Nintendo's New Handheld is a Revamped, Redesigned 3DS

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Nintendo's New Handheld is a Revamped, Redesigned 3DS

Nintendo's New 3DS features faster speeds, more 3D viewing angles, NFC support, and a new C-button; the first announced title for the handheld is Xenoblade Chronicles.

In a Japanese Nintendo Direct this morning, Nintendo revealed its plans for a new handheld: the New 3DS and New 3DS XL. Nintendo announced the first game for the upgraded handheld, Xenoblade Chronicles, which will not be playable on older 3DS models.

The New 3DS has been revamped for both the smaller and larger sizes. Battery life on the New 3DS is 3.5 to 6 hours, while the battery lasts for 3 to 5 hours on the older model. Battery life for the New 3DS XL (note that in Japan the XL is called the LL) is 3.5 to 7 hours, compared to 3.5 to 6.5 on the original XL. The sizes of the new models are relatively the same as their older models. The New 3DS XL is a little lighter, and the New 3DS is a little heavier and a bit larger.

Nintendo noted the 3D functionality has improved and can be viewed from more angles. Considering how often people do not use the 3D slider due to headaches from the 3DS needing to be in a certain position, the improved 3D could encourage more people to keep the 3D on.

Additional triggers, revamped face buttons, and a C-button (named after the GameCube's yellow C-stick) are a part of the New 3DS. The C-button allows dual analog controls in New 3DS games. An additional circle pad was only available on older 3DS models as the 3DS Circle Pad Pro peripheral.

The New 3DS is faster thanks to a faster CPU. Because of this games made specifically for the New 3DS will not be supported on older models. Xenoblade Chronicles, which came out on the Wii in 2010 in Japan (2011 in Europe and Australia, 2012 in North America), is one such case. It will make use of the New 3DS's upgraded hardware and will not be playable on the older 3DS.

The upgraded handheld will support microUSB and NFC-reading technology. Nintendo has planned a NFC reader device for the upcoming Amiibo toys for the 3DS.

Like a mobile phone, the New 3DS will be customizable through various face plates. So far, face plates featuring Mario, Peach, and Animal Crossing are planned.

The New 3DS is expected to release in Japan first on October 11. Nintendo confirmed to Eurogamer that it plans to launch the New 3DS in Europe in 2015, which is likely around t he same time it will launch in North America. Xenoblade Chronicles on the New 3DS will also release next year.

Much of the buzz for today's Nintendo Direct will be over the New 3DS, but Nintendo also included some news for the current 3DS model. A 3DS firmware update in October will have customized themes, including Animal Crossing: New Leaf, a classic Mario theme, and Legend of Zelda: Link Between Worlds.

Source: Nintendo Direct via Kotaku

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Okay, I don't know how to feel about this news. The 3DS doesn't feel that old to me, I'm somewhat loath to be thinking about investing in the next model already. I suppose it'll depend on how many games are exclusive to this one, is it really called the 'New 3DS' though? Please say that's a working name, even by video game standards that sounds awkward and unoriginal.

Wonder if this will need a price cut to move units in the first year of production. Will it be priced above the $200 mark?

For the love of living christ, Nintendo -- FIRE THE GUY NAMING YOUR SHIT!

JoJo:
Okay, I don't know how to feel about this news. The 3DS doesn't feel that old to me, I'm somewhat loath to be thinking about investing in the next model already. I suppose it'll depend on how many games are exclusive to this one, is it really called the 'New 3DS' though? Please say that's a working name, even by video game standards that sounds awkward and unoriginal.

Japanese name? It the one. American? Eh, I could see them dropping the new. Besides, the update to the hardware was for NFC purposes, it still uses 3DS games and not a new cartridge.

Anyone else getting the feeling that this was created for Smash purposes?

EDIT: Even with the Xenoblade Chronicles exclusive, the DSi had DSi only games as well. I'm still not seeing the big deal here (not you specifically, just in general)

Damn it, Nintendo! My current 3DS was a gift from my girlfriend; how the living hell am I supposed to justify buying this thing?

Well, considering ive been holding off on a 3DS until MH4U, i might just get that instead.

