News Article

Round Table: Let's Talk About the 3DS

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

You've come a long way, little one

So, the 3DS approaches its third E3 in good shape, having passed its second Birthday while enjoying a run of strong sales worldwide. It also has a games library, both current and coming in the next six months, in exceptionally rude health; the upcoming lineup in 2013 is packed with potential blockbuster hits, so much so that Nintendo plans to sell 18 million hardware units in the current financial year. It's all a far cry from the doom and gloom of Summer 2011, when sales were tanking and some were calling time on dedicated handhelds.

How times change — hopefully a sign for the future potential of the Wii U — and now the 3DS is basking in the glow of positive press and serving as the backbone of Nintendo's business. As the coming weeks are likely to have a big focus on the Wii U and its campaign for success, we thought we'd take this opportunity to contemplate the 3DS as it stands today, and what could come in the future.

Joining features editor Tom Whitehead — for possibly the most crowded round table Nintendo Life has ever seen — are reviews editor Mike Mason, editor at large Jon Wahlgren, events coordinator Katy Ellis, news reporters Andy Green and Orla Madden, U.S. reviewers Ron DelVillano, Morgan Sleeper, Stephen Kelly and Dave Letcavage, and contributors Gaz Plant, Ken Barnes (also editor of sister-site and Martin Watts.

We had a good long chat, so grab some snacks and join us.

Tom Whitehead: First off, can everyone please introduce themselves to the readers?

Mike Mason: I'm Mike, reviews editor and slave to my backlog.

Jonathan Wahlgren: I'm Jon, Nintendo Life editor at large and a somewhat organic human being.

Ken Barnes: Hi, I'm Ken, and I'm the Editor at

Ron DelVillano: I'm Ron, a US reviewer with the site’s most handsome beard.

Morgan Sleeper: Hi! I'm Morgan, I review games and drink an awful lot of tea.

Orla Madden: Hi, my name is Orla, and I'm a News Contributor and currently in rehab for playing too much Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate.

Gaz Plant: Hi I'm Gaz, probably the only person in the world who is still trying to finish collecting all the Kid Icarus: Uprising AR cards.

Andy Green: I'm Andy, I do the news and I've just had to soft reset in Fire Emblem: Awakening... again.

Martin Watts: Hi, I'm Martin and I'm a contributor. Like Orla, I too am suffering the effects of being addicted to Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate.

Katy Ellis: Hi I'm Katy, and I just want to take a moment to confess to Orla that no, I still haven't completed Skyward Sword. Shame on me.

Orla: For shame...

Gaz: So you haven't seen that bit where [REDACTED] yet?

Dave Letcavage: I’m Dave, US Reviewer at Nintendo Life and sometimes contributor on PureXBOX.

Stephen Kelly: Hi! I’m Stephen Kelly, US reviewer for downloadable things. Also a Sonic the Hedgehog apologist.

Tom: And I'm Tom, the features editor that has the misfortune of transcribing these round tables. So we're catching up to talk about the 3DS - first of all, let's start off with the big question. What do you think of the 3DS right now, in just a couple of short sentences?

Ken: The 3DS is clearly the dominant force in the handheld market, and the software available for it means that it's in that position based on merit, rather than advertising.

Mike: 3DS has really come into its own over the last few months — the line-up is looking fantastic, and I carry mine around with me everywhere. That said, I still don't have the same buzz from it as I did from DS. It's still going to take some beating, but with Animal Crossing: New Leaf, Pokémon X / Y and Ace Attorney 5 coming in the near future, it might not take too long to change my mind...

Katy: The Japanese 3DS is now officially superior as it has 3D Altered Beast on the eShop.

Orla: I think it's finally hitting its stride, fantastic line-up of games, with a great summer ahead!

Jon: I think it's just swell. I spend most of my spare gaming time on it nowadays — not just because I have a long commute but because its library is filled with fantastic time-sucks. Especially lately, posting dozens of hours each with Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, Fire Emblem: Awakening and Animal Crossing: New Leaf.

Ken: I've not played any handheld game as much as I've played Fire Emblem: Awakening , ever.

Stephen: The 3DS is my go-to system of choice. If I’m not playing something on Steam, that’s where I’ll be.

Martin: I'm really impressed with the system; the software library is packed full of solid titles, and I think the upcoming release schedule is really looking strong.

Orla: Animal Crossing: New Leaf. 'Nuf said.

Ron: There's so much that I could say about how great the 3DS is right now, but I'll put it simply - I use it every day, and I never leave the house without it.

Katy: Aww Ron, that's so sweet!

Ron: Thanks, Katy. And don't make jokes about Altered Beast. I'm very serious about that game.

Katy: You KNOW that was no joke!!

Morgan: It's my favourite modern system. I've always got something I'm looking forward to playing on the 3DS, and like Ron, I never leave home without it - StreetPass is the best thing to happen to handhelds since backlit screens!

Gaz: It's finally making good on the promises Nintendo made two years ago, and it's got probably the strongest line-up any Nintendo system's ever had still to come

Andy: I personally think the 3DS is the best console on the market right now full stop. It might even be my favourite system of all time - sorry Martin, you know I love the N64 a lot, but man, look at the line-up on the 3DS!

