I said I wouldn’t do it. I said to myself that the one I had was good enough.
Yet here I am, February 12th at 11:29 pm and waiting in line – actually, first in line – for the New Nintendo 3DS.
I have a bit of a unique experience with the 3DS console in that my stupid face was, for a very brief moment in time, representing the sheer fun and excitement to be had with the 3D effect on the original 3DS.
Stuck in a white box with people behind mirrors instructing me to, “Pick up the 3DS and move the slider upwards”.
Thus, “Phwoar!” was born.
Almost four years later and here are Nintendo launching their fourth iteration of 3DS hardware (and fifth if you include the ‘New 3DS XL’) and, yes, here I am leading this line of loyally nocturnal Nintendo fans, ready and willing to part ways with yet another wad of cash for Nintendo’s latest handheld videogames console.
Fast forward a couple of days, and since picking up and leaving Milton Keynes’ friendly GAME store staff 12:01am I have devoted almost 35 hours worth of time, in a week, to the newer, slicker model of 3DS.
Readjusting to where Nintendo have once again moved their widgets, buttons and sliders whilst somewhat dreading this supposedly god awful data transfer process.
Upon unscrewing the rather flaky feeling screws on the back of the console, I found myself in a rather unsettling position. The back panel, which is designed to be removed and replaced if you so desire, is bent almost so far back that I’m fear of it snapping into two pieces.
I’m not ready to spend more money on another (admittedly beautiful looking) faceplate just yet! Luckily, and with a bit more peripheral persuasion, the back panel popped off without shattering and there I saw the Micro SDHC card, a blank slate awaiting inheritance of all the data from her ancestors before her.
I actually didn’t find the drag and drop nature of copying the data from 3DS to PC then back to 3DS via Micro SD that difficult, so from my point of view those who are worried about it needn’t be.
If you’re the kind of person who is confident to take a screwdriver (make sure it’s the right type and size though) to your hardware, you will almost certainly understand how to move folders from one card to another.
However, if you’re not comfortable with that method – and to be honest I wouldn’t blame you – then please use the simpler but slower method found within the 3DS menus).
So, what’s so special about this modestly titled ‘New’ 3DS, then?
The ‘Super Stable 3D’ is something I never turn off now, which is the polar opposite to what I did before on the 3DS XL, so that’s a fairly big plus.
The C-Stick, a pressure-sensitive nubbin placed rather delicately next to the Super Famicom style coloured buttons is handy for controlling the camera in such delights as The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D and Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate, but as of right now the ‘New 3DS’ really doesn’t do much so show off its true potential with its superior processor power and extra shoulder buttons.
Sure, menus load quicker but is that all we have to show for it? That and the ability to now do Smash attacks against our rival Amiibo in Super Smash Bros. for 3DS? Not really worth the asking price says I, assuming you already have a 3DS at hand.
So, where do I stand on this latest miniature box of wonders?
Well, it’s demonstrably the loveliest and most capable Nintendo handheld to date, as was the regular old 3DS XL before it.
I just wish there was one title available at launch to show us why this newer model exists. Perhaps Xenoblade Chronicles 3D will be that title when it arrives in a little under a month, at the time of writing.
Nostalgic, customisable cosmetics are nice but I fear we could have another DSi on our hands; an improved model with the promise of better software exclusive for it but what was there, really? Not a lot.
The DSi existed as a stopgap and time will tell if this New 3DS is another case of Nintendo biding their time before their next big thing, and so the circle will continue.