Despite the fact that I enjoy technology and electronics, I’ve never been one to chase after the latest and greatest just for the sake of having it. That’s why I didn’t immediately jump on the bandwagon when the New Nintendo 3DS came out. I guess it was the name which was a bit off-putting to me. Was adding “new” to the name only a novelty or did it include significant upgrades from the last model? Recently, I was sent a Super Mario 3D Land Edition New Nintendo 3DS to test out. I have to say that is different in several ways.
New Nintendo 3DS — Inside the Box & 3DS Comparison
In this review, I will compare the New Nintendo 3DS to the Nintendo 3DS XL. It’s not a direct comparison because of the size difference but it should give you an idea of the features. Plus, it’s the only other model I own. 🙂 The XL is just a larger version of the same system and a New Nintendo 3DS XL is also available. I prefer the XL size since it feels better in my hands and the screens are larger. For smaller hands and younger eyes, the regular size is just fine. Munchkin is fine with either/both.
The model I received is the recently released Super Mario 3D Land Edition New Nintendo 3DS. It comes pre-installed with Super Mario 3D Land and two sets of faceplates. The retro 8-bit characters are super cute (especially since I’m an old school gamer) so I put those ones on right away. What’s not included is a power adapter. So, make sure you pick one of those up when you buy the system.
New Nintendo 3DS — Internal Changes
The main improvement is the 3D screen. It used to be a challenge to play in 3D since, to get the right effect, you had to hold it at just the right angle. In fact, it was usually such a hassle that we often turned the feature off and played in the normal 2D mode. WIth the New Nintendo 3DS, you have a wider viewing angle in the 3D mode. A new face-tracking technology uses the inner cameras to adjust the images. It actually works quite well and it is less tiring on the eyes.
Another feature added was the built-in amiibo support. Tap amiibo figures on the lower screen to unlock bonus items such as characters, outfits, content, etc. To use amiibo figures on the older 3DS, you have to buy a separate sensor. This ends up being an extra cost and one more thing to carry around. Plus, with another device to connect, it kind of defeats the purpose of a portable gaming system…
A major reason to upgrade from a Nintendo 3DS to a New Nintendo 3DS is the faster processing speed. The improved CPU means less time waiting for things to load. I noticed this right off the bat. It used to take forever to access options in the settings but now it loads in a jiffy. Games also seem to run smoother. The New Nintendo 3DS is backwards compatible so you can still play older games for systems such as the DS and DSi.
New Nintendo 3DS — External Changes
The physical layout of the system is changed as well. There are two new control buttons on the back called ZL and ZR. These offer more gaming and browsing options. A C Stick (similar to that knobby joystick on some laptops) has also been added for more precise control.
Select other items shifted a bit but functionality remains the same.
- The power button is now on the front instead of inside.
- The game slot is in the front instead of the back.
- The stylus is stored from the front instead of on the side.
- The Start, Select, and Home buttons were moved around.
- The volume switch is on the upper screen instead of on the side of the lower half. I like this better because it was sooooo easy to mess up the volume while playing before.
New Nintendo 3DS — New VS Old
I would definitely recommend upgrading to a New Nintendo 3DS if you have an active gamer in the house. With the faster processing speed, improved 3D imaging, amiibo support, and more controls, this “new” model offers a better overall gaming experience. Also, upcoming games will likely be built specifically for this model to maximize those improved features. The New Nintendo 3DS retails for $149.99 while the XL version is $199.99.
I received this item as part of my participation as a Nintendo Ambassador. All opinions are my own.