While everyone was clambering their hands on the NES Classic, the Japanese nearly did not get their Famicom Mini.
In an article by Famitsu, Nintendo representatives revealed that the Famicom Mini was initially not in the plans. Nintendo had only planned to sell the NES Classic in Europe and North America. However, when the sales department saw how the NES Classic turned out, they were impressed and decided to make a Famicom Mini for the Japanese Market.
At one point the team at Nintendo even considered to release a Famicom Disk System Mini for the Famicom’s Disk System Games. For the uninitiated, the Famicom Disk System is an add-on for the Famicom that allowed the Famicom to read and play Nintendo’s proprietary floppy disk (hopefully I don’t have to explain what floppy disk are as well…). Though it was not mentioned if the Disk System Mini was ever going to be released as a stand-alone or peripheral, or even at or, development for the Famicom Disk System Mini went as far as mockups being made.
The development team also wanted the Famicom Mini to be about 50% the size of the original Famicom, just like the NES Classic was 50% the size of the original NES. However, due to physical constrains of the circuit board and controllers, the end product was slightly bigger than planned at 60%.
Another interesting tidbit uncovered was that the NES Controller was supposed to be USB, but instead Nintendo decided to go with the proprietary Wii-mote port for safety and standardisation.
The full interview between Famitsu and Nintendo representatives is a long 3 pages, spanning many other topics. If you are interested, and can read Japanese, do head down to the interview here to check it out.