Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A few thoughts on the 3DS

Now that I've spent a bit of quality time with my 3DS, I thought I'd share a few early impressions of the system and its built-in software:

1. I love how shiny and vibrant system is--Honestly, my "flame red" 3DS looks like a jewel ... or (as I've said before) like a giant cherry Jolly Rancher that plays games. Unfortunately, the system's propensity for being smudged probably is going to drive me nuts.

2. I'm not crazy about the system's design--I've never much cared for the 3DS' ice-cream-sandwich-with-an-overbite construction, especially when compared to the original DS and the oh-so-slick DS Lite, DSi and DSi XL. That said, I don't plan on sitting and staring at my 3DS all that often, so who really cares if its design is kind of wonky?

3. The 3D effect is surprisingly cool--As well as a bit disorienting, at least at first. After spending a few days with it, though, it's much easier to take. Now, I can't seem to get enough of it. I especially like how it's put to use in Super Mario 3D Land.

4. The included software is awesome--I'm especially fond of Find Mii at the moment, although the AR games, Face Raiders, Swapnote and Pokedex 3D are cool, too. I can already tell, though, that I'll be obsessed with Find Mii (and Find Mii II) for a while.

5. The slide pad is better than I expected it to be--I've read lots of complaints about it on line, so I expected to dislike it, too. Thus far, though, it has yet to disappoint me. In fact, I don't even think about it while I'm using it--which signifies to me that it's pretty well made.

So, those are my initial thoughts on Nintendo's latest handheld system. What do all of you think of it so far?


Unknown said...

Agreeing with all the statements, and I honestly haven't heard many complaints about the Circle pad, to be honest. I'm surprised they carried that over to the Wii U, and I'm not sure how that's going to work. But as for the 3DS, it works really well! I love the color of the flame red, but I personally own the Aqua Blue, and it's pretty cool as well. Not as vibrant, but great nonetheless.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Kevin: I've read a number of complaints on certain online forums about them not being as comfortable, etc., as traditional analog sticks. Although that may be the case, I can't say I've had any problems whatsoever with the circle pads. As such, I'm currently more than OK with them being used on the Wii U controller. Hopefully they'll work just as well in that capacity.

As for owning the Aqua Blue 3DS: Hey, I don't think you can go wrong with any of the 3DS colors at this point :)

diaglyph said...

I have a blue 3DS since day one. Initially not much was out but I did have fun with the Quest in Mii Plaza. The update has improved the Quest and puzzles - so much better! And more hats!
Now with so many games out its become so much better. Mario Land and Mario Kart are excellent games! Am currently enjoying Tales of Abyss (I'm in Australia, so am under the european region, I believe Tales of the Abyss is heading to the US in Feb 2012).
Also don't forget to download Swap Note or Letter Box (don't understand why they changed the name for the different regions) and prepare to be addicted!!
Oodles of doodles (of doodles? ;p hehe)

Unknown said...

Very true, Bryan! I love my blue 3DS regardless!

Speaking of the 3DS, if you want to find your friend code, check your friends list (Square with the smiley face at the top of the touch screen on the home menu) and it'll be on te card next to your Mii. :) I have a feeling a lot of us (myself included) would very much enjoy having you on our friends lists. Haha

Bryan Ochalla said...

Hey there, diaglyph! Have you commented here before? If not, welcome :)

Sounds like you've had a lot of time with your 3DS. I'm jealous! Honestly, I love this little system so much right now that I wish I had jumped on the bandwagon sooner. The way things happened, though, I got the system and a game for free, so I'm not wasting too much time thinking about that.

How are you liking Tales of the Abyss, by the way? I've never played a Tales game myself, but I'm interested in them.

As for Swapnote/LetterBox: I downloaded it today! Haven't used it yet, though. Maybe I'll check it out later this week/this weekend :)

Bryan Ochalla said...

Thanks, Kevin! I finally figured out where my friend code was a little while ago. Thanks for trying to help me, though. As for sharing my friend code: I'll be doing that first thing tomorrow. Hopefully a lot of folks here will share theirs, too :)

diaglyph said...

Yeah it's my first time :)
Have been looking at your blog through the feed ;)

I traded in about 22 games so I didn't pay anything for it hehe ;) I also have the Ambassador games.

Anyways, I was playing Samurai Warriors initially which was a fun game! I recommend it. Tales of the Abyss is pretty good. I never played the PS2 version as it never came out in the PAL region, so this is a great opportunity to play the game :) I'm still getting used to combat, even though I'm a fair way through the game hehehe

Here's my friend code: 0903-2758-0800

Bryan Ochalla said...

Ah, you're one of the folks who follows me through the feed. That's great! Thank you for that :)

I'm jealous of you having the Ambassador games, by the way. If I had had the money, I would have picked up a 3DS back then, as I *really* wanted them. Hopefully Nintendo will make them available to the rest of us (for $$$) eventually...

