In an announcement that nobody saw coming, Nintendo announced the newest member of their handheld family: the 2DS. This system ditches the clamshell design of the previous DS and opts for this new, strange shape, but it looks to be a decent size that will be comfortable to hold. So, other than the shape, what makes this any different than the 3DS we’re used to?
Most notably, the 2DS does not play games in 3D, as the name implies. It will play all 3DS games, and is backwards compatible with over 2,000 original DS games. This absence of 3D is not necessarily a bad thing. First of all, it will theoretically give the 2DS a longer battery life, as the 3D option of the 3DS required more power. Secondly, I won’t be missing the 3D feature because it hurts my eyes to play games in 3D for more than a couple minutes anyway. Besides, most who were seriously interested in the 3D feature bought the original 3DS at launch, or more realistically, after the drop to $169. Now, I’ll have a good reason to buy a new handheld console, as I can play all the new 3DS games, but for $40 cheaper, forgoing the 3D feature I would never use anyway; I’ve been waiting for this.
As hinted above, this system is meant as more of a budget console; it will retail for $129 when it launches on October 12th. Personally, I think this is a great idea. It will give parents a cheaper gift option come Christmastime. Think about it; for the same price as a 3DS, budgeting parents could buy a 2DS plus a game. Considering that the 2DS does everything else the 3DS does, aside from 3D features, it’s a good option for parents of young gamers, as their developing eyes should not be subject to 3D games.
To sum the rest of the features up, the 2DS will be able to play games wirelessly with other 3DS and 3DS XL systems, has full access to the Nintendo eShop, features all buttons, cameras, and slots of the 3DS, (aside from the 3D slider) and will launch in red and blue, according to Nintendo.com.
Aside from the lack of 3D, the only caveat is the new shape. The nice thing about the original DS and 3DS was that I could slide it into my pocket like a phone. Unless I wear cargo pants, I won’t be fitting this 2DS in a pocket anytime soon. Also, without the clamshell design, the screen of the 2DS will be just as vulnerable to scratches and cracks as a smartphone.
In the end, I do think the new design will be quite comfortable. The cheaper will most likely entice me to purchase a 2DS sometime next year, and I think this was a smart move for the struggling company (although the $50 price drop for the Wii U that was also announced today was not so smart, but that’s another story).
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