Though, one thing confuses me.

roseofbattle:
The C-button allows dual analog controls in New 3DS games.

Has this been elaborated upon at all? Because if i were to take that at face value then it would imply that the C button switched the funcionality of the analog stick. Something you really dont need (or want) in certain games i could name.

I feel sad when I look back at Nintendo and how few new IPs they have produced in 20 years. Don't get me wrong, I love iterative series and sequels, but there so much innovation they have missed because they are focused on reinventing the wheel (albeit a better, shinier wheel). This new DS is a perfect example. I wish companies would just sorta silently slip new hardware into their product and if someone notices just say "Oh yeah, we wanted to make it better." In an era of iphone arrivals being given equal status with the Second Coming, I am feeling tired of all these micro-improvements masquerading as major advancements, especially when it affects backwards compatibility. Systems used to have a life cycle and each new system represented a paradigm shift in technology and general improvement, such as the PS3s Blu-ray player or Xbox Live (as a gaming service). Now they seem like half-steps. Oh yay video capture integration and social media features... that's... nice... I guess for those who actually want it. How about a processor, GPU, and RAM architecture to match a PC... oh.. ok... guess that wasn't a priority.

All that being said, I'm glad for the inclusion of a "C" button. Dual sticks have always been the future of any console, so I'm glad the DS is getting on. What is up with those colours on the buttons though? The X was all right, but a red A button, green Y and yellow B... what madness is this!!! I mean I know it's not an Xbox, but a little uniformity wouldn't hurt. It's not a copyright thing, plenty of generic game pads have the Xbox layout.

Lvl 64 Klutz:
For the love of living christ, Nintendo -- FIRE THE GUY NAMING YOUR SHIT!

doubt they will
by now, it's tradition to have shit names

the new C Button doubles as a second thumb stick... are you kidding me? Look at the size of that thing!
take a page from VITA Nintendo, even if the device is unpopular at least it's control scheme is well designed and adequately sized for human hands

My 3ds doesn't feel very old, and I honestly didn't get that much life out of it. They seem to be starting strong though, so if they can deliver a great Fire Emblem title I may get one in a few years. I don't have the money for all these new fangled contraptions right now. It's a good thing I'm a trendy shopper. Video Games are an expensive hobby : P

edtit: I hope the release a better U.S. trailer. They just released a 2ds, and I'm not sure kids and parents are going to know what to make of all these variations. It's not even clear that it's a new handheld. Get the marketing team from Microsoft. If they can manage to make Halo look good, they can do anything. I call this marketing:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKG1nvV1Wnc

JoJo:
Okay, I don't know how to feel about this news. The 3DS doesn't feel that old to me, I'm somewhat loath to be thinking about investing in the next model already. I suppose it'll depend on how many games are exclusive to this one, is it really called the 'New 3DS' though? Please say that's a working name, even by video game standards that sounds awkward and unoriginal.

I have felt the 3DS has been "OLD" since the day it came out, its a slow piece of hardware, was really rough on battery life and the 3D just doesn't work with a compounded issue with poor control setup made it outdated the second it came out really.

So to say I have been waiting anxiously for an update. I thought sure the reason for the delay is that they cant decide to drop the 3D functions or improve it so its not so terrible. if you really can view the 3d at the angles they are showing that should help, though I still think the technology needs more work to make it better for the portable envoirment. if you can't play it on a buss or train without having a seizer you need to rethink the technology.

so for me who plays the 3DS all the time and has been frustrated with the controls, 3D and the hardware for the unit. I'm pleased. But hopefully its the big step this unit needs as I hate that whole apple *new* this or whatever like its a rebranding. ignore the old one, get the NEW version. what is the new version? It's whatever WE give you, now give us your money!

Kuredan:

All that being said, I'm glad for the inclusion of a "C" button. Dual sticks have always been the future of any console, so I'm glad the DS is getting on. What is up with those colours on the buttons though? The X was all right, but a red A button, green Y and yellow B... what madness is this!!! I mean I know it's not an Xbox, but a little uniformity wouldn't hurt. It's not a copyright thing, plenty of generic game pads have the Xbox layout.