Martin: Andy, I think I can forgive you — it really is a cracking little system!

Dave: I would have to agree with Andy. At this point in time, I think the 3DS is the best console on the market, handheld or otherwise. I honestly haven’t enjoyed a library of games this much since the Nintendo 64.

Tom: For my part, I generally agree that it's come into its own. I actually think the limited tech is in its favour, as clearly development turnaround and budgets are reasonable.

I think Ken made a good point about the system being there on merit, and not due to advertising. Is this a case of an evolving library hitting its marks, or is it unfair to suggest that Nintendo's press and advertising efforts don't deserve more credit?

The software alone is driving the hardware, which in turn drives more software. Beautiful position to be in for Nintendo.

Morgan: As someone who's never seen a single 3DS advert outside of YouTube, I'd say Ken's right on there. I know advertising helps get the name out there, but I feel like with Nintendo's handhelds especially, it's word-of-mouth and big games that really get things going.

Gaz: Let's face it, Nintendo's advertising was all over the place at launch. No system should have the tagline "this is not DS, it's 3DS" (or similar) to emphasise what it is. But as Nintendo always show, games drive sales, and they brought that in spades.

Ken: I think Nintendo's press and advertising is terrible, frankly. Lifestyle adverts is all they have in the locker. The system's software line-up is hitting its marks, whereas the PS Vita - which has some decent games - is suffering from having a library which is somewhat thin in comparison.

Ron: Obviously press and advertising has had something to do with it, that's what it's there for. But I also think it's a matter of gamers recognizing a great portable console when one finally shows up. The 3DS had a slow start, but once it started picking up games, gamers took notice.

Ken: The software alone is driving the hardware, which in turn drives more software. Beautiful position to be in for Nintendo.

Dave: It’s all about the games. Sure, the advertising plays a part in the grand scheme of things, but right now Nintendo is making games for gamers and finding great success in doing so.

Jon: If it doesn't have any games to advertise then marketing can only go so far. Without a critical mass of great games the handheld would be dead in the water, although by now I think that critical mass has been achieved.

Mike: I'd put most of 3DS's success firmly at the door of the library so far. There have been some good advertising bids for the likes of Luigi's Mansion 2, but really I think it's word of mouth and strong titles more than anything. Nintendo Directs have definitely helped, though — they've built hype within the core, and I think from there positive feedback has filtered out to others. The clever giveaway promotions are sure to have given it a boost, too: the most recent "Too Many Games" initiative is a smart reminder of the packed line-up that also serves as something of a consumer friendly goodwill gesture.

Andy: I think Nintendo has been pretty smart with its marketing for the 3DS to be honest, a few good promotions to build up a user base followed by plenty of games for people to buy. Not to mention the fact there really is a game for all tastes on the console!

Martin: I've got to agree with Gaz and Ken, Nintendo's advertising efforts are poor. It's really down to the first-party games, which seem to have received endless critical acclaim. It's the quality that seems to be driving people to the system.

Katy: While advertisement is obviously important, I agree with Ken that it's mostly down to the excellent line-up of games on offer which has driven the 3DS' sales and success.

Tom: I think Nintendo's initiatives have been clever, which I think Andy's referencing, such as the free game offers. Plus Nintendo Direct broadcasts are still genius, and the 3DS one a while ago was outstanding.

Gaz: Nintendo Direct has certainly been important, but so has getting games people want on shelves. Look at NSMB2, it wasn't what we all wanted really, but boy did it drive sales.

Katy: However, Nintendo Directs mostly only target a specific and dedicated section of Nintendo's market. The average consumer probably won't have seen or even heard about them!

Tom: True, Katy.

Martin: That's true, Tom. But given that games like Luigi's Mansion 2 and Lego City: The Chase Begins are seeing considerable sales success — heck, even Fire Emblem: Awakening reached No. 3 in the UK charts — it's got to be something beyond the Nintendo Directs which are for a very specific audience.

Andy: Indeed, Nintendo has obviously decided to put more of its budgets into promotional activities, relying a little on word of mouth instead of big money advertisements on TV, which isn't working as well as it used to for the video game industry.

Orla: I agree. The 'Buy 3 get 1 free' promotion was a great move. And like Gaz said, Nintendo Direct has been vital for the 3DS.

Andy: Fire Emblem: Awakening did hit number 3! Although I did buy a few spare copies...

Gaz: I'm worried for you Andy...

Katy: I seriously need to grab a copy of Fire Emblem - all this chat is making me extremely envious!

Orla: I picked it up last week, must finish Luigi's Mansion 2 first...

Ken: Oh, Katy - do it ASAP. Simply amazing game.

Andy: I can't run the risk of it permadeathing on me, Gaz. I just can't!

You should pick it up Katy, I've already married 4 people off!

Orla: Andy, Vicar of Manchester...

Martin: I'm embarrassed to admit that I haven't even taken the plastic wrap off my copy of Fire Emblem: Awakening. Truth be told, I'm saving it for when I have a ton of free time so that my playthrough isn't interrupted! I thought the demo was fantastic.

