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Customer Review

206 of 237 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The future of 3D handheld gaming is here., 25 Mar. 2011
This review is from: Nintendo 3DS Handheld Console - Cosmos Black (Console)
Nothing prepared me for when I first switched on my 3DS, and was greeted by the 3D interface of the system menu. The 3D effect is slightly different to the effect I had seen on 3D t.v's in electrical shops. The 3D tends to be 'into' the screen, with some effects coming out at you (but not like I saw on the t.v's). Basically, you have to experience it for yourself to get the effect of the 3D as it's intended to be.

The bundled software includes, MiiMaker, Mii Plaza, Augmented Reality (AR) games and Face Raiders. MiiMaker lets you design your own avatar (to be used in games), exactly like the Wii version, the difference with the 3DS version is that it allows you to automatically generate a Mii from a photograph taken from the 3DS's inward facing camera. You can then tweak your Mii to get it just the way you want it. You can also transfer Mii's from a Wii through a wireless connection. There is an option to turn your Mii into a sort of barcode, where you can put the barcode image on the internet, and other 3DS owners can scan it in using the outward facing cameras. Mii Plaza allows you to view Mii's that you have encountered on your travels through StreetPass (local wireless communication between 3DS owners passing by). You can use these Mii's to play an RPG mini game, and the more Mii's you encounter the better. Augmented reality involves placing a card with an image that the 3DS scans with the cameras and projects a computer generated image (character) onto a real world scene (like a table top), you can then play games that project objects onto your living room table. Face raiders allows you to take a picture of a face and then project the face onto the room your in, you then have to fire tennis balls at the faces before they cause you damage. If you destroy all the enemy faces without your health gauge going to zero, you can then fight the boss. You need to collect as many faces as you can to unlock later levels, and you can also let friends have a go with the share mode which wont affect your score on your own game file. This is probably my favourite bundled software on the 3DS.

The system has much improved online abilities, with the already mentioned StreetPass, and also SpotPass. With SpotPass you can leave your 3DS in low-power mode (sleep-mode), and it will silently download software, game demos and game data for you. I found setting up the online very easy, and just required my Wi-Fi routers security key to get it connected to the broadband, very impressed with the setup.

The usual X,Y,B,A and L and R shoulder buttons and D-Pad from the DS are back, but there is now a 'circle pad', which gives you 360 degree analogue input, which is perfect for a lot of games that require it. I use it instead of the d-pad for pulling of combo and ultra combo moves in Super Street Fighter 4, it's so much comfier and less clumsy than the d-pad. Another great innovation from Nintendo. There is also the telescopic stylus from the DS, and works exactly like the DS touchscreen does.

There is full surround sound support, stereo and mono sound options. The sound on Super Street Fighter 4 was superb, and the punches and kick sounds gave the moves some weight and feel to them.

The system comes with a cradle, which plugs into the Ac charger and allows your 3DS to charge in sleep mode. You can use just the Ac charger on its own if you wish. I have a silicone skin for my 3DS, and found that it wouldn't then fit into the cradle with it on, so I don't bother using the cradle for this reason. The battery life isn't great, about 3 hours on moderate brightness, sound volume and 3D settings. I found that a full recharge took a couple of hours, so it wasn't too bad. The battery life is acceptable if you only get to play the 3DS for a few hours on a journey, where you can then recharge it at your destination.

There will be a system update in May that will allow you to take 3D videos, browse the web and allow you to buy downloadable software and games through a WiiWare style service and virtual console, where you can buy Gameboy and Gameboy Colour games (initially).

Would I recommend spending nearly £200 on this system, I would say if you want affordable mass market 3D entertainment then YES, get it I have found it to be worth the asking price and has given me an outlet to get into 3D entertainment at a reasonable price (think of the price of 3D t.v's when they came out last year).

There is a strong line-up of software for the 3DS in the next 3 - 6 months, so you shouldn't be stuck for something to play on the 3DS, and Nintendo have promised to keep the releases coming at a constant rate so there will be a good selection of games.