Thanks for the impressions of Tales of the Abyss. I'll have to check it out sometime. I really wish a demo of it existed on the eShop, as this is totally the kind of game would benefit from a demo, in my opinion.

Thanks, too, for your friend code. I'll add you in a second. Look for mine tomorrow morning!

diaglyph said...

cool no worries ;)

I can't wait for the demos to appear in the eShop! I hope they start releasing the demos soon!!
I don't believe the Ambassador GBA games will be released to the general public (but who knows, they may eventually release them).

The new Zelda model of the 3DS looks pretty good, but I came across a cheap decal sticker for the 3DS for $3 Much cheaper than buying the Zelda edition hehe http://i42.tinypic.com/2dkztja.jpg

Unknown said...

Diaglyph, I added you as well. :) For both of you guys, my FC is 2707-1608-7576.

Can't wait to add you tomorrow, Bryan! And I'm definitely following your blog from now on!

diaglyph said...

cool :)
do you want some doodles? :p

Bryan Ochalla said...

diaglyph: I can't wait for demos to appear on the eShop either. Come on, Nintendo! Argh!! :P

As for the Ambassador GBA games: Surprisingly, I'm more interested in the NES games. I know, I'm weird.

I liked the Zelda 3DS well enough, but not enough to get it over the red or pink one :)

Bryan Ochalla said...

Thanks for sharing your FC, Kevin. Am I crazy in thinking I saw it in a previous comment? I just added a bunch to my 3DS, and I swear one of them is "Kevin." Maybe a different Kevin? Off to check... Anyway, I'll post my FC tomorrow, I promise!

Also, thanks for following my blog! Glad you like it well enough to do that :)

Bryan Ochalla said...

What kind of doodles are we talking about, diaglyph? ;)

diaglyph said...

you'll just to have to find out :p

Bryan Ochalla said...

Oh, boy, what have I gotten myself into? ;)

Bryan Ochalla said...

BTW, Kevin: I *did* see your FC earlier -- and already added it to my friends list. Yay!

Unknown said...

Diaglyph, go ahead and send me some doodles. Haha. :) Bryan, I do remember posting it previously. I just added it do more people would have it. :P

Adam said...

I can't wait to get my own 3DS.

I also had some chance to play Starfy, it's actually a very good platformer. Imagine kirby without the powers but underwater.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Are you planning to get a 3DS soon, Adam?

Thanks for letting me know about Starfy, by the way. That sounds nice -- although maybe not as nice as Kirby? I mean, one of the main reasons Kirby games are so great is the powers :)

Darwin said...

So what's on your 3DS games wishlist? :)

Bryan Ochalla said...

Are you talking about announced games or games that I hope will be announced, Darwin?

If you mean the former, I'd say Animal Crossing, Luigi's Mansion 2, Mario Tennis, Paper Mario and Resident Evil are at the top of my list right now. I'm sure I'm forgetting about a few games, though.

How about yourself?

Darwin said...

Oh I meant games that are out now, but I just saw your tweet about a backlog already :0

I definitely want to check out Resident Evil and Paper Mario.

Right now my wishlist is Star Fox and Sonic Generations (I've been on this Sonic kick - 4 Sonic games in the past month!). But I want to finish Mario 3D and Zelda before getting anything else.

I often think that a 0 backlog would feel great, but it also might feel depressing to not have a game sitting around begging to be played.

coolpowers said...

I'm already very jealous of Charlotte (my daughter) and her 3DS. We took it to the mall today and picked up a bunch of StreetPass people - that's really fun, and is a realization of one of my nerdy childhood fantasies - that we'd be able to pass each other in the street and make new nerdy friends.

I've played on it a little bit. I'm really impressed with the amount of built-in stuff, and surprised nobody in the mobile world (I'm an iPhone game dev mainly) has done anything nearly as fun and polished as the included AR stuff.

No problems with the slide pad - it's so much better than the PSP's nubbin. Of course I dunno if they've improved it since the first PSP release, but I really hate using it. When I actually remember I own a PSP, that is.

My biggest complaint is about the region locking, and I bet you'll end up buying a Japanese system at some point Bryan, with all the music games coming out that you just know will never make it intact in the US.

diaglyph said...

I agree with coolpowers, if there is anything negative I would say about the 3DS, its the region locking! Such an archaic system should no longer be implemented in any gaming device - it seems to only promote inflated prices (here in Aus we pay so much more for games, a typical Wii game is $99, 3DS game is around $69 to $79, and other consoles are easily $100+).
It's also why I can't play Devil Survivor 3DS :( Since my 3DS is under the european region and Atlus haven't released a european version.

I was also hoping Atlus would release Persona 4 for the 3DS - the whole TV metaphor would've worked perfectly with the 3D effect etc a pity P4 is coming to PSVita (which I will not be getting, as tempted as I am in playing the re-release of P4, the PSVita will be way more expensive than the 3DS ever was!).