Stephen: It’s a chicken or the egg question: Do Nintendo handhelds sell because they have great games, or are great games supported and viable because the systems sell? I think the brand lit the fire, but the games are the fuel.

Tom: So games are key, of course. How do you think this sweet spot has come about? Is it that the 3DS titles utilise the tech for unique experiences, that they're so different from what other platforms offer? Or is that bunkum, that it's really just down to quality design?

Mike: Quality design for the most part. I can't really think of many games that have really taken advantage of the 3D or StreetPass in massively exciting ways.

Stephen: If the 3DS’ full library was on the PS Vita, would there really be a good reason to not jump ship? When push comes to shove, it’s all about the games!

Gaz: I've got to be honest, I don't feel the 3D adds anything. Sure it looks nice, but the games are the same. And that's the key point - the games are just quality titles built for a handheld system. I'm not sure what Nintendo have done, but they, and third-parties, have really got their heads around the tech.

Morgan: I'm apparently in the minority but I love the 3D effect! I leave it on all the time, and I miss it when I move to my Vita; it kills me that I can't play Gravity Rush in 3D. But that aside, I do think it's all about the games. And I agree that the best games seem to be tailor made for the portable format. Dark Moon's 20 minute missions are perfect to play before bed (especially if it's raining!) and even though I've sunk an unhealthy amount of time into Fire Emblem, I tend to do it a mission at a time.

Martin: I don't think the tech really has anything to do with it. I think it's a lot more simple than that, namely the games are engaging, fun and quite in-depth for portable experiences.

Ron: Well, I had to Google what "bunkum" meant, but I'd say it's bunkum. I think the 3DS's "wow factor" wears off pretty quickly, then people just see great games and want to play them.

Ken: Quality design, I'd say. 3D does nothing for me if I'm honest. I play with it off. The fact is that I would buy Fire Emblem, Luigi's Mansion 2, and a few notable others, no matter what system they were on, picking up the system at the same time if needed. They're THAT good as games.

Jon: Apart from stereoscopic 3D and StreetPass there really isn't anything that 3DS can do that virtually any other console can't — even Vita has a StreetPass-like feature in Near — so I think it's less about the hardware enabling unique experiences and more that developers have really hit a lot of titles out of the park. Perhaps it’s a feeling of increased pressure from the competition — Nintendo's own games certainly feel like they go out of their way to show that dedicated portable hardware still has a lot to offer.

Martin: I think it's also helped by the fact that there are very few other portable/mobile experiences that match the quality seen in Ninty's first-party 3DS titles.

Orla: I barely use the 3D too, if I'm honest, or very rarely if I do. It's the quality of the titles for me, hard to put down and I love that I can take it with me wherever I go too.

Andy: I think it's just down to great games from stellar franchises. The 3D can be done brilliantly, like on Fire Emblem: Awakening and Luigi's Mansion 2 - and not to mention the upcoming Zelda, but I think it adds to the experience rather than creates it. I promise to stop banging on about Fire Emblem now...

Katy: I agree that the 3D element isn't the driving force, I'd say the fact that the Vita hasn't really done as well as Sony would have hoped have meant that the 3DS is THE place for gamers to get their handheld fix. There's just so many great, quality games on offer!

Gaz: See, I ALWAYS use 3D. And I mean always. I think it makes the games look better and I love the effect. But it doesn't change the gameplay, and that's what makes a game good.

Tom: I'm not really thinking of the 3D screen, tech wise, but the horsepower of the thing. This might get me shot, but a lot of the games have a simple, retro feel with modern touches, which I think engages the current day audience. Recently we've had a GameCube sequel, a turn-based strategy title, we've had 2D platformers. Hell, Uprising's flying sections are Space Harrier-esque. You just don't get these kinds of games on other systems, because they're all trying to show off processing power.

Dave: I’m glad you said that, Tom. I’ve been telling people for the past year that the experiences found on the 3DS remind me of playing N64 games. Icarus, 3D Land, and Dark Moon – to name a few – are games built around pure gameplay with no intruding gimmicks. I think Nintendo is winning back a major audience that they may have lost with the forced motion controls of the Wii.

Andy: You can play Monster Hunter on the 3DS, which helps too.

Gaz: While I do agree there are a few retro feel titles on 3DS, I dunno if that's the trademark of the system. To me the games all feel like bite-sized console experiences, squashed into a portable system.

Ken: See, I don't even think that they're necessarily bite-sized. I've thrown HOURS into Fire Emblem, NSMB2, Luigi's Mansion and the like. More time than 95% of the "full-size" console games I play.

Martin: Definitely, and despite being like console experiences, they just work well on the 3DS. Many of the games it's easy to come back to in small chunks.

Gaz: Oh yeah, but I meant in terms of level structure and pacing.

Andy: I think the 3DS actually offers games that are as good as home console games... Look at Ocarina of Time... Simply stunning on the 3DS! I mean, we've reached the point where Capcom are porting to home consoles from the 3DS...

