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Nintendo will cut prices on 3 video game systems


SAN FRANCISCO -- Nintendo of America Inc. said yesterday that it would reduce prices and start an aggressive marketing campaign aimed at increasing sales by 39 percent this year, to about $4.8 billion.

Nintendo has come under increasing pressure this year from Sega Enterprises Ltd., whose Genesis video game system, at $150, has been priced $50 lower than Nintendo's competing system, Super Nintendo.

To achieve its sales goals, Nintendo said it would commit more than $150 million to marketing support for its three systems, including $60 million for advertising.

Responding to requests from retailers, Nintendo lowered the suggested retail price of Super Nintendoyesterday to $179.95 from $199.95. The company also lowered the price of its portable system, Game Boy, to $79.95 from $89.95. Nintendo said that Super Nintendo came with two controllers; a second controller for Sega Genesis is a $25 option.

"The economic realities of today's marketplace suggest the need for even greater consumer value, and Nintendo is responding accordingly," Peter Main, vice president, marketing, for Nintendo America, said in a statement.

Sega has yet to release final 1991 sales figures, but it says that Genesis outsold Super Nintendo. Nintendo, which still has 79 percent of the video game market because of its dominance of the 8-bit machines, said yesterday that it had sold 2.1 million Super Nintendo game sets and 5.5 million software units.

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