Some people might have expected Nintendo to release a N64 Classic. After all, both the NES Classic and the Super NES Classic proved to be huge successes, meaning that it was natural for interested individuals to expect Nintendo to continue the trend by releasing a miniaturized version of the next Nintendo console to have been released. Unfortunately for those who have been waiting, Nintendo has outright confirmed that it has no plans to release a N64 Classic for the foreseeable future.
Why Isn’t Nintendo Interested in Making a N64 Classic?
As for why Nintendo isn’t interested in releasing a N64 Classic, the answer is a complicated one. In part, this is because there seems to be a number of factors that are influencing the corporation’s choice. However, it should also be noted that interested individuals don’t have perfect insight into the thoughts of the relevant decision-makers at Nintendo, meaning that much of what has been speculated is nothing more than that. Still, while interested individuals have nothing but speculation, that speculation isn’t wholly baseless, meaning that it can be worthwhile for those who are curious about the matter.
First, it is important to note that Nintendo has never seen the miniaturized versions of its consoles as a standard part of their product line-up. Instead, both the NES Classic and the Super NES Classic were supposed to serve as a bridge between the end of the Wii U and the start of the Nintendo Switch, meaning that the two miniaturized consoles were nothing more than limited time opportunities. Since the Nintendo Switch had come out by the time that Nintendo would have been in a position to launch a miniaturized version of the N64, there was no longer a point in such a product.
Second, Nintendo had other plans in mind. In short, it was interested in making its classic content available to its customers, but it is clear that it wasn’t interested in using a hypothetical N64 Classic for said purpose. This is understandable because the miniaturized consoles have some serious issues as a way for interested individuals get their hands on the games that shaped their childhoods, with an excellent example being the limited selection that was loaded onto them. In contrast, there is a much better potential option in the form of the Nintendo Switch’s eShop. While N64 games have not been made available through it at this point in time, there are some strong indications that Nintendo has big plans in mind for this particular part of its products and services, which could very well include emulated games for the N64 and other Nintendo consoles
Third, there are those who would argue that the N64 isn’t a good choice for a classic console in the same way as either the NES or the Super NES. In short, the NES featured 8-bit graphics while the Super NES featured 16-bit graphics. As a result, while both of their graphics were lacking when compared to what modern systems are capable of, it wouldn’t be a direct comparison because neither one boasted true 3D graphics. Unlike its two predecessors, the N64 Classic would’ve resulted in a much more direct comparison with modern systems, which would not have been to its advantage because of its much inferior capabilities.
Fourth, it has been speculated that there was one more reason for Nintendo’s lack of interest in making a N64 Classic, which is that the rights to some of the most famous N64 games aren’t owned by Nintendo but are instead owned by other video game companies. As a result, this line of speculation suggests that a N64 Classic would have suffered from a weak line-up of games, not least because Nintendo might not have been able to secure the rights even if it had made an attempt at doing so.
Summed up, it seems safe to say that Nintendo had understandable reasons to not release a N64 Classic even if that meant disappointing those who had been waiting for such a product after seeing the releases of both the NES Classic and the Super NES Classic. However, while Nintendo hasn’t ruled out the potential for such a product altogether, interested individuals might want to shift their focus to the Nintendo Switch’s eShop, which has a much higher chance of giving them what they want.