Ken: I don't think Capcom porting a Resident Evil title because they've run out of ideas can be used as an example...

Andy: Well it's still a game developed for the 3DS moving over to PS3 etc…

Ken: I take the point!

Tom: I don't think many of the upcoming line-up or those recent hits would fly on Wii U, for example, I really don't. I think that's a strength, that the relatively limited capabilities are driving games back to focus on what's fun. When I look at Vita, it's bundled with FIFA, Assassin's Creed, CoD. Those work better on a home console, the reverse (3DS working better on Wii U) just wouldn't happen. That's what makes it unique.

And Revelations is better on 3DS, because it was designed for it.

Gaz: Kid Icarus Uprising perhaps being a notable 3DS title that deserves a Wii U version (or is that just me?)

Martin: I don't think you're alone there, Gaz!

Orla: Not just you Gaz, trust me...

Katy: I think I'm the only one here who hated Kid Icarus Uprising... Well, maybe hate is a strong word.

Ron: I got bored with it real quick.

Orla: You're trying to start an uprising, Katy...

From the web

User Comments (98)



JayArr said:

I haven't touched my 3DS in almost a year. >.>
I hope they reveal something I can't resist buying at E3.



Dizzard said:

3DS is finally coming into it's own this year....and it's not even finished with the great games either: Animal Crossing, New Leaf, Shin Megami Tensei, Ace Attorney, Pokemon XY, Bravely Default, Phoenix Wright vs Professor Layton (?), Fantasy Life (?), Youkai Watch (?) and those are only the ones I'm personally interested in.

The ? are because I'm not sure if we'll get them...but they're more possible because Nintendo said they wanted more Japan made games to make it across + the eShop makes it easier to localize games that wouldn't otherwise.

It's hard to keep up with them all, kinda annoying how the first two years were so quiet and now everything is coming at once....



Shadow100 said:

I've had tons of hours of fun on my 3DS, and know I will get plenty more in the rest of its life



stealth said:

3DS is doing great

2014 has

bravely default
smash bros likely

thats enough



Shadow100 said:

@stealth I doubt Smash Bros. will release next year, unless they rush its release.
Brawl was delayed quite a bit, iirc.



Collision_Cat said:

@JayArr I don't know how you've managed that my moogley friend, when there are so many great games being released for it this year!



Cotton said:

I'm with Orla and Martin I have put about 90 hours in monster hunter but I'm not even half way done (I really like free hunting)



cbkummer said:

I am SO GLAD I purchased a 3DS. My only regret is I didn't get it before the price cut, as playing GBA games on it would turn it into gaming Nirvana for me. I've been gaming since the NES days, and my 3DS has the largest library I've ever owned (It helps that I don't have to ask my parents to buy me games anymore). I will own and use this thing well past its life cycle, I'll probably play it until I break it, like my poor beaten up GBC.



Ralizah said:

"Stephen: If the 3DS’ full library was on the PSP Vita, would there really be a good reason to not jump ship? When push comes to shove, it’s all about the games!"

PSP Vita, the DS3's major handheld competitor!



MAB said:

I haven't played anything on the XL since getting the WiiU and nothing else has sparked up any interest like RE Mercs/Revelations online & Heroes of Ruin... The next game will be Cult County for me



Aloth said:

I am really happy about my 3ds, what I hate is this week release of old titles, they should release more gb, gbc even snes every week. Why cant I play castlevania 4 on my 3ds?
I havent got the altered beast on the japanese 3ds, it doesnt interest me, but I will get hang on or sonic.



Mollutje said:

I'm a big fan of my 3DS, lovely little console. I'm taking a little break from it at the moment to finish up the titles I still had lying around for Wii U, but I'm certainly going for the "too many games"-promotion. Now all I need to do is get my girlfriend one as well, so I can finally experience some local multiplayer fun!



Xjarnold said:

The 3ds is here to stay and will be going strong for a long time, once pokemon x and y get here, there will be absolutely no reason to not pick up a 3ds. Not to say that fire emblem and uprising aren't killer apps themselves



Zach777 said:


You must be a tough one to please, good sir. Either that or your taste for video games is so out there that not even your genre of choice has been breached by the gargantuan 3DS library as of late. Perhaps you might reconsider, sir, your video game values?



hYdeks said:

lol, I don't think you guys really needed to re-introduce yourselves. I haven't beaten Skyward Sword either, I feel terrible

I love the 3DS' game library, I had an original 3DS and didn't like it and sold it, but than the 3DS XL came out and now I'm jealous of people I see with one lol Instead, I own a Vita and so far, that has been a big waste of money. I have 7 games for it, and all I ever play on it is Sonic and All Star Racing I miss playing Super Mario 3D Land, alone

@Cotton love your icon! GIR!!! They need to bring Invader Zim back...



Dpullam said:

The Nintendo 3DS is easily becoming one of my favorite gaming systems of all time due to one thing that some of the editors mentioned as well. This system reminds me of the Nintendo 64 days when games were purely about the gameplay and having fun. I was just recently playing some of my games on the N64 and I was thinking to myself, they don't make games that are this fun very often anymore. At least for me they don't.

