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Thread: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

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    My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    Hi,

    This afternoon, I went along to one of the Nintendo 3DS pre-launch events (the manchester one), thought id share what happened

    Turned up, and there were about 20 of us there..once we were scanned in, we were taken downstairs to a room with some of the classic gameboy consoles in boxes, and some video screens. A (rather hot) Nintendo girl read out a little story to us, explaining how we would be amongst the first in the UK to play with a 3DS. She was so nervous but did well, even if it didnt create much atmosphere hehe.

    We were moved on to another room, and then treated to a mock Street Fighter 4 fight - 2 real life actors acting it out rather impressively. It was all a little awkward for the 20 of us having never met, but still rather cool. Then it got better, 2 STARS members (from resident evil) came and shouted at us, waving plastic guns and telling us to get down and start moving..we were then led through a room full of Zombies (more actors) who grabbed at us, moaned etc as we were hurried through. Again very cool Obviously designed to show the idea of "bringing games to life". Finally we were shown a demo video, including Mr Wonathon Woss himself..before finally the real reason we were there - 20 minutes of play on a 3DS.

    The room was quite dark, and we'd already been told many times "no cameras or shots of the DS itself", but to be completely honest I was more interested in the mass of very cute "booth babes" in the room (2 per console lol). This was shaping up to be a good day.

    Anyway, back to the DS. The hardware first..it felt well built - much more solid than my last gameboy (which was a DS-lite), and fit perfectly in my large european hands..I dont think this will give me cramp like the DSlite sometimes did. Its a bit too big for your pocket imo, fatter than I had imagined, but still not too big. The analog stick is in the natural place and was very responsive, it's such a huge leap up from the d-pad and its a really welcome addition. But the real meat of this console is the screen. Not only is it insanely bright (adjustable of course) but it's very clear and both screens showed good colours. The bottom one is touch and largely unchanged from what I can tell, but the top one is the fancy new 3D one.

    How was the 3D effect? In two words, "Mind Blowing". I've read journalist reviews which have all been mixed, but really when you see it for yourself, its truely amazing. I was lucky enough to get given Zelda as my first play (and..wow..I wish it was a launch title), and the 3D effect is used brilliantly. It adds a tremendous amount of depth to the game, and doesn't feel just "tacked on" as it so easily could. Zelda is one of the best in 3D due to the 3rd person perspective and the running around the maps, it's been done brilliantly. You DO have to keep your head fairly still and be at the right angle in order for the effect to work - if you move too much it goes a bit blurred - but you dont have to stay completely still as many previews imply, there is more of a "zone" to stay in for it to work. Perhaps the best way to see the effect is to use the 3D slider to turn it off - the games then look so flat and boring..completely different to when you turn it on.

    So what else did I play other than Zelda, which doesnt need much introduction. I'll quickly run through the ones that stick out.

    Pro Evolution Soccer - This was one of the best 3D titles, made use of the 3D perfectly...one of the only 2 launch titles I would consider buying.
    Lego Star Wars 3 - Again it used it well, but I did find some of the platforming a little difficult on the 3D mode, not really sure why.
    Pilotwings - This game was made for 3D. The only other launch title I would consider
    Kid Icarus - Not as good as I remember, good use of 3D but not really a game for me on this console.
    Steel Diver - really feels like a tech demo. Rubbish imo but good use of 3D
    Street Fighter - Again great 3D, but not my kinda game. Didn't spend long here
    Ridge Racer 3D - Great fun, the 3D is really limited to your car but its nice...not game changing though.
    Rabbits Travel In Time - looked really great, 3D platformer..benefits nicely from the 3D
    Resident Evil: The mercinaries - Terrible Terrible Terrible. Sorry but its pants.
    Super Monkey Ball 3D - meh wasn't too bothered here, didnt play it much.

    Aside from that I had a play on the built in AR games which are fun, but not more than a novelty really. The 3D camera is really fun, but it's such a low resolution that it remains just "fun".

    I also got to look at some demos of two really huge games that I will definitely buy (and would sell me the system): Starfox 3D and Mario Kart 3D. Starfox is just..I would buy the 3Ds for this game alone. I loved Starfox 64 (aka Lylat Wars) and the ability to carry it with me anywhere would be amazing. Really can't wait for this one, and it looked amazing in 3D. Mario Kart is mario kart, what more do I have to say?

    So the 2 big questions. Is 3D just a gimmick, and have I now pre-ordered a 3DS?

    No I dont think its just a gimmick, it really adds something special to the games, and its a big leap forward. The 3D effect is miles better than any you get on your TV or at the cinema, largely due to the fact it's not so dark.

