Its no secret that, ever since its launch, the Nintendo 3DS has not sold very well.  Blame has been placed on over priced hardware, low battery life, 3D being just a fad, and weak launch titles.  No matter the reason, the handheld from the house that Mario built has not done as well as its predecessors.  Nintendo has responded.

The price of the Nintendo 3DS has been dropped from $249.99 to $169.99 ($80) in an effort to stimulate sales.  This is a revolutionary policy for Nintendo, who are now taking a loss on a console for the first time in their history.

But what about 830,000 consumers who bought early and paid the extra $80 when the Nintendo 3DS was first launched, only to find that if they waited they would have received a lower price?

Well, Nintendo isn’t giving any refunds based on the price drop – however, they have announced that anyone who logs in to the Nintendo eShop before 11:59pm, Eastern Time, August 11th (the day before the price is officially lowered) will get free access to Nintendo’s new ‘Ambassadors’ program.  Access to the program gives members access to 20 free games.  Some of the free Gameboy games offered in this program will never be made available to the general public, according to Nintendo.

A partial list of the free games that will be released to current Nintendo 3DS owners include Super Mario Bros, Ice Climber, Donkey Kong Jr., The Legend of Zelda, and Balloon Fight, set for release on September 1. Game Boy Advance games: Yoshi’s Island: WarioWare, Inc: Mega Microgame, Mario Kart: Super Circuit, Metroid Fusion,Super Mario Advance 3, and Mario vs. Donkey Kong are to be released later this year.