There are some recent games that still use that tradition, but they are far less frequent than they used to be. As a result, the Nintendo 3DS is a godsend for my gaming time. I would be pretty happy if Nintendo kept up the killer amount of games that they have released thus far for the indefinite future. At the very least, this is going to be one incredible year for gaming on my Nintendo 3DS.



Dpishere said:

@Dpullam I agree with everything you said, especially the N64 comment. Other than Nintendo, most companies don't make games designed purely for fun, and that is why I have always had more fun on Nintendo consoles than any others.



Parasky said:

I like my 3DS, but I wouldn't say I love it, as it's build quality is rather poor. The d-pad is horrible and chipped and there are lots of scratches on the system. I'm waiting for E3 for a 3DS plus.



Prof_Elvin_Gadd said:

The 3DS is swiftly becoming my favorite handheld console of all-time. I think I'll even use it for my new Dual-Scream design. The ghosts will pop out and scare that skinny Italian brother! Hehe. He is brave though, or more brave than he looks! King Boo was no slouch.



P-Gamer-C said:

I love my 3ds too but its kind of sad that nintendo's handheld is more relivent than there home console



DualWielding said:

3DS is the best console ever, Nintendo should give up on the Wii U and concentrate on the console that'll be putting food on their table for the rest of this generation



Kirbybrawl said:

Im always playing starfox 3d trying to beat my high score atleast once a week, play mario tennis with my brother online, mk7 and i just picked up donkey kong last night. I still havent finished luigis mansion yet so i have a good amount of games i can play for a while.especially when animal crossing comes out. Im having so much fun playing 3ds this year and i still have games like kirby mass attack and super star that i want to replay again when i finish donkey kong.



Sakura said:

Nintendo consoles rule the roost for me. Most games are essentially puzzle-solving of some kind or another - where to jump, who to target with which weapon, where the secrets are in a level, more traditional brain puzzles like in Professor Layton, who to form an alliance with, what you need to collect to complete a task...etc Nintendo are always, in my opinion (and it's only an opinion), the best at finding new ways to innovate gameplay. I love that you can play games like Trauma Centre or Phantom Hourglass using the touchscreen, Fire Emblem and Mario with the buttons, rhythm games, RPGs, text-heavy games like Hotel Dusk and Phoenix, open world games like Animal Crossing, collection games and shooters. There's something for every taste at every age. And most games (with a few exceptions) are a perfect fit for the console whatever their genre.

And there's spotpass and streetpass connectivity that generates a sense of community in the way that no other console can. I take out my console in my bag and get (perhaps lamentably given my age) happy when the green light flashes. I get puzzle pieces and enhancements for games from other players. It's a great system.

Only thing that lets it down is the lack of special mii releases! When, o when, Nintendo UK?



AltDotNerd said:

Nintendo needs to develop some connectivity between the 3DS and the Wii U. I liked Mr. Miyamoto's idea of using the 3DS as a controller for the Wii U.



Lostog said:

for me the e-shop is fundamental. ok, i didn't even know of its existence when i got it, didn't even have a wifi connection, but once i got one and discovered the eshop, and later eshop cards, it became fundamental, as i'm more at ease spending 15 euros for two games than 40 for one. if i was more stable i would buy more retail games, but for now i'm ok with an eshop game once in a while (and once in a wider while, a retail one that really interests me, if there's good wind)



daggdroppen said:

the 3DS is my favorite of all handhelds of all time!!

and it has only lived for 2 years. count 4 more fruityful years =)



Funny_Moblin said:

@ferthepoet Never. Remember the people who also like large flat screen TVs, and sharing gaming experiences with family and friends. I suppose I could understand your point of view since you must be a lone gamer.
And don't forget how the 3DS was selling poorly at the beginning just like Wii U is at the moment. Wii U will eventually put food on the table too. Why focus on one handheld console, when you can get double the money in the near future.



BossBattles said:

I had no doubt the 3DS would have a great library of games.

Same goes for the Wii U. Just wait....the Wii U will have the same article written about it after its been out 2 years.



crazyj2312 said:

I'm just glad capcom decided to use the 3ds as a platform for MH3U and allowed the audience for the game to expand in the west with nintendo. and it was successful enough to get MH4 exclusively on the system too.



Silverbullet89 said:

I just bought a 3DS XL along with Fire Emblem: Awakening and soon to be Ocarina of Time 3D. Needless to say I'm already in love with it



Tasuki said:

I have to say the 3DS is quickly becoming one of my favorite consoles of all time.



Ispheria said:

i got mine on the first day and i've gotta say that i have much more hours on my 3ds then i do on any other system. over 300 hours on monster hunter, and 200+ on KI:U. didn't spend much time on oricarina of time, after i beat it i sort of got bored, and fire emblem was too easy on lunatic because of how OP kellam and and the dragon girl was, though their conversations were pretty entertaining. personally though, what i would like more than anything on the 3DS is another Tales of game, and not a straight up port like Tales of the Abyss. i'd really like a completely new Tales of game exclusive for the 3ds



idork99 said:

Excellent round table!

