The Nintendo Classic was almost impossible to get your hands on at the suggested retail price, with copies of it going up on Ebay and Amazon almost instantly for 10x the price.
The system launched in November, got a ton of buzz and got a lot of people excited to own it, but was really tricky to find in stores. Nintendo announced in December that they had already sold 200,000 units.
The shortage in supply could have been an artificial shortage like Nintendo is often accused of in order to create hype and demand, or it could have been a matter of Nintendo not realizing how popular this little nostalgia box would be.
In any case, for whatever reason, Nintendo has announced that the last shipments are going out, and the product is being discontinued, much to the glee of everyone who managed to buy up a garage full of them to re-sell online.
Here is part of the statement that Nintendo released to The Verge:
“Throughout April, [Nintendo of America] territories will receive the last shipments of Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition systems for this year. We encourage anyone interested in obtaining this system to check with retail outlets regarding availability.”
Hopefully Nintendo still continues down this path, maybe they’re planning a new SNES or N64 version, or something that would combine multiple generations of retro games into one unit?