Review by pikachupwnage

"Nintendo once again delivers a masterpiece"

Back in 2004 Nintendo released the DS. After that they released the DS Lite and then the DSI and DSI XL. Together they sold over 147 mil units (and are still selling). Now Nintendo has released the 3DS successor to the DS family of systems and Nintendo's newest handheld which is capable of 3D without glasses. Is it worth a buy?

Hardware and design 9.5/10

3D and graphics

The 3D without the glasses is the big draw of the 3DS. It really does work and is extremely impressive but you need to see it to believe it. But the most important part of the 3D is that it is adjustable. There is a slider that lets adjust the intensity of the 3D or turn it off entirely. The 3DS has graphics on par with those of the Wii's. In fact the 3DS according to Nintendo, Capcom and multiple other devs the 3DS is capable of graphics better then the Wii.

Design and durability

The 3DS is similar in design to the Dsi but is sleeker slightly lighter and has some new buttons including the circle pad which allows for better control then on any other handheld and the 3D slider. Also added is the home button similar to the wii's home button. However the home start and select buttons are placed under the touch screen which is slightly awkward but not a big deal.

The 3DS is very durable over 700 hours of play and 3 drops on hardwood floor and mine still works perfectly. The L and R buttons are sturdier and less likely to break then the DS lite and dsi's. The hinge feels somewhat loose but actually though you may think otherwise that's actually a good thing. The reason the DS had widespread hinge breaking is because the hinges were too tight but the 3DS has looser hinges making a break less likely.

Hardware flaws

The 3DS is a well-built system though like all systems the 3DS has some hardware flaws though it has no catastrophic flaws.

Sadly some 3DS's have stoppers to short and that can cause the screen to get scratched over time. However screen protectors or even a soft cloth between the screens when you close the 3DS easily prevents this.

Sound

The 3DS has a very good sound system capable of some very good tunes.

Controls

The Circle pad is basically an analog stick and works great and the new gyroscope and accelerometer controls are very good.

Battery life

If you have everything set to the absolute maximum you will get about 3 hours and if everything is at absolute minimum you will get about 6 hours. DS games dsiware and virtual console games last for up to 8 hours.

Use interface 9.5/10

The menu is improved over the DS and DSI. You can choose to have your software sorted in one to 6 rows and everything is easy to find and start up.

Software 9/10

There is a great selection of games now including ghost recon shadow wars, ocarina of time 3D and tetris axis, super Mario 3D land.

Features 9.5/10

Face raiders

A fun wacky game that makes good use of the gyroscope and accelerometer. You take a picture of someone's face and then that face will appear on various bizarre enemies that you must shoot. Trying to get high scores is fun and hilarious and the wacky faces the enemies make at you will surely make you laugh.

Mii maker

Basically the Mii maker from the Wii but with more options and the ability to take a picture of your or someone else's face and have a Mii created based on that picture. You can also scan QR codes to obtain Miis. You can import Miis from your Wii.

AR games

Using AR cards and the 3DS camera you can have fun games happen right on your table! The games include archery, fishing and many others.

Camera

This decent quality camera that is mostly used for games like face raiders. Pictures do look great in 3D despite the only decent quality.

Streetpass Mii plaza.

Contains 2 small games that are meant to show off how streetpass works. One is a simple mini RPG and the other you simply collect puzzle pieces. Will be updated in November with more things to do

3DS sound

Lets you record short sounds and alter them. Also lets you take music from your computer using an SD card and put them on you 3DS to listen to. Somewhat useless but is fun to mess around with.

Game notes

Using the home button you can suspend your game to use this. This Feature is Very useful. An example of a use for this is you are In the middle of a game and you find something you want to remember later. Simply suspend your game with the home button and use game notes to write it down.

Friend list

In the friend list you add friends and then you can check there statues see their favorite game what there playing at the moment and their personal Mii. No friend messaging is disappointing though. Its strangely fun scrolling through the friend list looking at peoples statuses though.

Eshop

You can buy Gameboy and Gameboy color games as well a 3D classics 3dsware and dsiware on the eshop. NES, gamegear, turbografx, and Possibly Game boy advance games will be available later on. Netflix is also available for download.

Swapnote

A successor to pictochat that should be available in december

3D video recording.

After an update in November the 3DS will be able to record 3D video.

Internet browser

Great for browsing website like gamefaqs or using when you have no access to a computer but is no substitute for a normal computer. The better your wifi the better the Internet browser will work.

Nintendo video

Nintendo video is an app downloadable from the eshop. You have 4 videos and when a new one comes in 1 of the old videos goes away. A mixed bag because some videos are great and some are terrible buts it's free.

Value 10/10

170$ for a device that does everything a dsi does plus Better graphics, new control options, lots of free apps and games and 3d without glasses is a great deal. The Included 2GB SD card makes the value even better.

Pros

3D without glasses is impressive
Very Durable
Stylish sleek and glossy design
Circle pad works as well as an analog stick
Gyroscope controls work great
Is fully compatible with DS and DSi software
Has massive potential
3D slider
Lots of fun pre installed software
Comes with a 2GB SD card.
170$ price tag is a great deal and is worth it even if you don't care about 3D
Eshop gives access to Old GB and GBC games as well as DSIware
Hinge Less likely to break then Other DS systems

Cons
Battery life is “meh”
Home start and select buttons are in slightly awkward positioning
The sleek and glossy design makes fingerprints hard to remove but easy to obtain.
Stylus is awkwardly placed in the back
No friend messaging
Short stoppers may lead to screen scratching over time though it is very simple to fix this problem

Verdict 9.5/10 rounded to 10/10

Conclusion

Instant buy For a Nintendo fan. I Highly recommend the 3DS to all. It has the potential to be as great as the DS and has a vast amount of good games on the way.


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 06/28/11, Updated 11/21/11

Game Release: Nintendo 3DS (US, 03/27/11)


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