News Article

3DS XL Represents 'The Progress of Technology'

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

More than just a super-sized 3DS

3DS XL lands in Europe and Japan a week from now, with North America joining in on 19th August. There's been a justifiable temptation for some to readily dismiss the new model as a re-scaled 3DS with no actual technological improvements. While that's a true comment in terms of processors and graphics chips, the new model does bring other improvements beyond extra large screens.

The latest Iwata Asks interview includes members of the hardware team that was responsible for developing the XL model. It's an interesting read as it highlights the design processes and issues faced while producing the system, but we've picked out two particular sections as examples. The first is from Miyatake-san, who was involved in the Design Group.

As for something we haven't touched on yet, I'd like people to look at to how some aspects of operation have improved. The A, B, X and Y Buttons, as well as the +Control Pad are bigger and thicker, making them easier to use in play. In particular, we increased the thickness of the key tops height-wise for the L and R Buttons, so they're easier to use too.

And for Start, Select and Home Buttons, I had the designers work hard so the keys sink in a seesawing action. They have a long and thin key top, and wherever you press them, they sink right in.

And compared to past devices, the feeling of size when you hold it, as well as the impression it makes when you open it, are quite different from our past devices. Even though it's big, you don't sense that. I hope people will carry it around and play it everywhere.

Two other members of the team, Murakami-san and Tanaka-san, spoke about the top screen in particular and its improvements in restricting glare and enhancing the visual effect.

Murakami: Yes. On a LCD screen there are basically three reflective layers, which all of them reflects and cause glare. So this time, we specially treated all the layers. Reflectivity on the Nintendo 3DS was about 12%, but we decreased that to about 3%.

Iwata: Why were you able to do that this time?

Murakami: Simply put, the progress of technology.

...Tanaka: I wasn't very involved with the hardware, but I think the 3DS XL's best selling point is that the larger LCD increases parallax, so players can enjoy stereoscopic 3D with greater impact. The 3D Depth Slider has more range, making it easier to adjust to your own preferences, so I hope its good aspects will reach a broader range of people.

Iwata: In that respect, games that people have already played on the 3DS may make a different impression on the 3DS XL. I played Mario Kart 7 and Kid Icarus: Uprising and was like, "Whoa!"

The question is, will 3DS XL make us go 'whoa' like Satoru Iwata? It won't be too long until we find out.


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User Comments (59)



BenAV said:

I still don't want a 3DS XL.
...But I do want Kid Icarus: Uprising 12.



LightningNexus said:

The XL looks really nice especially if those anti-glare screens are as good in removing glare as they appear to be! I'm excited for Kid Icarus- Uprising 12, but wheres 2-11?



iphys said:

Yay, less glare and better shoulder buttons. Lol, transparent 3DS XL with white D-pad and black ABXY buttons.



Nardar said:

I think it will because Mario Kart 7 and especially Kid Icarus Uprising will really make a difference. I have a DSi XL and it is awesome. Let's say I wont be surprised if it makes me go Whoa!



Mowzle said:

This is interesting information. I'm even happier that I made a decision to pre-order. Can't wait til collection day next week!



Slapshot said:

...and it's still a larger 3DS. Not to dismiss his statements, but this is nothing new. Even home consoles are tweaked with newer, cheaper technology as time progresses. While it's not as apparent on the outside, it's hardware is constantly changing, because of the "progress in technology."

I actually do want a 3DS XL, as the small screen size on the 3DS, is quite annoying, now that I've gotten used to the large screen of the PS Vita. But, I do feel that they're trying to over-hype what quite apparent, because it is, just a larger 3DS!



Mk_II said:

of course its "just" a larger 3DS. Anything else like a faster CPU or higher resolution screens would have broken the installed user base and mightily peed off 3rd party developers and almost everybody who already bought one.



ThomasBW84 said:

@Slapshot I partly agree, but I did notice a big difference when I had a shot of one of these in Edinburgh recently. I believe what they say about screen glare, for instance, as I was playing outdoors and could actually see what I was doing, whereas it can be difficult in a sun-lit room at home on my original model. It feels much better in the hand and doesn't seem heavy, probably as a result of much improved weight balancing (it says elsewhere in the full article that the new battery is relocated to a central location). The balance in the original model isn't great.

I don't think they're over-hyping in this Iwata Asks, just giving an insight into what you're saying, that new iterations can make improvements and tweaks. I guess the point is that they've done more than produce a bigger case with all of the same components, but put more thought into the actual design.



Expa0 said:

FINALLY a transparrent system! I have always thought those loook the coolest. Not getting it though, I'll manage with my fugly blue 3ds.



Ren said:

12% reflectivity?! more like 80! it's horrible. I don't get who's choice it was to use the super hi-gloss, it just looks stupid. It doesn't take the march of technology to remove hi-gloss from everything, it takes very basic good design choices. All of the first model was rushed, and we paid for it, about an extra 100$.



FonistofCruxis said:

How did so many people miss the caption for the image? Its not a new transparent 3DS, its just a 3DS XL that has been stripped apart.



WingedSnagret said:

Unless there is some sort of trade off discount for your original 3DS to "upgrade" to XL, I won't be able to get it. I've shelled out quite a bit of money as it is. But I will admit, at first I completely disregarded the XL, but now the idea has really grown on me.



BudrSbastig said:

@wingedfish if your in U.K Game and Game station have a pretty good trade in offer, get a XL and charger for £79.99 when you trade in a 3ds small.