Page 1 - If I were a stranger to NL, I would write off the website as a bias, Nintendo-loving bunch! But since I visit the site regularly, I know that the comments are honest .

Page 2 - I'd have to disagree with the majority of you as I personally feel the eShop is an essential success to the 3DS. Yes, I was one of the few that said I'd never buy digital over retail but my 3DS tells the story. Out of all the games I own and all the time that I spend with the system, the eShop is in the top five of apps played! Why?! Because I was one of those snobby kids in the retail store that retailers hated: the kid that would want to look at every game and not buy a single one. Let's admit it, we all love window shopping. And with the eShop, it's giving my ten year old self a fix. I was the kid that loved to read the back of the boxes and look at the still images to give myself a taste of what the game was like. With the eShop, not only do I get to read and look at still images, but also look at videos of gameplay which help me better decide my gaming purchases. So, yes, the eShop is good and can be better with more games: both old and new.

Page 3 - In regards to the trajectory of the 3DS's lifespan, reading on this matter actually made me think of the past. It reminded of the DS phat and DS lite days. When the first DS came out, people were not all into it. Once the DS lite came, the DS was in full stride and didn't make any hardware changes for nearly three years (DSi). I see the same thing happening now. The first 3DS did not "Wow" people because of the small screen and the difficulty of finding that sweet spot for the 3D. Plus, many were confused that it was just another DS! Ever since the XL model came out (along with NSMB2), the 3DS has been in a better trajectory and people are more comfortable with the new size for both ergonomic and visual reasons. All in all, I see no new model for a 3DS for at least another two years. Not a new system, but a new model (with one circle pad ). If all goes accordingly, I don't expect to see a new portable from Nintendo (3DS+) until the year 2017-18.



bassoongoon said:

I would love to hear about F-Zero coming out on both the Wii U and 3DS.

Man, I can't wait to buy a 3DS.



zool said:

Jon: Apart from stereoscopic 3D and StreetPass there really isn't anything that 3DS can do that virtually any other console can't

......try putting an xbox in your pocket.



Doma said:

If SMT4 actually gets released in EU before 2014, i'll be satisfied with the year's output. Much better than last year's 2 worthy games, at least.

I'll be praying for surprise Metroid and Advance Wars E3 announcements... otherwise those series can probably officially be declared as dead (to be buried beside Fzero and Starfox, R.I.P.)



Yoshi3DS said:

am i the only one that prefers getting a game with its case rather than from the eshop



blackknight77 said:

I'm happy with the 3DS library. I have a good collection and there are still titles like DOA and Castelvania which I have yet to pick up



thepitt said:

I've been watching this little system since its incarnation and though I'm not too thrilled about the "3D" aspect (it gives me motion sickness which is a precursor to a seizure), the New Mario Bros 2 and Donkey Kong Country games look fantastic. It wasn't until I saw videos of a new Zelda - Link to the Past (one of my favourite SNES games - I stayed up night/day and went to Middle School at the same time until I beat it) that I actually started getting interested in the console.

With Mario, Donkey Kong and Zelda I think my wait has paid off as I can now get a 3DS XL for less then the price of the original 3DS. It does pay to wait to buy these thing you know



Gregor said:

Jon: Apart from stereoscopic 3D and StreetPass there really isn't anything that 3DS can do that virtually any other console can't
...I think they are forgetting WHY the system has DS in its name...



Bucbanzai said:

I have been amazed at how many games I have bought for my 3DS as well as how much I play it just when I have 10-20 mins here and there. I don't need the 3d to play any of the games but it ands so much to the immersion when playing I can't imagine being without it. The depth makes me feel more a part of the action. The battery is the biggest disappointment of the whole thing. My whish list of games that are out is huge and the new ones coming out are simply going to add to it.



Will-75 said:

I currently have a little more than 170 titles downloaded from eshop to my 3DS , and I have 20 titles I've purchased in hard copy form I've never owned a system that I had that much software for in a year and ahalf time frame as well I play mine daily the 3DS simply ROCKS ! I love mine , Fav system of all time for me ..



gavn64 said:

No real love for RESI's raid mode from the team shame.

next year give me Advance wars, Smash bros., a sequel to 3D LAND, Pikmin Portable™, Miiverse 3DS, Donkey Kong Crash Course 3DS as a small eshop title with more boards and i would be set.

P.S to Ken stop being a troll leave the Wiiu alone



Zodiak13 said:

As an owner of almost every system that a decent amount of games, I have found that I have played more hours on my DS/3DS than any gaming system, with a possible excepetion being the SNES. Even than I still think the DS/3DS wins out. Favorite system ever?? No, that will always be the DC for me. but my 3DS comes closer than I would have though a year or 2 ago.



Lin1876 said:

MiiVerse, unified accounts and Neo-Geo Pocket and GBA games on Virtual Console and my life will be complete. It's a great wee system right now.



sinalefa said:

What I don't agree with is mentioning new Nintendo IPs on 3DS as something so rare. So far we have seen Pushmo, the Rolling Western, Sakura Samurai and I could even include Harmoknight. Wii U is an entirely different thing, though....

