What originally cost ¥25,000 (about $320) at its February debut in Japan will cost just ¥15,000 (about $192) beginning August 11th. That represents a 40 percent price cut on the Nintendo 3DS. Markets outside of Japan will see a reduction sometime between July and September, though Nintendo says that the "ranges and timings of the markdowns will be different from that of Japan." The desperate move to increase volumes (Nintendo sold just 710,000 units between April and June, after selling 3.6 million in its first five weeks) comes in response to Nintendo slashing its profit forecast 82 percent after lower-then-expected sales of the handheld 3D console. Ninty's now saying that net income for the year ending March 31st may be as low as ¥20 billion, whereas the world's largest maker of video game consoles had previously estimated  ¥110 billion. Ouch.

Update: The 3DS will cost just $169.99 starting August 12th in the US, down from $249.99 at launch (a 32 percent reduction). Early adopters will receive 20 free downloadable eShop games including first access to titles like Super Mario Bros, Donkey Kong Jr, Balloon Fight, Ice Climber and The Legend of Zelda; and exclusive access to Game Boy Advance Virtual Console games like Yoshi's Island: Super Mario Advance 3, Mario Kart: Super Circuit, Metroid Fusion, WarioWare, Inc: Mega Microgame$ and Mario vs. Donkey Kong.

Source: Nintendo; via PC World