Nintendo 3DS Guide


Posted March 25, 2011 - By Dana Leahy

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The launch of the Nintendo 3DS is just around the corner. As a public service, we've put together this Nintendo 3DS guide to tell you everything you need to know if you're in the market to buy one, or if you've just picked one up at the store.

Nintendo 3DS
Release Date: March 27th, 2011
MSRP: 249.99

Nintendo 3DS Hands-On Preview »

What Is It?

The Nintendo 3DS is the newest iteration of Nintendo's handheld console, the Nintendo DS. Arguably only a little less powerful than the Wii when it comes to graphical horsepower, the 3DS boasts 3D graphics without the need for any stupid glasses. The console was first announced at E3 2010 during the Nintendo Press Conference when women with the device strapped to their belts wandered through the audience. While the pretty ladies were nice, the real star of the show was the 3DS, wowing the gaming press with its glasses-less 3D and powerful graphics.

What Does It Do?

Along with its 3D capabilities, the 3DS also displays 2D graphics at a much higher frame rate than before. The 3DS is also backwards compatible, meaning it will play your old DS games. The new handheld also includes a front facing camera and a 3D camera on the back, which allows users to take a picture of anything and display it in--hold on to your hats--three dimensions.

Nintendo 3DS Girls Give G4 A Nintendo 3DS »


The 3DS comes pre-loaded with some different software options including AR Games, a set of mini-games played in 3D with paper cards; Face Raiders, a game that incorporates your face and the faces of your friends in a 3D shooter; Mii Maker, an avatar editor; and StreetPass, a system that allows your 3DS to pass information to another 3DS if they are in the same room/bus/train for a period of time. There's also a Sound Editor, a messaging system and an Activity Log.

What Games Are Available For It At Launch?

There's an impressive number of games available for the 3DS at launch, but whether the content is actually impressive. The reviews of the games we've taken a look at so far have been mixed. Below, you'll find a list of the 3DS launch titles. For games we've reviewed, you'll find a quote from the review. For the rest, you'll find links to the game detail pages where you can read more about the games. We'll be rolling out our 3DS launch reviews into next week, so be sure to check back from the rest of the titles. 

Pilotwings Resort

From Jake Gaskill's review:

"PilotWings Resort hits the same highs and same lows of the previous two games, but it does it in skeptic-converting 3D. The game doesn't last long, but it's a beautiful, (at times) peaceful ride that sets a solid foundation for what the 3DS is capable of delivering in the future."

Read the rest of our Pilotwings Resort Review.

Steel Diver

From Steve Johnson's review: 

"This soggy submarine simulator gives players three ways of pretending to be a U-boat captain, but even with the different modes, Steel Diver is more of a beefed-up tech demo for the Nintendo 3DS than a full game."

Read the rest of our Steel Diver Review.

Super Street Fighter IV 3DS Online & Control Systems Preview »

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Super Street Fighter IV 3DS

From Brian Leahy's review: 

"The 3DS version of Super Street Fighter IV is, for all intents and purposes, a port of the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of the game, though there are several notable changes and the addition of a new 3D fighting mode. Visually, the game looks great for a handheld the animations look just as crisp as they do on the console version. Sure, the backgrounds are static and the framerate drops when you enable 3D, but this is definitely a solid looking title."

Read the rest of our Super Street Fighter IV 3D Review.

Nintendo 3DS Guide

Madden NFL

From Kevin Kelly's review: 

"Madden first appeared on the DS platform with Madden NFL 05, and left that platform with Madden NFL 09. Ostensibly so they could put a lot of time into developing Madden NFL Football for the 3DS, right? Wrong. This title represents an unfortunate step backwards for the franchise on Nintendo's fledgling handheld. Some innovations have bridged the gap between releases, but some of the oversights are pretty unforgiveable."

Read the rest of our Madden NFL Football 3DS Review.

LEGO Star Wars 3: The Clone Wars

From Leah Jackson's review: 

"LEGO Star Wars 3: The Clone Wars for the Nintendo 3DS is the latest installment of the now very hefty saga of LEGO games. The game manages to charm and entertain both longtime Star Wars fans, as well as brand new ones, for hours on end. With new planets to explore, over 80 characters to collect, and tons of replayability, this little gem will keep all generations of nerds whacking their micro lightsaber at LEGO bricks for a long long time."

Read the rest of our LEGO Star Wars 3: The Clone Wars 3DS Review.

Asphalt 3D
Combat of Giants: Dinosaurs 3D
Ridge Racer 3D
Bust-A-Move Universe
Rayman 3D
Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars
Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 3D
Samurai Warriors: Chronicles
Super Monkey Ball 3D
Nintendogs + Cats

Did you already, or are you planning to, pick up a 3DS this weekend?

Nintendo 3DS Guide


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