So many possibilities…

I’ll try to keep this post from turning into a nauseating flood of gushing praise; after all, nothing’s perfect and the 3DS has some problems we’re all aware of—some temporary, some probably permanent.

In the past week, however, I’ve experienced more wonderment and surprise from this little handheld than I’ve ever gotten from my first days with any other gaming device.  In addition, The Mii Beatles paid a visit and my dog thinks I’ve lost my mind.

It’s not like being enthralled by a cohesive fantasy world such as Mario 64 or a new Zelda. And it’s not the purely tech-based thrill the iPhone brought to the table. It’s more like entering a Nintendo science playground where creativity runs wild and new technology exists for one purpose: Fun. The 3DS has personality, charm and humor—lots of humor. Navigating its home screen is like opening a box of Wonka and Honeydukes candies. With a few taps, magic portals open in your coffee table, music visualizers get zapped by starships and helpful tips are delivered by a talking parakeet.

Now we see how a handheld home environment looks and plays when designed by Nintendo—Awesome. I wish Nintendo could work their magic everywhere; imagine a Nintendo-designed PC. I want Shigeru Miyamoto to design my next car’s dashboard.

At this point, I think it’s safe to say the built-ins make the 3DS worth its price. You don’t need to buy a game to have a great time. I went overboard at launch and bought all 3 first-party titles plus Street Fighter. As good as those four cartridge games are, 90% of my playing time has focused on the amazing AR games (Archery 2…Holy cow!!!), Face Raiders, Mii Maker, 3DS Sound, and—most of all—the fun offered by the 3D camera.

Around the internet, people are already using 3DS as a new toolbox for creativity and posting the results…and it’s just getting started.

I don’t know if 3DS can beat the original DS line’s lifetime sales figures. But I do believe it’s already earning its place as the friendliest, funniest, most entertaining gaming device to hit the market.

Okay, gush over. The battery still sucks.


  1. Great article. Can’t stop using the camera. AR games and Mii channel together equals awesome. No issues with battery life here. I put it in the cradle almost evry night and I’m fine…

  2. I do have one concern about the built in software. I have yet to really play street puzzle and quest. The reason being is that I rarely bring my DS or 3DS outside. I do on occasion but it’s rare. Without doing so I’m not able to get the steps In for the coins, or mii’s from streetpass. I personally think there are many gamers out there like me. While I like the idea of streetpass I just don’t see myself using it often enough to play the 2 street games.

    I think what nintendo should have done was have 2 versions of firmware. The Japanese one currently the way it is now. The American one with the option to use spotpass and have friends send u mii’s online to use in the game.

  3. Yeah, awesome article. Sums up my feelings pretty well. I’ve been playing with the damn thing all week long. I remember when I got the DS Phat (about a week after launch)- I was still psyched but overall my reaction to the built-in menus was “What, that’s it?”. Nintendo certainly did it right this time around. I’ve had more fun with this console out of the box this past week than with pretty much any other console I’ve owned. As far as the problems go- well, I’ve adjusted to the new stylus placement and i’ve gotten pretty good at keeping within the “sweet spot”, even the (albeit short) battery life is working out to be not so bothersome. In fact the only real gripe I have is that DAMN, this thing is a DUST MAGNET!

    On a side note, I’ve noticed that now every screen I look at appears to be in 3-D. WTF? Text pops up off of my iPhone and laptop screens. Windows seem to hover above the desktop. TV’s seem to possess a slight level of depth. Is anyone else experiencing this? I knew that the 3DS would be pretty awesome, but I had no idea that it would magically transform every other screen I own into a 3D screen as well. Well, I suppose I got my money’s worth. 😉

  4. Oh yeah, forgot to mention- the only other real problem I have with the 3DS is how it displays DS games. I haven’t noticed the “faded colors” problem that others have reported, in fact, on my 3DS the colors look way more saturated (to the point of being a bit too colorful, if that makes any sense). Honestly it looks like someone took a DS game into Photoshop, upped the contrast too much, saturation too much, and added just too much of a Gaussian Blur filter. One by One pixel mode looks crisp, but man is it tiny. I hope Nintendo realizes this and adds a third option via a system update that lets you play the DS games fullscreen but without the added filters. I don’t care if it looks more pixelated- i’d prefer that to blurriness.

  5. my only gripe is that the wireless on/off switch is on the outside. I don’t know how many times I have checked to see if i had gotten any new spotpass stuff only to be disappointed because the dang wireless switch somehow got turned off. I sure hope they move it inside when they redesign it.

  6. Where did u get the mii beatles from?? i want!!!

  7. @cass

    I made the Mii Beatles, based on the designs from the 60’s cartoon. I’ll try to post their QR codes here or in another post over the weekend. Glad you like ’em!