It's the colors of the Japanese Super Famicom.

image

I only JUST got the 3DS and then they announce this? I seriously have this sinking feeling that Pokemon Company was like "lol we've done a new core game and remakes for the generation, better get working on the next console" Just saying there might be a conspiracy. or a vicious cycle.

No, no, nonoonononoooooo. What the fuck Nintendo, there is nothing good about this. You are having a hard enough time getting people to realize the WiiU isn't just a new version of the Wii, how the hell do you expect to sell theses things? And exclusive games? Really? Yea forcing people to upgrade to a slightly better version of the handheld they just bought is going to go over faaaaaantasticaly. Also is the article implying that little "C button" is suppose to replace the circle pad? It better not mean that, because that little shitty nub thing is not even close to good enough to replace a proper stick. Normally I like Nintendo's handhelds even if I loath their consoles, but I'll buy a PS Vita before I buy this giant pile of what the fuck.

roseofbattle:

The New 3DS is faster thanks to a faster CPU. Because of this games made specifically for the New 3DS will not be supported on older models. Xenoblade Chronicles, which came out on the Wii in 2010 in Japan (2011 in Europe and Australia, 2012 in North America), is one such case. It will make use of the New 3DS's upgraded hardware and will not be playable on the older 3DS.

To heck with the stupid c button. This is the bigger issue. The 3DS is less than 4 years old and they're already foisting a new system on us. I don't want to spend another $200+ on a new gameboy when I just did so for the 3DS XL 2 years ago.

major_chaos:
No, no, nonoonononoooooo. What the fuck Nintendo, there is nothing good about this. You are having a hard enough time getting people to realize the WiiU isn't just a new version of the Wii, how the hell do you expect to sell theses things? And exclusive games? Really? Yea forcing people to upgrade to a slightly better version of the handheld they just bought is going to go over faaaaaantasticaly. Also is the article implying that little "C button" is suppose to replace the circle pad? It better not mean that, because that little shitty nub thing is not even close to good enough to replace a proper stick. Normally I like Nintendo's handhelds even if I loath their consoles, but I'll buy a PS Vita before I buy this giant pile of what the fuck.

Game Boy Color and the DSi say hello. Did everyone forget that Nintendo does this...like EVERY handheld has the same cycle? (New system --> Improved System (repeat this step maybe once or twice) --> 1.5 Edition with exclusives attached to keep buying power --> New System) The only one that broke it was the Advanced line, and that was because 4 years was too short to have a 1.5 Advanced.

thenightgaunt:

roseofbattle:

The New 3DS is faster thanks to a faster CPU. Because of this games made specifically for the New 3DS will not be supported on older models. Xenoblade Chronicles, which came out on the Wii in 2010 in Japan (2011 in Europe and Australia, 2012 in North America), is one such case. It will make use of the New 3DS's upgraded hardware and will not be playable on the older 3DS.

To heck with the stupid c button. This is the bigger issue. The 3DS is less than 4 years old and they're already foisting a new system on us. I don't want to spend another $200+ on a new gameboy when I just did so for the 3DS XL 2 years ago.

Why are so many people thinking this is a new system? It's a graphical update. Like the Gameboy Color and the DSi (though DSi's update was better online).

I looked at that picture, and my first thoughts were, respectively
"Oh, so they still haven't built in a second stick." and
"Weird that the power switch is a face button... Oh."

That second stick is a little useless baby, but I guess it's better than the attachment you have to use now.

xaszatm:

major_chaos:
No, no, nonoonononoooooo. What the fuck Nintendo, there is nothing good about this. You are having a hard enough time getting people to realize the WiiU isn't just a new version of the Wii, how the hell do you expect to sell theses things? And exclusive games? Really? Yea forcing people to upgrade to a slightly better version of the handheld they just bought is going to go over faaaaaantasticaly. Also is the article implying that little "C button" is suppose to replace the circle pad? It better not mean that, because that little shitty nub thing is not even close to good enough to replace a proper stick. Normally I like Nintendo's handhelds even if I loath their consoles, but I'll buy a PS Vita before I buy this giant pile of what the fuck.

