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The Ten: Updated Wednesdays-Fridays-Sundays

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

It's in the palm of your hand! Or, let's talk about the Nintendo 3DS...

Objects on screen are 2D representations of 3D awesomeness.

Okay, so I own a 3DS. I think it's a pretty neat little contraption. However, I've heard many-a-complaint that the 3DS is "too similar" to the DSi, and that there's no reason to own one. Well, I think that's a silly way to look at it, and I've taken it upon myself to not only compile a list of TWO reasons to invest in a 3DS in the future. Why? Well, I'm a crazy Nintendo fanboy.

Yeah. I said it. But I think I can logically and reasonably state why the 3DS is awesome to those who enjoy casual gaming, Nintendo gaming, and being in touch with a gaming community/friends of their who like gaming. So! Let's knock this thing out, shall we? I'll start with a very important topic.

Online Networking/Gaming

The REAL reason Nintendo decided to come out with this piece of hardware, though it may look similar to the DSi, or a DS Lite, is not, in fact, because they wanted to share glasses-less 3D with the world- that was the hook, the bait that drew us all in. The 3D portion is pretty cool, but everyone knows that the 3DS looks and plays just as well with the 3D turned off, too. The fact of the matter is, it boasts much better online performance and will eventually be integrated into the Nintendo Network, which will be the ridiculous online community that Nintendo will eventually have that will be totally awesome, etc etc. Now, some of you don't have to believe that statement, but the Nintendo Network, and the devices that will function in tandem with it (the 3DS and the WiiU), will thrive. They will be successful, and they will be awesome, because they'll function in a simplistic, yet innovative manner that will allow casual gamers, Nintendo fans, and others to connect with one another. But it will also allow Nintendo fans access to wonderful tools that assist connectivity with one another and with Nintendo themselves. Take SwapNote, the shiny, new version of Pictochat, for example- its ridiculously easy to set up and use, and once you add a friend to your address book, you can SwapNote the shit out of them whenever you want. Which is a great communication tool, and if you want to stay in touch with people, it's just a good tool in general. But screw that, we want to hear more about fun gaming things.

Though this is something approaching on the horizon, it won't be long before the Nintendo Network makes its appearance on the 3DS- it technically already has, if you consider Mario Kart 7's leaderboards and matchmaking system to be a preliminary part of it- they were referenced in a recent article as being included in the Nintendo Network. The eShop is also kind of a part of this, but in a different way. The fact that DLC is already going to be offered for some of these portable games is really a great sign for how Nintendo will be conducting their business online- and trust me, whereas DS, Wii, and (sort of) DSi online communications were a pain, eShop -and 3DS online in general- is really smooth and nice. It really works as a "next-gen" portable device, and as something that could be used in tandem with the WiiU. Buying material for your WiiU on your 3DS and vice versa (though the vice versa isn't really necessary) by use of the Nintendo Network makes a 3DS kind of a valuable asset. The unveiling of a new Nintendo console really shouldn't have come as a shock, considering the 3DS NEEDED a home console to interact with, really... and when you think about it, Nintendo's been all about console/handheld communication since the Gamecube, but they now finally have the tech to make it way less painful (no link cables or ridiculous connection times).

So if you're even considering buying a WiiU, it might be a good idea to get a 3DS, too. I'm not saying that's the ONLY reason you should get one, though... HELL naw.

The Actual Games

Yes, the launch of the 3DS was... less-than-stellar. Instead of powering the console up with first party launch titles, Nintendo sat back and let the third party groups do their thing. Which kinda failed. The flagship title of the 3DS, Kid Icarus: Uprising, releases this week- so the 3DS has kind of been sitting on its thumbs up until now. However! That doesn't mean it doesn't have good games!

Street Fighter IV 3D
Dead or Alive: Dimensions
Resident Evil: Revelations
Ocarina of Time and Star Fox 64 3D
Mario Kart 7
Need for Speed: the Run
Pokemon Rumble Blast
Rayman 3D and Origins
Spyro's Skylanders
Tales of the Abyss
Hell, even though I hate to admit it, Super Mario 3D Land deserves a look.

Huh. Looks like, so far, the 3DS has something for pretty much everyone. BUT WAIT. The games that are already out, truth be told, pale in comparison with the games that are eventually going to see release. Some reasons to be excited for a 3DS?

Fire Emblem: Awakening- It's co-op. It's Fire Emblem. It's got DLC.
Luigi's Mansion 2- More mansions, more fun. Probably (definitely) longer than the original.
Paper Mario- It's Paper Mario like you know and love him. Need I say more? Fine. Read the article below this one.
Animal Crossing- Will probably melt your face.
Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance- Uh... it's a KH game that's a SEQUEL. Whooo.
Etrian Odyssey IV- Another installment in the RPG franchise.
Monster Hunter Tri G- It's Monster Hunter Tri with new monsters and local co-op. Awesome? Yes.
Professor Layton and the Mask of Miracle- Um. It's Professor Layton.
Mario Tennis Open- Innovative touchscreen/circle pad controls! Yeah!

And those are games that we've seen bits an pieces of... Some other games to get excited about are, perhaps...

Super Mario 3DS- A 2D side-scroller. Weird.
Monster Hunter 4- Epic monster wrassling on a new level.
Professor Layton vs. Ace Attorney- Layton meets Phoenix Wright. NUFF. SAID.
Contra 3DS- Remember Contra 4? Now get excited.
Bravely Default: Flying Fairy- Weird name aside, this is Square Enix's new RPG title.
Conduit 3DS- Being worked on, may or may not have Abraham Lincoln in it.
Sega/Capcom/Namco Crossover Title- All just teasers at this point, but it will probably be a fighter. Also, probably epic.

See, the thing about any game platform is that it will have good games, and it will have bad games. The DS had a ridiculous amount of silly touchscreen extravaganzas, but it also had a lot of really good games. Over a six year period, of course. The 3DS started slow with quality titles but it's rapidly building a library- not only of good handheld experiences, but lengthy, deep console-sized experiences, as well. It's neat.

BUT when you also think of all the bite-sized eShop games that you'll be picking up over the 3DS' life, the console is definitely worth your investment. You could technically ONLY buy eShop games and you'd still probably be getting just as much mileage from the system- the quality of those titles is high enough, in itself.

The Nintendo 3DS, and the WiiU, are Nintendo's next step in gaming networking and quality. These two systems are going to be vey much interconnected, and they both represent the increased connectivity and accessiblity that needs to happen in modern gaming. Sure, they're a little late in comparison to Sony and Microsoft, but the steps they're taking to make sure their systems are not only enjoyable gaming experiences, but also just quality consoles. Which is good, if you like quality.

Or if you're a Nintendo fanboy.

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