My original DS is ready for another round


Thirteen months ago, I posted an article praising my old fat blue DS and its incredible durability; I never felt a need to buy another portable until 3DS arrived. I was certain, at the time, that the then-new Professor Layton and the Unwound Future would be the last game I played on Ol’ Blue before I put the venerable, aging handheld out to pasture.

Over a year later, Ol’ Fat Blue still works like I bought it yesterday, my 3DS is still waiting for a great game that’s not a remake, and Professor Layton and the Last Specter is about to grace our lives with another round of classy cleverness. I intend to play Layton 4 on Ol’ Blue. Partly out of sentiment, partly because the battery lasts longer than the 3DS’s…even after seven years!

So, here’s a toast to the best, most hard-working game machine I ever bought: the original DS. Don’t get me wrong, I love my 3DS and can’t wait for the upcoming big titles, but…

Will my original, first-model 3DS still be functioning perfectly seven years from now? I hear Ol’ Blue laughing…


  1. Agreed! i think i may do the same 🙂

  2. I wouldn’t be able to do that solely on the basis that the screen light is very washed out and has a blue hue that ruins the color palette contrast unlike the modern LCDs Nintendo’s been using. It’s a nice gesture of nostalgia though.

  3. It’s amazing that it still works good, is it in good condition? The hinge broke with the one I had and many others had the same problem. After that I had to get a new one. I hated that hinge problem!!

    The 3DS seems more durable and the hinge is hopefully a lot stronger. It’s also pretty heavy. It seems like it can last for very long, but the battery will probably get worse. I wish the battery was better, that’s like the only thing that seriously bothers me about it, not only that, but it takes a long time to fully charge which is a huge bummer

  4. @ Job:

    It’s in amazingly awesome condition. The hinges are perfect, the buttons are perfect, and the little scuffs on the touch screen are invisible when it’s powered up. It is, bar none, my favorite game machine of all time.

  5. I’ve gone from launch DS to launch DS Lite to DSi so no complaints.

  6. @Richard that is amazing. Most people hate the old DS especially compared to the Lite but I too liked the old one more other than the hinge problem.

  7. I got my lite used and I still only had the shoulder button issue with my R but once I learned I could blow in it NES style it works like a charm. The screens on it look a little weird now from lookin at the 3ds, but I honestly liked when both screens were the same size.

  8. The old phat DS is built and looks like a tank, so no wonder it has an excellent durability.

  9. I love me some tank-like products. It’s one of my complaints about cellphones these days… they’re hardly as durable as the older ones. I used to be able to drop my phone several times a day or get myself smashed against a hard object with my cellphone inbetween me and the smashing point, and the phone would STILL WORK (if you’re wondering why those things would happen: I was younger, and much more resilient – that’s why :P).

    However, I never got the original DS. I had only gotten into the DS with the DS Lite. Nothing against the DS phat, I just wasn’t much into video games at the time (while everyone lost their interest in heavy-gaming nowadays with iPhone games, I had lost mine years ago with all the Dynasty Warriors/God of War clones, rise of the FPS and NIS America fanaticism – sorry, I’m an ATLUS boy, NIS America is far too “otaku”-y for me). So I got into the DS fairly late.

    though, my 3DS’ battery lasts just as long as my DS Lite. I turn the screen brightness down and turn on the power saving function: Bam, works wonders.
    I also turn off the wireless function when I know I’m not going to be using it. It isn’t too hard to remember to hit the switch.
    …and of course, it lasts forever when it’s in cradle/attached to its charger.

    So… I’m one of those that are quite curious at all the “3DS BATTERY TOO LOW TOO LOW” rantings that others do. Not saying you ranted, just mentioning that I am quite perplexed by it. It’s as if they NEED the brightness to BLINDING MAX and NEED WIRELESS ALL THE TIME when they’re not going to use it anytime soon… it’s not like they won’t get a spotpass when they put it up to charge.

  10. Oh and fyi: as obvious as it is, most people don’t know that the 3DS actually uses less battery when playing a DS game than when playing a 3DS game. At least, that’s what I’ve experienced (playing Rune Factory throughout the night without a worry of battery warnings).
    (also most people don’t realize that they can turn off the 3DS screen-stretch that messes up their DS game resolution jazz)

  11. I have a red DS phat that still works like a charm. It’s survived two kids beating on it, throwing it, sticking unintended items in the game slots, and a dog’s drool. My three year old now uses it to dink around with little games. I still have nine original stylus’s (bought em on clearance) so that should last for a bit.

  12. Trolololololololol

    But yeah, I never play DS games on my 3DS. Not because of the battery life (frankly, I don’t know anyone who plays while moving or without an outlet in several yards for more than 6 hours. Ridiculous.), but because of the resolution. DS games just plain look best on my DSi XL!

    Though, I’ve been finding myself playing more PSP games than DS anyway, with Layton being the first new one since Solatorobo, and maybe Pokémon Black at launch before that. This is another topic alltogether, but I really am getting a bit tired of Pokémon, though I never thought that I’d say it. “Gotta Catch ‘Em All” is a great motivation to play…until after nearly 15 years you’ve never done it once because you get bored. I love turn-based RPGs, but it seriously needs a story. B/W was a start, but it’s 2011, not 1998. Our handhelds can handle big stories.

    Regardless, it looks like I’ll be waiting a bit for Layton, though. Amazon says it’ll ship in a few days, and then two-day free shipping for me (though it launched today…D:), and then my girlfriend will snatch it from my hands and plow through it immediately. Layton is like bloody crack to her. (See: 6-inch tall Layton plush sitting ontop of a plush Bidoof in our bedroom!)

  13. I bought and still have the original DS (the silver one!) on launch day… Since then, I’ve got through two DS Lites and am currently playing on a DSi XL. While the first DS Lite is already broken and the second one seems to be going the same way, my original DS phat is up and running and being played by my 4-year-old daughter without a problem!

    Yep, the first version of the DS was definitely built to last a lifetime…