Game Boy Color and the DSi say hello. Did everyone forget that Nintendo does this...like EVERY handheld has the same cycle? (New system --> Improved System (repeat this step maybe once or twice) --> 1.5 Edition with exclusives attached to keep buying power --> New System) The only one that broke it was the Advanced line, and that was because 4 years was too short to have a 1.5 Advanced.

Advanced had the GBA SP- the first clamshell design. It also brought an inbuilt backlight, and rechargable battery.

You're right, this is absolutely the norm for ol' ninty.

Fox12:
My 3ds doesn't feel very old, and I honestly didn't get that much life out of it. They seem to be starting strong though, so if they can deliver a great Fire Emblem title I may get one in a few years. I don't have the money for all these new fangled contraptions right now. It's a good thing I'm a trendy shopper. Video Games are an expensive hobby : P

edtit: I hope the release a better U.S. trailer. They just released a 2ds, and I'm not sure kids and parents are going to know what to make of all these variations. It's not even clear that it's a new handheld. Get the marketing team from Microsoft. If they can manage to make Halo look good, they can do anything. I call this marketing:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKG1nvV1Wnc

Too true - the variations thing in particular strikes home. Hopefully this is an early name, but even so, it's already a mistake not to be giving this a completely separate-sounding name, or incremental-new sounding name. It's a lesson that the Wii U sales debacle should've taught them.

I was in a best buy, and saw a mom holding up a Wii U game asking if it worked for regular Wii. I was so disappointed in the species.

Have Nintendo given up on thinking of new names for their products? I'm half expecting their next handheld after this to be the 'Next New 3DS' followed by 'Yet Another New 3DS' with the obvious XL variants too. Although it might be because they think their customers are idiots for not realising that the WiiU was a new console and not an accessory for the Wii and they are literally spelling it out for them rather than doing some marketing.

"LL"? What kind of name is that? I can't unthink of it standing for "Large Large". :/

Sounds to me like the DSi, GBC; it's a stopgap until we get the new handheld. Give it another two years and we'll see the next one; Nintendo's not going to make a brand new system until about five years have passed.

xaszatm:

Game Boy Color and the DSi say hello.

I'm almost positive that all gameboy games would play on both GB and GBC (Though I was young at the time so my memory might be off), and I have no idea what you are talking about with DSi "exclusives". I assume they made like, 1 half assed gimmick game that used the camera? because I have a had a sizable DS library with just the lite and never encountered anything that wouldn't run. This isn't the normal optional convince update, this is a mandatory to play upcoming retail games hardware update.

-Dragmire-:
Will it be priced above the $200 mark?

Well, the Japanese Nintendo Direct put the prices for these new systems at 16,000 and 18,800 yen respectively, which at current exchange rates comes up to about ~153 and ~180 dollars.

I'm guessing either the new versions will be priced slightly higher than the current ones, but not by much OR the new versions will be priced the same as the older models while the old ones get a price drop. My bet is on the latter as that seems like the smartest move for Nintendo.

xaszatm:

thenightgaunt:

roseofbattle:

The New 3DS is faster thanks to a faster CPU. Because of this games made specifically for the New 3DS will not be supported on older models. Xenoblade Chronicles, which came out on the Wii in 2010 in Japan (2011 in Europe and Australia, 2012 in North America), is one such case. It will make use of the New 3DS's upgraded hardware and will not be playable on the older 3DS.

To heck with the stupid c button. This is the bigger issue. The 3DS is less than 4 years old and they're already foisting a new system on us. I don't want to spend another $200+ on a new gameboy when I just did so for the 3DS XL 2 years ago.

Why are so many people thinking this is a new system? It's a graphical update. Like the Gameboy Color and the DSi (though DSi's update was better online).

Right, except that with the DSi, every game you could play in it (with 5 exceptions as per Wikipedia) you could play on a DS or DS lite.

I could play the GB Color version of Bomberman on my GB Pocket way back when, the only difference being that certain functionality was limited.

joshuaayt above brought up the GBA SP. There is no game you can play on that that you can't also play on a GBA, it's just a nicer experience. The same sort of thing is true for the 2DS/3DS/3DSXL line.