I am very happy with my 3DS and I haven't picked up things that seem to hook people so much like MH or Fire Emblem. I may get the latter, though. Don't care about Miiverse on Wii U and don't care about it here, although I like having more sales on eShop as of late.



Giygas_95 said:

The 3DS is one of the best Nintendo consoles since the SNES in my opinion. It has so many incredible games!

About the eshop, I think it's an important part of the system at least for me. I have a lot of download only and retail download games (which I do wish could be backed up by some sort of account system). A lot of great titles on the 3DS might not exist without the eshop so it's an important part of it for me. I can't wait for Miiverse. About streetpass, I just wish that puzzle swap didn't allow you to get the same puzzle pieces over again, and especially I wish it didn't have the pink pieces. I get so few streetpasses where I live that it's virtually impossible for me to finish a lot of those puzzles, and I really want to finish some of them like LMDM or The Last Ranger.

@zipmon "Hi! I'm Morgan, I review games and drink an awful lot of tea." I hear you on the tea. I drink unsweet every day, it's so good!



Arcamenel said:

I'm definitely getting a lot more use out of my 3DS than I did my DS lite but to be fair I only got that for Pokemon. I don't own a Wii U but Miiverse does seem like something I would get a lot of use out of so definitely hope that comes to the 3DS soon.

side note: I wish people would stop asking for a second circle pad. 30 million+ units sold at this point with at least a couple million more to be bought once big titles like AC:NL and Pokemon X/Y come out, I don't see Nintendo turning around and releasing a new handheld(because in my mind that's what it'd be) and give a big eff you to those who bought one early.



andjahiam said:

having a wii u and a 3ds, i have to say that i am equally pleased at owning both. the wii u is a baby still and needs time to mature, such as 3ds did last year. Wii U offers things that i dont like or dont have on my 3ds, such as amazing web browser- the 3ds pales in comparison. My Wii library, especially VC games. There are some for 3ds i dont have for Wii or Wii U, but i have a vaster collection on my Wii which i transfered over to Wii U. Wii U chat, and absolutly a must have, miiverse. i use my Wii U about as much as my 3ds. My3ds is amazing and i cant game without it, as it offers things i cant find on my wii u, GB/C games on VC, 3D GOODNESS, while sometimes distracting during game play, cut scenes are the best to veiw in 3D... i use it about half the time while playing and always when veiwing story elements of the game. an unique gaming library found no where else.



Nekketsu3D said:

I say: I'm impressed of their unconditional support, his great contribution to restore classic portable consoles and now 16-bit impressed with 3D, thanks for all SEGA ... thanks to you, I bought a Japanese 3DS to enjoy what NOA market wasted.



thanos316 said:

i have some good games for my 3ds. ssf4 is really good for it. im about to pick up fire emblem this week and i can't wait for the new zelda game to arrive. but the 3ds is a great system and i always play with the 3d on.. can't wait to play the new arriving titles



RR529 said:

I've really enjoyed my 3DS so far. I've had to rely on the smaller eShop games, rather than retail recently (since I don't have too much money), so I'm thankful for the service.

The retail games I have played, have mostly been superb (particulary Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater 3D, Tales of the Abyss, Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance, Dead or Alive Dimensions, and Ocarina of Time 3D), and it's finally gotten to the point where some retail titles I've wanted have dropped in price to be affordable to me (Resident Evil: Revelations, here I come!).



Urbanhispanic said:

I bought my 3DS in April 2012 and I LOVE it!! I'm constantly playing games on it when I'm not playing some Wii games. The library is now getting strong and there are great games coming soon.

Now, they need to apply the same strategy to the Wii U so Nintendo can sell more consoles and rub it in EA's greedy donkey face! lol



Honelith said:

Just recently got Donkey Kong Country, Luigi's Mansion, Monster Hunter, Fire Emblem, Tales from the Abyss, Devil Survivor Overlocked and Mario Tennis Open. Never had this much fun with portable gaming and I started all the way back with Gameboy Pocket.



SCAR said:

3D, and GCN like graphics were what made me want 3DS the most. I knew there wouldn't be much at first(like basically every console in their first year), but I knew there would be eventually.
3DS is a great system that can stand on its own.



IAmSpike said:

"Gaz: [...] Although I did like Colors 3D! as an app (apart from the misspelling of colour...)"



gamr4life said:

Never had this much fun with video games in a while. 3ds has surpassed my expectations in almost every area.



