The earlier jealousy fades as Nintendo quietly (and perhaps prematurely) launches its stateside Club Nintendo campaign. As with Japan, the Club lets you earn points by entering the registration code found in Wii and DS games, which can then be put toward real actual prizes.
For its inaugural year, Nintendo is offering a grand prize of the exclusive DS Game & Watch Collection, which includes faithfully remade original LCD games Oil Panic, Donkey Kong, and Green House. It’s quite obviously the pick of the litter, but I can also see die-hard Nintendo enthusiasts enjoying their first opportunity to own a deck of hanafuda cards — the trade Nintendo was originally in before entering the world of games.
And, even moreso, the Mario hat DS game rack is quite nice, and those three game-card and stylus wallets, especially in the stately Club Nintendo black, are very, very handsome. Back of the envelope calculations from around the forums says the 800 points it costs you for the DS Collection equates to registering some 16 first-party Wii games or 27 DS games, though there are also opportunities to earn more points via online surveys.
The site’s still struggling to keep up with all this attention, and login problems abound, but you can at least have a closer look at the prizes while the backend sorts itself out.
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