Nintendo follows their own trend, we figure it will include the console and a single controller for about 70 bucks. Then again, we're talking about a more modern console than those past two miniscule machines, so maybe the pricing will change this time around. Also, the SNES Classic saw a sizable drop in games when compared to the NES Classic, so we're curious how many titles Nintendo would be willing to put on a system like this and still keep the price reasonable.