In an odd show of backpedaling and hubris, Nintendo has decided that the 3D effect isn’t quite what attracts people to the 3DS: it’s the games. Hence the launch of the new, entry-level Nintendo 2DS. The 2DS is a cut-down version of the existing 3DS hardware, containing the same guts inside (including Wi-Fi and all connectivity options), without the ability to display games in 3D. The design is odd, to say the least—it’s a standalone, non-clamshell device that looks more akin to the Game Boy line than its DS predecessors. Instead of “closing” the clamshell to put the device to sleep, there’s a rocker switch that flips the screens to “off.”
Putting it bluntly, it’s a weird piece of tech and a weird choice for Nintendo, overall. It seems geared towards the lower-end youth market but the front-facing design kind of kills that idea, because that was the appeal of the DS (and the GBA SP) line in the first place: you can flip down the system to protect the screens. Still despite the puzzling design, the sad fact is at $129, we here at 30lives will still buy the darn thing just to have it.
The Nintendo 2DS launches on October 12 (alongside Pokemon X and Y). Stay tuned for our hands-on review shortly thereafter!