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Wii U release date and price announced for Japan

System to launch on December 8 in two models priced at 31,500 yen (£252) and 26,250 yen (£210)

Nintendo has announced a Wii U release date of December 8 in Japan.

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The news was announced by Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata during a Wii U webcast on the Japanese Nintendo Direct site, which the company also used to confirm a Wii U price tag of 31,500 yen (£252/$405) for a Premium model and 26,250 yen (£210/$338) for a Basic one.

The Premium model will come with a built-in flash memory capacity of 32GB, a Wii U GamePad, a Wii U GamePad stylus, a Wii U GamePad charging stand, a Wii U GamePad playing stand, a Wii U stand, an HDMI cable, and AC adapters for the system and controller.

The Basic model will offer a built-in flash memory capacity of 8GB, and the same contents as above minus the Wii U GamePad charging stand, Wii U GamePad playing stand and Wii U stand.

Iwata also revealed some of the Wii U's final specs. 1GB of memory is given over to games, with the same reserved for the Wii U operating system. Game discs hold 25GB of data, and the system can use up to 75W of power, though it usually runs off around 45W.

Nintendo also announced the first Wii U game prices, with New Super Mario Bros. U and NintendoLand set to be launch titles, plus prices for peripherals like the Wii U GamePad and Wii U Controller Pro.

The Japanese event will be followed up by a broadcast on the Nintendo Europe website at 3 p.m. (UK time), where full UK release and price info for Wii U is expected to be revealed.

The EU broadcast will run parallel with a New York press event where the Wii U US release date is also expected to be announced, with coverage taking place on the region's Nintendo Direct website.

Yesterday CVG spoke to five leading consultants and analysts in the games industry to examine which Wii U price point Nintendo can afford to take, and the pressures that will determine the company's decisions.

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The Nintendo Wii U is available for pre-order in the UK through: Game | Play.com | ShopTo | Tesco | Amazon

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