What is the eShop?
This is the 3DS version of the DSi Shop, or the Wii Shop Channel. The eShop will offer downloadable games for 3DS, its own version of the Virtual Console, the vast majority of the DSiWare catalogue and future releases, as well as additional content.
What setup do I need to complete?
When you launch the eShop for the first time, you will be asked to read various terms and conditions and opt in or out of some features. You will need to agree to the terms of the eShop as a whole and then you will get the opportunity to link your 3DS to your Club Nintendo account. In addition, you will be asked whether you want to opt in to receiving content and notifications via SpotPass, and also whether you are happy to share your 3DS data, such as eShop activity, with Nintendo. Whatever options you choose, you will have the opportunity to change them in ‘Settings/Other’ at the far left of the main section, or via the ‘Menu’ button.
What kind of 3DS games will be downloadable?
These will be new titles for download that are playable only on 3DS. These will include ‘3D Classics’, an example being the launch day release 3D Classics Excitebike, free until July 7th. In addition, you can also receive the free Pokédex 3D, allowing you to collect Pokémon in charming 3D. Titles in the pipeline include a new Mega Man Legends game from Capcom, while other developers of various sizes are more than likely planning to support the platform.
Tell me more about ‘3D Classics’
These will be re-mastered versions of retro titles that will make use of the 3D screen. In the case of Excitebike there are 3D effects, in terms of field of depth, as well as improved menus and overall presentation.
What platforms are supported in the eShop Virtual Console?
At present, there are only Game Boy and Game Boy Colour titles available. Other platforms such as Game Gear and TurboGrafx-16 are promised, and fans will be hoping for future confirmation of, amongst other things, Game Boy Advance releases.
Are the Virtual Console games simple duplicates of the originals, or do they include extra features?
Although the content of Virtual Console games is identical, there are some extra features to improve the overall gameplay experience.
During play, holding X or tapping the touch screen brings up the Virtual Console Menu. In this menu you can create a restore point (save point) as well as reset the game. You are limited to one restore point, though the 3DS also includes a ‘suspended state’, so that the game will pick up where you left off when you close and re-open the application.
When playing Game Boy games, if you hold the L and R shoulder buttons you can toggle the screen colour with the Y button, meaning you can play in black and white or with a green screen, replicating the look of the original Game Boy handhelds.
Finally, if you hold either Start or Select while opening a Game Boy or Game Boy Colour title, you can play the game in its original resolution. The game screen is smaller and appears within a mocked up representation of the original console; there is even a very subtle 3D effect to enjoy.
How many DSiWare games are being included in the eShop?
At launch, there are over 350 DSiWare titles available, almost the entire back-catalogue. A small number of games, such as Flipnote Studio, have not made the transition. New DSiWare games will also be released weekly on the 3DS, in addition to the DSi.
Are DSi games in 3D, or do they have enhanced graphics?
No, they perform in the same way as on the DSi. As with retail DS titles on the 3DS, they will also default to a 4:3 ratio on the top screen, rather than widescreen viewing.
Why can I only see a small number of DSiWare titles?
The menu in the eShop includes a ‘Nintendo DSiWare Highlights’ category, featuring 20 recommended titles. In order to find the remaining titles, you will need to use the Search function.
How do I search the eShop for games I want?
There are two search options available to you. First is a Search bar at the bottom of the main screen. Simply select the field, type in a partial or full game name and appropriate results will be returned. To complete a more detailed search, select ‘Menu’ at the top left of the touch screen and then ‘Software Search’. This enables you to search by Platform, Genre, Publisher or Price.
Now I want to buy a game, how do increase my balance?
One major change in the eShop is that Nintendo Points are no longer used. You now pay with cash credit, and like the DSi Shop you can either buy eShop cash directly on the shop, or with pre-paid cards from retailers. In Europe you can buy cash in batches of 10, 20 or 30 Pounds or Euro, while in North America you buy in batches of $5, $10, $20 or $50. To add money to your account, select ‘Add Funds’ from the left section of the main menu, or from the ‘Menu’ drop down at the top left of the touchscreen.
Are prices the same, per currency, in every region?
Each region has its own separate pricing in place, reflecting the tax requirements of each country, so prices do vary. In the case of the US, prices will vary depending on the state that you live in. You will be asked to enter your zip code, and will pay tax as required in your state.
Can’t I buy games on a purchase-by-purchase basis?
Unfortunately not. As with Nintendo Points, if you are a just short of enough money for a game you’ll need to buy more credit within the specified amounts.
I’ve bought a game — what now?
Much like the DSi and Wii Shop, you will begin downloading immediately. When the game is downloaded you can either continue shopping or leave the eShop. Your game will appear as a parcel to ‘unwrap’ on the main screen of the console. Once unwrapped you can either launch the game, or highlight it with the D-Pad and access the manual at the bottom of the touch screen. Some DSiWare games include the manual within the software itself.
Are all games stored and played from the SD card?
3DS software and Virtual Console games are all stored and played directly from the SD card. DSiWare games, however, are downloaded onto the system’s internal memory. You can save a copy of DSiWare games onto your SD card, but they will only be playable when they are on the system memory.
I accidentally deleted a download game from my SD card, what do I do?
If you accidentally delete your copy of a game, you can re-download it for free from the eShop. Find the product as if you are going to buy it, and if the system detects that the game is on your account but missing from your device, it will allow you to download it again.
Besides games, what additional content will I find in the eShop?
At present, the eShop contains game trailers for major 3DS releases such as Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D and Dead or Alive: Dimensions; this does vary per region. There is potential, as confirmed in various interviews and public statements from Nintendo, that download options such as film trailers and television shows will be available in the future.
What else can I do in the eShop?
The eShop does contain other features. If you scroll right on the touch screen you can see trailers for major 3DS releases, which can be viewed in 3D. Featured games also include information and screenshots, though screenshots are in 2D. To the left there is a ‘Recent Arrivals’ section to show new releases, a ‘Charts’ screen, which is yet to display results, as well as ‘Submit Reviews’ and ‘Watch List’.
‘Submit Reviews’ will allow you to conduct a basic review of download games once they’ve been played, on the 3DS (DSi game time for DSiWare does not count), for more than an hour. ‘Watch List’ allows you to keep an eye on games that you may be interested in buying. When viewing a title’s information screen you can add them to this list, so therefore you can navigate back to these games quickly if you decide to buy them. Games drop off your watch list once purchased.
Page two: DSi Transfer FAQs