QuickSilver88 said:

I bought 3DS at launch and must admit it was pretty disappointing. Thank goodness for the Tom Clancy game at launch which is really a vy good little SRPG and I recoomed it if you haven't tried it. Finally after months eShop came and then they gave us ambassador. Those GBA games are all awesome.....Then the flood of good titles came. Last month I finally moved to the XL and it is a HUGE improvement. The promos are what pushed me to upgrade. I was able to find a Mario Kart bundle at Walmart and got the new Luigi DM game and then got the Layton game on promo...So basically 3 great games or the price of one. Then gamestop was running a trade in promo so I got $110 credit for my original 3ds and mariokart cartridge....after I transferred my ambasator titles of course. Now the system is so rich....I own 10 cart games, all those good gba and retro titles, a few dsi goodies and some nice 3ds ditties. I agree they need more VC patricularly DS classics at a reduced price like their own stuff, layton, castlevania. Also more GBA for everyone. These game would be eay to offer as the 3ds is essentially compatible with these titles without emulation or modification. I was suprised they didn't mention Nintendo Video which I like and find fun. My only request is please Nintendo bring us a new side scrolling Metroid game this generation as it has been wayyyyyy to long. Aso I think more should be explpred in 3DS/WiiU cross play and promos like Sony is doing. MHU was a good start but needed special pricing or even a free download code for 3DS when you buy WiiU retail. Something with Fire Emblem where you could transfer people from 3DS to U and pokemon as well. A new advance wars for both systems with cross play/save. The things would help sell WiiU as 3DS already has 30mil and fast growing audience and it would encourage those gamers to buy a U!



Williaint said:

Link to the Past: 2, Pokemon X/Y, and tentative "Advance" Wars would/will sell 3DS systems.



Funbunz said:

So many of you guys love Monster Hunter. Is the 3ds version better than on the Wii? I had it, and tried really hard to enjoy it. But I found it hard to control in the fights, and all the areas seemed small which led to watching a load screen every 5 seconds. Every time I played it, I thought about how I'd be having way more fun playing Skyrim. Even still, I'm tempted to try again...



TheAdza said:

This was a brilliant read. Thanks NL for showing there is still some enthusiasm for positive Nintendo news. And Like many of you, my 3DS is my go to system of choice. I play it every day.



XFsWorld said:

Just downloaded Lego City: Chase Begins and Donkey Kong 3D today, having fun with them both.



CaPPa said:

The Wii U version of MH3U is better than the 3DS version due to a bigger screen, better controls and online.

There are so many 3DS games that I need to get this year - DKCR 3D, Paper Mario, Lego City Undercover, Soul Hackers, Shin Megami Tensei IV, Project X Zone, Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate and The Legend of Zelda LTP2 (I don't expect to see Bravely Default, Monster Hunter 4 or Smash Bros until 2014 at least). It's an awesome system, the only things it's missing for me are unified accounts (as I have 3DS, 3DS XL and Wii U) and MiiVerse.



SuperSah said:

I'm addicted to MH3U and DKCR3D right now.

Can't.. stahp.. ;_;

I'm constantly using 3D. It makes objects seem more "solid" and immerses you more. Sure beats 1080p for me.



SuperSah said:

@Funbunz 3DS version is 10x better. Better graphic effects like self shadowing, better AA, 3x the content, literally.

The game does have loads between sections, but Monster Hunter always has and so far i'm around 150hours clocked and still hardly into the more challenging quests. Pick it up! It controls better with a CPP, mind you.



dknintendo said:

just think they have been able to bring alot of games to the 3ds.
they must have equal amount or more coming for the wii u
this year and next they are releasing games such as luigi mansion 2, fire emblem awakening, pokemon x and y, pokemon mystery dungeon, donkey kong, monster hunter, castlevania, mario tennis, mario and luigi, animal crossing, zelda, mario party, lego city, shin megami tensei lV, soul hackers, yoshi, sonic lost world, smash bros, project x zone, monster hunter 4, pacman.
so if any of these games here along with other games such as mario kart, 3d land, new super mario bros 2, kid icarus and sticker star dont make people buy and play the 3ds I dont know what they like playing



Nomad said:

I can't believe some people don't like or use the 3D on this system. I play my
games with the 3D slider turned all the way up. The games just look way better and more alive with the 3D on. After playing with the 3D on, if I turn it off, it just doesn't look as amazing. 3D is definitely not a gimmick.
Anyway, yup, the 3DS is the best system out there at the moment, its amassing an exceptional library of games so far with more great games on the way. 3DS is on a roll.



SphericalCrusher said:

@JayArr Since then, there's been a TON of stuff released that most people consider must-own. If you've overlooked those, you should probably just sell the thing. =)



BulbasaurusRex said:

The 3DS already has a much better library than the DS. 90% of the quality games on DS consists of RPGs, puzzle games, casual games, games with excessive touchscreen controls, and/or games ported from consoles. I can only play so many RPGs.



DaveC said:

@Yoshi3DS "am i the only one that prefers getting a game with its case rather than from the eshop?"

No I always buy physical copies too. I want to actually own the games. Because of Nintendo's DRM, downloaded games can be lost in the future when they are no longer supported and I need to replace my 3DS (presumably from an ebay one etc). Also if my unit breaks I would lose all digital copies on that unit as there is no way to transfer from a broken unit. I can see myself going back to the 3DS in the distant future to replay some favorites. Sure the GFX won't be as good as the newest but it may be the only system with 3D.

I am one of the few that plays with the 3D on full at all times. Games just look so bland to me in 2D now. If I play the vita (which is not often, haven't touched it in months) that is the first thing I miss. Yeah it is like wow the colors and resolution are so nice, but it is so ....flat.

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