Nintendo 3DS

Here are our notes on the new Nintendo 3DS:

The Nintendo 3DS boasts 3D graphics (optional) without the need for special glasses, and it’s quite stunning. It’s backwards compatible, which we love, and virtual items bought on your DSi can be imported into the 3DS. There’s a new joystick-like feature which is great, but the D-Pad is placed slightly awkwardly in order to accommodate it.

The 3DS sports much better graphics than the DS. Potential buyers of the Nintendo 3DS should keep in mind that this is NOT just another DS model (as was the DSi and DS Lite). Rather, it’s a next generation DS. Essentially, it’s a DSi with considerably better graphics.

Nintendo is promising an exciting game line-up, although there is not too much to choose from at the time of this writing.

The 3DS comes with cute AR Cards for silly pictures, and more. Kids can take digital photos and then insert Miis and characters into them with truly cute results. Like the DS, there are two cameras and they’re low quality.

The 3DS is compatible with Miis from your Wii system.

There is a 3D slider that adjusts the intensity of the 3D factor, and can be turned off fully if desired. When 3D is active, it takes the eyes some adjusting to really “see” it. It’s a tad grainy and washed out, but overall quite stunning. It’s recommended that kids 7 and younger NOT use the 3D, as their eyesight is still developing, and that’s one of the reasons it’s essential to have the option to turn 3D off. But some users, regardless of age, may find the 3D distracting and disorienting.

The stylus is in a slightly awkward location, and must be extended to full length in order to use it, which makes it less accessible than it is in previous DS models. However, this is something that users simply need to get used to.

Perhaps the most frustrating element of the design of 3DS for Nintendo DS users is the location of the Power button. It’s in the same place as the Start/Select buttons were on the DS and DS Lite. Long-time users tend to press it instinctively and can end up closing the unit, losing their most recent progress! This is another thing to get used to.  As well, the new Start/Select/Home buttons are in a less than intuitive location and require more force to use.

Keep in mind that battery life is shorter.

To buy: Nintendo 3DS – Cosmo Black