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Is lackluster better than nothing? Ask Nintendo fans. In the past three decades, these troopers have suffered through almost nonexistent third-party support in at least three console generations. They’ve also endured one of the more unimpressive loyalty programs in gaming: Club Nintendo.

Today, Nintendo did something uncharacteristic with Club Nintendo, a poor product — it pulled the plug, promising to replace it in the future.

Reactions have been mixed.

Some gamers are happy with the move. Club Nintendo does offer some cool items, like limited edition posters. But other goodies, like stickers and twenty-to-thirty-year-old Virtual Console titles, aren’t as appreciated. These Nintendo fans hope that Nintendo will offer an improved loyalty program with better rewards.

On the flip side, there are some who weren’t as thrilled with today’s news. Some have a hoard of Club Nintendo coins that they fear won’t be used. Others are upset that Nintendo is ending this program without putting another one in place.

I’m feeling a little bit of both. I didn’t always like what Club Nintendo had to offer. I’m personally sitting on nearly 1,000 coins because I haven’t found a reward I’ve wanted to spend them on. But at least I was getting something, even if I didn’t always take advantage. When the program disappears on June 30 this year, gamers won’t get anything extra for purchasing titles on the Wii U or 3DS. That’s slightly troubling, especially when you consider the company’s home console is in a distant third place.

It all comes down to what Nintendo’s plan is, exactly. Both Microsoft and Sony have subscription services that offer free games and other perks. Will Nintendo travel down the same road? Could an improvement to the big N’s subpar online experience put the company in a position to charge for access? That’s something we’ll likely find out in the coming months as Club Nintendo winds down.

What do you think? Will Nintendo offer a better program? Does the company have something else up its sleeve? Sound off below.

[Source: Nintendo]

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