In conclusion then, I would sum up the 3DS as the future of videogames, and would say that this marks a milestone in how we consume mass market entertainment for a portable device for the forseeable future. If you've already got it, then I congratulate you. If you're thinking about it, then think no more you should get it without delay!

GRAPHICS: 94% The 3DS screen has a higher resoulation than the DS. The 3D effect will put a smile on your face.

SOUND: 90% Catchy system menu and operating system music and sounds. The Street Fighter 4 sound was really good and helps the game.

CONTROLS: 92% The added circle pad gives greater control and flexibility in certain games. The d-pad is responsive as well as the face buttons (X,Y,B,A).

OVERALL: 95% A brilliant handheld, that improves on the DS in leaps and bounds. This is where portable 3D entertainment is at right now. I am VERY happy with the 3DS overall, and look forward to the next 7 years of using it.
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Showing 1-10 of 31 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 25 Mar 2011 14:19:56 GMT
DKL says:
Great review. I'm still sitting on the proverbial fence for a couple of months though.

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Mar 2011 15:16:05 GMT
Thanks, I hope you have as much fun as I'm having!

I got Lego SW 3 today, and the 3d is amazing, ships flying into you're face! The 3d gives a greater focus on objects in the game, and improves the ability to plan your attacks.

I can't wait to see how this works in games like Super Mario 3d.

Posted on 25 Mar 2011 18:52:33 GMT
Mr Williams says:
Your review is the best and most informative/helpful review I have ever read.

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Mar 2011 19:05:52 GMT
Thanks, I try my best!

Posted on 25 Mar 2011 19:29:13 GMT
DKL says:
I'm still not sure if I want to splash out £200 on this machine, and then another £100-150 for the games. I probably will in a month or two, once the online store is patched in.

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Mar 2011 19:56:49 BDT
Dragonlord says:
Hi BiggestMarioFan, does the 3DS give you headaches and make your eyes ache too after one/two hours play in 3d mode?
I have also read that the battery life is only around 6-8 hours is this true?

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Mar 2011 21:33:05 BDT
I never play it for more than 2 hours at a time, so I haven't experienced any 'real pain', but I cannot play for more than 2 hours with the 3D on at between 1/2 and 2/3 Max. I sometimes have to readjust the 3D, as it sometimes isn't focused right, but this depends on what is being displayed on the screen (different games need different 3D settings). I generally find that the 3D effect doesn't work well if I have it on maximum 3D setting. The manual says that you should take a 10 minute break for every 30 minutes of gametime. I have found that when looking at my computer monitor after playing the 3DS for 2 hours, that I have to readjust my eyes a little, but they aren't sore.

The battery only lasts a few hours on moderate settings (brightness, volume and 3D effect). A full recharge takes a couple of hours. I generally play the 3DS plugged into the mains all the time, because of this.

Hope this answers your questions.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Apr 2011 19:32:44 BDT
Last edited by the author on 2 Apr 2011 19:33:07 BDT
Dragonlord says:
Hi yeah thanks BiggestMarioFan, I might get a 3DS one day when it gets cheaper or for Christmas and by then the new Mario Kart game will be out. For now I have lots of great DS and Wii games to enjoy and who knows next year or the year after the Wii 2 might be out which will be of more interest to me. The Wii is the best console for family multiplayer games of all time and it's succeeder will hopefully follow in the same footsteps. I don't understand why Nintendo have not done a F-Zero game for the Wii which would be super cool online!

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Apr 2011 21:18:44 BDT
Yeah, I'd probably buy an F-zero if it were to come out on the wii, but it's unlikely. I will probably get a Wii 2 when it comes out, if my current budget stays intact!

Posted on 10 Apr 2011 14:38:06 BDT
Petra says:
Great review, thanks for sharing. I am thinking about getting a 3DS next year, when I have the money spare. I have got one question: is the home screen any good? From pictures I can see it is different, but is it good and in 3D?
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