Nestalgic said:

Baggy cargo pants are going to have to come back into fashion for me to be able to take one of these on the go.



motang said:

I am still on the fence on this one, but what will make me buy the 3DS XL is if they start offering the sliver/black on here in the states.



ThomasBW84 said:

@craigmoss19 The image of the see-through 3DS XL is from the Iwata Asks article itself. I hate to crush dreams, but they did that to demonstrate some fairly technical points about the build. It's not beyond the realms of possibility that something similar may appear as a new model in future, but I don't think it's anything more than a demo unit.



hYdeks said:

umm...isn't basicly every system after another system "the progress of technology"? sorry, but it is lol

I personally do want a 3DSxl, BUT I have no need for one, least not till my current 3ds gets destroyed somehow, till then, no thanks



PeterW77 said:

I've just got back from the Manchester comic con and managed to get a go of the 3DS XL at the Nintendo unleashed stand. I had a go of the new super Mario brothers game and found the handheld really comfortable to use and having a larger screen made viewing the 3D effect a bit easier on my eyes.

PS: I also met Warwick Davis but I'm just bragging now!



Supereor said:

Can't wait! With a large thanks to the nice fellows in the forums, I know exactly what games I'm going to play on it! =)



WiiLovePeace said:

Oh man that transparent 3DS XL is an insta-buy! Reminds me of the old see through game boy Boy did I love mine!

& I was very pleased with the info in the Iwata Asks but its just making an already long wait seem that much longer 1 month & a day remaining...



HaNks said:

lol that everybody wants the transparent XL. guess it shows you the launch colours aren't saying much. i think i'll wait for some better colours or a limited edition bundle before getting one. as much as the OG is uncomfortable, the hori wheel makes it loads better.

nintendo please make a purple majora's mask edition XL if and when the game drops, as in the fan mock-up. pleeease



sinalefa said:

I have to go read that Iwata Asks, most of the time they are really interesting, and I love the lighthearted attitude of the interviews themselves.

About the XL, I am still debating. I could use a second 3DS (I am never trading in my Ambassador 3DS) since I would not like to have my original model lost or stolen, and I would like to transfer my Heartgold Pokémon to Black 1. Hopefully Black/White 2 allows for some backwards compatibility, as most of my Pokés are on Black 1, and to transfer them all to the new cart would be a royal pain.

I have checked on the dimensions and it is just a couple of cms. bigger than the old model. Haven't seen one directly, but it seems to be much bigger in screenshots.




Haven't anti-glare screens been available on the old PSPs? Shouldn't have the original 3DS been anti-glare? Its not an innovation is it?



Lalivero said:

Bring out an orange 3DSxl and I'm sold. Of course a transparent one would look nice as well...



MeloMan said:

That's funny, I was just thinking today on the bus ride that my 3DS was reflecting too much sun making it hard to see. If they've cut it that much that's quite impressive. Reminds me of how I felt when I jumped from DS Phat to DS Lite... that did give me that "Whoa" feeling. Cash will have to simply fall in my lap for me to throw in on a 3DS XL... I've got to save my pennies for Wii U still.



Sam_Loser2 said:

I'd really like that thing, but I'm just bot going to drop $200 when I already have a 3DS.



theblackdragon said:

I must say that 'anti-glare' thing sounds appealing — been playing my 3DS lately in a room with a skylight, and the glare has been killing me quite a bit.



SamuraiShyGuy said:

The only way I'd consider getting a 3DS XL is if they actually released that clear version. It brings me back to the days of N64 and GBC/GBA.



TheConsiglio said:

I'm still not sold on the whole XL idea. Though, the select, Home, and start is actually buttons is cool and less glare on the top screen.



warvad said:

You really shouldn't have used the clear 3DS XL as the article image. My hopes, my dreams, all crushed.

I hate you Nintendo.



gundam00 said:

I would totally buy a transparent XL in a heartbeat! It reminds me of my old transparent Gameboy B&W! And I really like the transparent purple @wariowoods posted! That would be a must-buy!!



Volmun said:

i want that trace parnt 3DS! lol i have the orignal Star Wars gameboy that is the same way 8D



vdallos said:

The old ds games will look better?. I just buy it when it comes with a really interesting bundle or the silver one on sale. Meanwhile the black 3ds is ok.



Samholy said:

still wearing mine all the time. as well as cargo shorts of cargo capri. those pockets are waaaay to useful to carry things like wallets, keys,3ds,pocket change or whatever you see fit. with my pants, i dont need to carry around a small bag and have my shoulders free and arms.
screw fashion, go optimization wears.

so the 3ds XL doesnt scare me in term of size. maybe it will scare tight pants users. i prefer walking with a lot of things on me rather than showing my butt muscles to everyone.




XL isn't a progress in technology from the standard 3DS, its just bigger! I played it twice in GAME and there isn't any "Whoa" from me like there is likely to be from playing say Pikmin 3 HD on the Wii U on my 40in TV! In fact, none at all. Just a reflection on how it should've been an option at launch.



andrea987 said:

Can't wait to trade in my old aqua blue! I'm wondering if, thanks to the bigger screen, now 2 people can get the 3d effect? Anyone knows?



austin0611 said:

I h@ve a 3ds xl, BUT I THAT CLEAR VERSOIN IS WAY BETTER! I wish i could trade mine. ;_;

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