We don't really have enough information (I don't think) about the new console yet to know how exclusive it'll be when games for it are released - is this Xenoblade an exception or a norm? Are there going to be a lot of games that are released for the new console that can't be played on a standard 3DS, or just 3 or 4? I don't think the latter is going to be the case for viable business reasons. I predict it's the "next in the series" issue, and a better marketing campaign will be needed to reflect it.

Urgh, I know this is par for the course for Nintendo, and I really want this new 3DS, but I just got my first one a year ago.
At least when I replaced my color for advanced they were three years apart.

The exclusive games thing really pisses me off too, and I bet that will only confuse the consumer base even farther.

major_chaos:

xaszatm:

Game Boy Color and the DSi say hello.

I'm almost positive that all gameboy games would play on both GB and GBC (Though I was young at the time so my memory might be off), and I have no idea what you are talking about with DSi "exclusives". I assume they made like, 1 half assed gimmick game that used the camera? because I have a had a sizable DS library with just the lite and never encountered anything that wouldn't run. This isn't the normal optional convince update, this is a mandatory to play upcoming retail games hardware update.

GBC had a few that could play on the GB with black and white screens. Pokemon Gold and Silver would get errors in the game while playing on a traditional Game Boy and others wouldn't work. DSi had a number of exclusives on their digital eshop. Granted, they were mostly ported to the 3DS when it was released so not many people remember them as exclusives to the DSi.

And that's what I'm assuming here as well. These exclusives are stopgap measures to ensure that new people buy the latest rendition before the new system is announced. Besides, the new 3DS hardware wasn't a surprise. We had hints of this since earlier this year when the NFC was explain in a bit more detail, with Nintendo saying that the 3DS will have improvements.

Also, Xenoblade Chronicles is this important? Don't get me wrong, it's a great game, but have you seen the 3DS version? It doesn't look like an improvement. The framerate seems wonky as all hell and it looks like this system is just barely able to handle it. I'd suggest the Wii version of this new one.

Aerosteam:
"LL"? What kind of name is that? I can't unthink of it standing for "Large Large". :/

It has to do with how they size their clothing. Shirt sizes come in S, M, L, LL, LLL, etc.

144:

xaszatm:

thenightgaunt:

To heck with the stupid c button. This is the bigger issue. The 3DS is less than 4 years old and they're already foisting a new system on us. I don't want to spend another $200+ on a new gameboy when I just did so for the 3DS XL 2 years ago.

Why are so many people thinking this is a new system? It's a graphical update. Like the Gameboy Color and the DSi (though DSi's update was better online).

Right, except that with the DSi, every game you could play in it (with 5 exceptions as per Wikipedia) you could play on a DS or DS lite.

I could play the GB Color version of Bomberman on my GB Pocket way back when, the only difference being that certain functionality was limited.

joshuaayt above brought up the GBA SP. There is no game you can play on that that you can't also play on a GBA, it's just a nicer experience. The same sort of thing is true for the 2DS/3DS/3DSXL line.

We don't really have enough information (I don't think) about the new console yet to know how exclusive it'll be when games for it are released - is this Xenoblade an exception or a norm? Are there going to be a lot of games that are released for the new console that can't be played on a standard 3DS, or just 3 or 4? I don't think the latter is going to be the case for viable business reasons. I predict it's the "next in the series" issue, and a better marketing campaign will be needed to reflect it.

They have announced that there will be other exclusives to this system, though that could mean exclusives akin to the DSi. Besides, if it was a new handheld, they'd probably hold something bigger than a Japanese-only Direct. Remember that Japan doesn't have the 2DS so this is their latest update to the handheld.

xaszatm:

major_chaos:

xaszatm:

Game Boy Color and the DSi say hello.

I'm almost positive that all gameboy games would play on both GB and GBC (Though I was young at the time so my memory might be off), and I have no idea what you are talking about with DSi "exclusives". I assume they made like, 1 half assed gimmick game that used the camera? because I have a had a sizable DS library with just the lite and never encountered anything that wouldn't run. This isn't the normal optional convince update, this is a mandatory to play upcoming retail games hardware update.

GBC had a few that could play on the GB with black and white screens. Pokemon Gold and Silver would get errors in the game while playing on a traditional Game Boy and others wouldn't work. DSi had a number of exclusives on their digital eshop. Granted, they were mostly ported to the 3DS when it was released so not many people remember them as exclusives to the DSi.