Unknown said...

I dunno. Region locking is so dumb. If you want a version of a game that region exclusive, more money would go to said company. Duh. But that's a consumer thinking.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Darwin: It's a small backlog, but a backlog all the same. I'm already thinking, "Ack! How am I going to play through all of these?!?"

Besides the games I already own and/or are on the way to me, I don't think I want any current 3DS games. Well, with the exception of some eShop titles. Which is good, since I think I need a break from buying games for a while.

BTW, I agree with you about a 0 backlog being depressing. Not that I'm ever going to get near a 0 backlog :P

Bryan Ochalla said...

Coolpowers: I'm jealous that your daughter has already connected with other 3DS owners via StreetPass! I took mine through two airports the other day and didn't get any. Maybe I haven't set something up properly? Guess I should read the manual later today...

As for preferring the side pad to the PSP nub: YES! My god do I hate the PSP nub. I love the PSP otherwise, but that nub is terrible.

Also, I feel I should have mentioned the region locking in this post. I forgot about it until you mentioned it :{ Yes, and absolutely dumb and terrible thing on Nintendo's part. I really hope they don't decide to do this to their handhelds from here on out...

Bryan Ochalla said...

diaglyph: I agree RE: region locking. I'm sure Nintendo will give you a reason for why they do it, but I can't imagine they could say anything that would sway me to support them on it. Ugh.

BTW, I'm sorry you have to pay so much for games in Australia. Yikes!

Bryan Ochalla said...

Kevin: Yeah, I don't understand it either. It especially has to hurt more niche games, I would imagine. Not that Nintendo seems to care about niche games these days...

diaglyph said...

re: game prices in Aus
what are you sorry about? :)
It's not your doing (unless you are the criminal mastermind behind it all hehehe)
The publishers/distributors charge a fairly high price already to the retailers who don't seem to have much choice but to charge the high RRP. Though I wish the retailers would stand up to the publishers/distributors and force them to lower the prices.
I find it ridiculous that I can import a game from the UK that will be 50% or more LESS than local RRP.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Ha! Well, yes, you're right there -- I am not personally responsible for the game prices in Australia. Still, I'm sorry ANYONE has to pay such high prices for games! I'd certainly have many less than I do now if I had to pay twice what I currently pay for them :|

So, do you import most games these days? Also, are EU and AUS 3DSes compatible, or is that a worry for you, too?

diaglyph said...

Australia is under the PAL region = European region. This covers all consoles (ps3/xbox -- meaning I can play UK xbox/ps3 games, 3DS games, Wii games). Australian 3DS uses the european firmware.

Just another example of idiotic pricing in Australia: Steam recently has been forced (by the distributors) to up their prices for certain games in australia too (e.g. Skyrim $69USD in the US, $89USD in Aus), and I remember the point when I said enough is enough, and found an online shop that will deliver to Australia (e.g. got Civ5 when it first came out, on Steam in Aus it was $79AUS, on the UK online shop it was $40AUD AND it was the disk Steam version LOL which activated without a problem in Steam).

Recently a local retailer caused controversy - twice! They broke the street date for Ocarina of Time 3DS by a week (Nintendo had a stupid staggered release date, where Australia was not getting Ocarina until 2 weeks after everyone else in the world), by selling the european version of Ocarina in their shops! Which kinda forced Nintendo of Australia's hand - they allowed the other retailers to start selling Ocarina only to people who had preorders (Nintendo also cancelled a midnight party for Ocarina due to this). This happened because the local retailer (Aus owned) couldn't certain deals directly with Nintendo, yet EB/GAME and other major retailers can do it without a problem (and don't ever bother discounting). Then a similar thing happened with Mario Land - they sold the european version couple days earlier.
Oh I almost forgot, they did it again with Zelda Skyward Sword - because Nintendo did not want to give them the special edition Zelda SS (with controller). So they imported the controller pack from the UK ;)

The publishers/distributors come up with some bullcrap about so many taxes etc - I really really doubt that Aus related taxes would cause a game's price to increase so much! Also, it does not explain DOWNLOAD only games that are almost same price as a boxed version!!

Anyways, enough ranting from me ;)

Where's your 3DS code?? :p

Bryan Ochalla said...

Wow, that's quite shocking, diaglyph. It's good that you can import from the UK -- although it sounds like that's not always easy? Also, I would guess the shipping can be quite expensive?

As for my 3DS code: I finally shared it in a post just after this -- and on the side of my blog, too!

diaglyph said...

The UK site that I've started using offer free postage :) Though I'm sure its incorporated into the price, it's still cheaper! It takes around 2 weeks to arrive by mail.

Yea I noticed your post not longer after I posted my last reply hehe

Bryan Ochalla said...

Oh, well that's good (about the UK site offering free shipping)!