    Have I pre-ordered? Not yet..largely because the launch titles are frankly very very poor. Pro Evo and Pilotwings are the only two I would consider, and even those are not swinging it for me. I will probably pre-order on monday anyway with just those two games, simply for StarFox and Zelda.

    So in short, the console is really amazing (thank you Nintendo for the playtest!), but the UK launch lineup sucks. My opinion? Buy one anyway as StarFox/Zelda will be out by June, and I bet the 3DS will be in short supply until way after that, just like with the Wii.

    If anyone has specific questions about the 3DS let me know, and i'll see if I can answer them.

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  3. #2
    OilSheikh
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    Re: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    Thanks for the review dude. Bet you had a really cool day : D

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    Grizzled old-timer! Deadlight's Avatar
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    Re: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    Wow. I'm very interested in this - I migt wait until I get my hands on one.

    A few questions;

    - Do you know of the UK RRP?
    - The 3D effect - is it just a visual effect, or does it affect the gameplay? (Different titles, obviously)
    - Wifi, right?
    - Do you think Ninty have shyed away from their 'cutey cutey titles / no blood / only zombies' mode and will now cater for the mature amer as well?
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    Re: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    Nintendo explained to me no less than 5 different times that "there is no RRP, retailers will choose what price to sell at". That said however, the average wholesale price is put at about £170, and i've seen prices ranging from £197 (tesco) up to £230 (gamestation). Average seems to be about £220.

    The 3D effect is purely visual (all games can be played in a 2D mode) but it does make a difference to how you play it. Pro evo for example although you are still doing the same thing, it really feels more like your running forwards with the ball, into the distance..it's hard to describe really, but it definitely adds to the game. Lego Star Wars is another good example - the different perspective means that the way you judge distance and a precision jump is totally different.

    Yes, it has Wifi - sadly no 3G I don't think

    Regarding the type of games - Nintendo themselves will never produce lots of gory/bloody/violent games as 1st party titles. They have never done so, and have never needed to (they make enough money without doing so), but in recent years (since the gamecube) they have relaxed the restrictions on 3rd party developers. Just look at resident Evil 5 on the cube for a good example. So i'm sure there will be a fair share of violent titles, but probably not as much as the playstation. It's not really nintendo's market focus.

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    Re: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    Mmm, inteesting. Cheers.
    This hot girl came over to myspace last night, she twittered my yahoo till I
    googled all over her facebook. Ask Jeeves...

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    Re: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    Quote Originally Posted by Spud1 View Post
    Nintendo explained to me no less than 5 different times that "there is no RRP, retailers will choose what price to sell at". That said however, the average wholesale price is put at about £170, and i've seen prices ranging from £197 (tesco) up to £230 (gamestation). Average seems to be about £220.

    The 3D effect is purely visual (all games can be played in a 2D mode) but it does make a difference to how you play it. Pro evo for example although you are still doing the same thing, it really feels more like your running forwards with the ball, into the distance..it's hard to describe really, but it definitely adds to the game. Lego Star Wars is another good example - the different perspective means that the way you judge distance and a precision jump is totally different.

    Yes, it has Wifi - sadly no 3G I don't think

    Regarding the type of games - Nintendo themselves will never produce lots of gory/bloody/violent games as 1st party titles. They have never done so, and have never needed to (they make enough money without doing so), but in recent years (since the gamecube) they have relaxed the restrictions on 3rd party developers. Just look at resident Evil 5 on the cube for a good example. So i'm sure there will be a fair share of violent titles, but probably not as much as the playstation. It's not really nintendo's market focus.
    Should have mentioned that if you have kids who play on one, you just might find them trying to move in order to avoid the laser cut that come at you!

    Never see much 3D in Mario Kart though.
    On a different note, their 3D demo video of Sky Sports did look amazing!
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    Re: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    looking forward to pro evo in 3d, thanks for all the info...not gonna pre-order just yet though..

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    Re: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    I've got to ask, is it worth buying over the dsi XL? im buying one for me and my gf but may hold off if it's worth getting the 3ds instead.
    Quote Originally Posted by TAKTAK View Post
    It was so small that mine wouldn't fit into it

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    Re: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    Thanks for this write up. Did it take a while to get used to the effect and did you have any feeling you might not be able to play for a long session with the 3D effect?

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    Theoretical Element Spud1's Avatar
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    Re: My hands on with a Nintendo 3DS

    Is it worth buying over the XL - I think so yes. Not long to wait and it's a much better console. Twice the price though...

    GheeTsar - I got used to it instantly, no adjustment required really. My eyes didn't get tired of it and it seemed like I could have played for hours, but obviously it's difficult to say as I only had about 30 minutes. This will differ person to person I think, a good indication could be how well you get on with "normal" 3D movies.

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