I can tell you this, the gap between the Wii U and the new Sony/Microsoft consoles will be nowhere as big as it was with the Wii and their current consoles. It is actually looking like they are going to use a similar setup to what the WiiU has to create a more power efficient console.
I wouldn't expect a price drop for a while and the price is more than justified once you spend some time with the Wii U Gamepad. That controller just runs my living room now.
I do agree that my 2 favorite Nintendo systems of all time are the SNES (my personal favorite) and the N64. SNES is right there with the PS2 as having the best gaming library in gaming history and the N64 IMO truly help revolutionize today's gaming scene.
As for the Wii, the biggest problem with the Wii was that they forced motion into EVERYTHING early on, and that was a mistake . . . something they tried to work on later in the life of the console but it was too late. Combine that with no DVD player, no HD support, terrible Online Infastructure and a market filled with gimmick games for kids . . . and it just watered down the library. It's hard to fully flame Nintendo for it as they introduced the casual gamer to the market (something I hope Xbox doesn't get carried away with because I want them to keep focusing on solid titles over gimmicky Kinect ones) and they have sold around 100 million consoles worldwide . . . but it's a mistake that they have clearly worked out on the Wii U by giving gamers more options. Black Ops 2 on Wii U actually has an option where you can use an Xbox controller layout if you choose (Pro Controller), or Gamepad, or WiiMote / Nunchuk (used correctly absolutely destorys anything else). People like options . . . the Wii U has them.
SNES and 64 are like 1a and 1b for me. I think the SNES had better games. My two favs are Mario RPG and Chrono Trigger. But I loved the 64, because it was the first system where you could bring over 3 buddies and spend all day playing just one game like Goldeneye or Mario Kart.
I agree about your Wii assessment. Basically it comes down to this with the Wii U....as long as 3rd party game developers don't have to create a different version of their game for the Wii U, when creating a game for the 3 systems, then the Wii U will do fine. If people can buy Madden, COD, etc on the Wii U, and it will look basically the same as the other 2 next gen consoles, then they'll be able to pitch their hits like Zelda, Metroid, Mario Party, and Mario Kart without any of the backlash.