And that's what I'm assuming here as well. These exclusives are stopgap measures to ensure that new people buy the latest rendition before the new system is announced. Besides, the new 3DS hardware wasn't a surprise. We had hints of this since earlier this year when the NFC was explain in a bit more detail, with Nintendo saying that the 3DS will have improvements.

Also, Xenoblade Chronicles is this important? Don't get me wrong, it's a great game, but have you seen the 3DS version? It doesn't look like an improvement. The framerate seems wonky as all hell and it looks like this system is just barely able to handle it. I'd suggest the Wii version of this new one.

Pokemon Gold and Silver were designed to be GB-compatable, with functionality that could utilize the GBC. If you were getting serious errors, there was something wrong with your game. Which is obvious by the shape of the cartridge and the wikipedia entry.

Here's hoping that they don't release any New 3DS-exclusive Ace Attorney games.

Lvl 64 Klutz:
For the love of living christ, Nintendo -- FIRE THE GUY NAMING YOUR SHIT!

Could be worse. Could have been named something that's supposed to be cool but just comes off as pointless. Like when the new Xbox was called Xbox 360, and the one after that -- the third Xbox -- was called "Xbox One."

xaszatm:
Why are so many people thinking this is a new system? It's a graphical update. Like the Gameboy Color and the DSi (though DSi's update was better online).

Because
1. More Buttons
2. Games released for it that are unplayable on older models

And there's the undeniable fact that people are going to have to dish out another $200-$300 in order to be able to play these new games.

I am going to be seriously insulted if Smash Bros 3DS runs faster and/or plays better on New 3DS models.

Also, Game Boy Color was released almost 10 years after the original Game Boy. Your point would be compelling if, say, the Game Boy Pocket had games that were exclusive to it only to have the Color be released 3 years after, but it wasn't. It's been 3 years since the 3DS was out. And it isn't like the DSi, where their only exclusive titles were moot downloadables, we're talking full-fledged, exclusive games here.

This is stupid for a number of reasons:
1. Developers are going to be totally confused as to whether or not to produce a game that's going to utilize the new controls and features, or to produce for a system that people already have, and
2. The number of people that have $200-300 to blow on a New 3DS
3. The inevitable "Parents are confused" situation that will happen when parents/relatives can't tell that a New 3DS-only-compatible game from a 3DS-compatible game. See how confusing that last part of that sentence was? Exactly.
4. When children who have a 2DS want to play New 3DS exclusives but can't because there is no 2D-equivalent

I'm not upset by the fact we're getting upgrade tech.
what I am upset by is they're basically giving us a new handheld really soon (about 2-3 years after the 3DS initially launched). the 3DS is actually successful! And there are a lot of special edition models that people went out of their way to get. By making an entirely new device for which only certain games will function, they are basically forcing our hand into getting the new device. Which is more frustrating if you don't have the spare money or already have a 3DS that you don't want to get rid of or upgrade from. Not to mention the games tied to the device. I don't know if those will transfer over easily unless they've updated that during the 3DS's lifetime that I'm unaware of.

All that said, this seems like a bad move. I get it. And I think there's some good ideas behind it. But I don't think its a great move overall when, right now, the 3DS is sitting on high and doing great. I can't imagine people are willing to jump to this new platform too quickly.

xaszatm:

Also, Xenoblade Chronicles is this important? Don't get me wrong, it's a great game, but have you seen the 3DS version? It doesn't look like an improvement. The framerate seems wonky as all hell and it looks like this system is just barely able to handle it. I'd suggest the Wii version of this new one.

I'm not specifically worried about Xenoblade because I allready have the Wii version (somehow. those disks are fucking pressed unobtaniuim), I'm worried that
A. all future major 3DS exclusives are going to require this version in order to drive sales and
B. this sets an ugly precedent if it does well. Can you imagine Microsoft latching onto this concept? "Now introducing the Xbox one.5!!! The totaly optional (lol not really) upgraded version of the Xbox One!! Now exactly the same but with faceplates and 1GB more RAM! Only $499! Get yours now, because otherwise you can't play Halo 6 suckers"

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