The COVID-19 coronavirus is wreaking havoc not only on lives but on events and businesses as well. The latter is mostly caused by the shutdown of factories and offices in China, perhaps the biggest proof of how many depend on the country’s products and services. This is especially true for the tech industry that has only recently started to move facilities outside of China. The latest to get hit by this situation may be a literally small console but the situation could foreshadow the trouble that gaming consoles will face in the months ahead.
Konami is the latest and perhaps last big gaming company to jump on the retro mini console scene. The TurboGrafx-16 mini, a.k.a. the PC Engine mini a.k.a. the PC Engine Core Grafx mini was a throwback to a time when the company, now more known for games, did have gaming hardware to its name. Those yearning to relive those days or even experience it for the first time in a literally small way might have to wait longer, indefinitely.
Over at its Twitter account, Konami announced that shipments of the mini console are delayed until further notice because of the situation in China. It’s unknown what stage in the production process the TurboGrafx-16 mini was before the virus broke out but the console was scheduled to ship on March 19. Given there’s no definite time when things will resume as normal, Konami isn’t making promises either.
This situation is now raising concerns whether other new consoles, namely the new Xbox and new PlayStations, will meet a similar problem. Console makers have already given warnings that new units for existing models may soon be in short supply for the same reason. Production for Microsoft’s and Sony’s next-gen consoles may not have even started yet at this point.
Other analysts, however, are more optimistic about the console’s future as these two companies have production units outside of China, even if smaller or more expensive or both. If this status quo persists beyond June, however, even those might find themselves in trouble in the long run, especially given that COVID-19 virus continues to spread in other countries as well.