Nintendo Announces Release Date for 3DS

Nintendo’s 3DS is coming! Just in time for the holiday season—oh, wait. No. Scratch that. Just in time for right after the holidays, sometime in February. If you’re in Japan. For the rest of us we get to wait until March, during that rich retail period around St. Patrick’s Day.

So clearly I have some issues with the proliferation of 3-D gimmicks running amok in gaming, film, and TV as of late. I won’t dispute that I’m a little, shall we say, opinionated on the subject (not to mention 3D stuff gives me quite the headache). So here, yet again, we see a company putting a whole bunch of eggs in one basket (perhaps Yoshi eggs) in the hopes that 3-D is really going to make a difference.

Why do I think that? Sure, the 3DS was announced at E3, and lots of people are excited. But here’s the thing: I think Nintendo really missed the mark on this one. And it looks like they know it. For instance, according to the New York Times, they have cut their full-year income estimate more than by half—from 200 billion yen down to 90 billion yen. The Times reports: “It mainly cited the strong value of the yen against other currencies, which erodes its overseas earnings.” Still, that’s a huge change in forecast this late in the season, and is likely related to the fact the 3DS really isn’t going to be making any waves until next year. Providing they stay on schedule.

In the realm of hand-held devices—now facing some sincere competition by iPhones, iPods, and Android phones—the old DS, which is six years old (practically a dinosaur in this market), may be losing its hold on the market. While technically the DS has outsold even the iPhone, forecasts aren’t looking so hot. Says the Times:

In the six years since the DS hand-held machine was introduced, Nintendo has sold 132 million units, more than twice the number of Sony PlayStation Portables sold over a comparable period… In comparison, Apple said in July that cumulative sales of iPhones, iPads and iPod Touches had reached 100 million; the earliest of those, the iPhone, was introduced in 2007.

Okay, so we get that the DS needs a makeover. And I’m sure Nintendo is well aware of this. I really want Nintendo to blow this out of the water, really I do. I was raised a Nintendo fangirl. But is 3-D really the way to go? The details show a mix of good and bad. For instance, the 3DS doesn’t require 3-D glasses. It’s got two screens, the top being reserved for 3D images and the bottom being a stylus touch we’re familiar with. However, as the picture demonstrates, it really doesn’t look all that different from previous incarnations at all. For a six-year evolution it’s pretty tame and kind of clunky looking.

And that’s not the mention the pricetag: a hefty $300 with current rates. Coupled with a post-holiday release, well, let’s just hope the payoff isn’t in another castle.

[Image: Nintendo]

Advertisement





12 Responses to Nintendo Announces Release Date for 3DS

  1. Both screens should be the same and they should have incredible resolution. That's only way to succeed now. My first hand held device was a game boy advanced and I only recently bought a DS Lite. 3D wouldn't entice me to buy anything new.

  2. 3D? Seems like a rip off. I went to see three movies in theaters and they were supposed to be 3D. Nothing impressive there, I don't think the DS will be any different. It's a waste. Plus you can't look at it long. I also think the screens should be the same size, that kind of stuff bugs me. I wont be getting one!!

  3. Natania, can you actually say why you don't like 3D? All I've seen you say on multiple articles recently is that you don't like it, and then refuse to say why, only citing your pointedly that you are opinionated; but that's a bit of a cop-out without actually stating said opinions.

  4. Another thing.

    "In the six years since the DS hand-held machine was introduced, Nintendo has sold 132 million units, more than twice the number of Sony PlayStation Portables sold over a comparable period… In comparison, Apple said in July that cumulative sales of iPhones, iPads and iPod Touches had reached 100 million; the earliest of those, the iPhone, was introduced in 2007."

    So..three devices (all generations) sell more than one device (all generations)? No shit. How about comparing iPhone + iPad + iPod Touch (all generations) against Wii + DS (just the generations from 2007 onwards) from the date the iPhone was released. That's a fairer test, and one I'm sure the pro-Apple media aren't so willing to publicise.

    • Well, the answer to the first question is a post in and of itself. But the short of it is that most of the 3D stuff out there is either done after filming or not done well at all. It's also insanely expensive and it's done to get people to see films regardless of their quality. I figure that movies have to stand on their own–if the 3D enhances the product, that's great. But so often that's not the case. Plus, it give me a wicked headache. ;)

      And that stat above from the NYT is pretty fair, considering the DS hasn't seen a renovation in the last six years. They are different gadgets, totally. And the DS still has the upper hand in that case. I'm not pro-Apple. I'm pro-gadget–and I love Nintendo. I'm just worried they haven't been on the ball and are missing out on some opportunities, is all.

    • Well, the answer to the first question is a post in and of itself. But the short of it is that most of the 3D stuff out there is either done after filming or not done well at all. It’s also insanely expensive and it’s done to get people to see films regardless of their quality. I figure that movies have to stand on their own–if the 3D enhances the product, that’s great. But so often that’s not the case. Plus, it give me a wicked headache. ;)

      And that stat above from the NYT is pretty fair, considering the DS hasn’t seen a renovation in the last six years. They are different gadgets, totally. And the DS still has the upper hand in that case. I’m not pro-Apple. I’m pro-gadget–and I love Nintendo. I’m just worried they haven’t been on the ball and are missing out on some opportunities, is all.

      • Sorry Natania, but you don't know anything about 3D.
        The 3d from 3ds is different then what you'll see in the theaters.
        It's something you can't compare.

        In other words, the nintendo 3d is something that you would see a dept in to te screen (which only popout a little of the screen). Besides that it's really sharp which there's NO quality loss. Beside that you'll feel that you are more into the game. It's like nintendogs , it feels that the dog is realy there.
        You'll have to see it by yourself. Again : Dont compare it with curent 3d technology. About the headache, is isen't the same thing as in the theaters.
        You don't feel weird wile watching the display (which is the case with theaters).
        Besides that, you could turn of the 3d effect if there's a reason for?

        And the last, i'm glad that there finally a device which can take 3d photo's.

      • "considering the DS hasn't seen a renovation in the last six years."

        That's my point. It's unfair to compare something which hasn't had a major overhaul to the total of three different products which have all been refreshed multiple times (except for the iPad so far).

        Either compare the DS to one of the Apple hardware models, or compare all of Nintendo's gaming devices to all of Apple's.

      • Also, as for the 3D thing, it's a bit unfair to tar a technology as a whole just because individual films are crap. It's a bit like saying "Paper is a horrible invention. People read horribly written stuff just because it's been put on paper. If paper wasn't invented, we wouldn't have this problem."

        3D itself is a brilliant technology. Lazy filmmakers who make sub-par films are the problem, not 3D. Watch Toy Story 3 in 3D and tell me it doesn't simply put you even deeper into an already-awesome story.

  5. When I was in competitive forensics, I researched 3D quite a bit because I wrote an informative speech on OLED technology. This was nearly two years ago now. 3D tech at home is still a really cool possibility, not to mention a viable market niche, but from what I've read about the DS, they're not hitting the mark with that niche.

    I haven't had a handheld gaming system since my sega gamegear (which still works), and when I first heard about the 3DS, I'll admit I started saving up for one. Now I'm not so sure that's what my money will go towards. We'll see once I've gotten to use one.

  6. 3DS is more than just 3D. You can surf Internet.It has Tag mode. U can watch movies legally. It has gyro and motion sensor. 3 cameras. And U guys call urselves smart.