Nintendo 3DS: Should You Pre-order?

Posted: Feb 9 2011, 3:10pm CST | by , Updated: Feb 9 2011, 3:13pm CST, in Shopping | Gaming Gear


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Trying to decide on the Nintendo 3DS or not? Let me help!

We have spent a lot of time running down the Nintendo 3DS and the specs the little portable has. Specs don’t tell the whole story when it comes to making a buying decision though and especially not with some of the press that the 3DS has received about health warnings and Nintendo's own admission that kids under 6 should not play it for extended periods. If you are thinking about pre-ordering the console, but you are on the fence I can try to help you make your decision.

The big feature with the 3DS is obviously that the console can play games in 3D. One potential problem with 3D is that some people can’t physically stand 3D effects without starting to feel ill. This isn’t the fault of the 3DS, it just happens to some folks. A very good indication of if you or your kids will be able to handle playing games on the 3DS is how well you handle 3D movies at the theater.

If you are the sort that gets nausea before long during 3D movies or gets headaches or tired eyes when watching 3D flicks at the theater, odds are you will have some of the same problems with the 3DS. The good thing about the 3DS is that the screen needs no glasses and the 3D effects can be turned off allowing you to play the games in plain old 2D mode if you start feeling ill.

As for the warning about kids and their eye health, there have been some medical groups that have claimed the 3DS is fine for kid's eyes. The moral of the story is that you just need to watch how much time young kids play the console.

Other than the screen, the price of the 3DS is another sticking point that will keep some folks from buying. I know there are a lot of people that think if they wait long enough they will be able to save some money on the 3DS. I just don’t see the 3DS getting any cheaper than the $249.99 price point for the foreseeable future. The console is new and odds are there will be shortages to start with. I don’t expect to see shortages like we saw with the Wii early on, but I also think that at least in the beginning there will be some shortages of the 3DS. That means if you want one at launch you really need to pre-order. Considering the tech inside, $249.99 isn't a bad deal.

One of the reasons that Nintendo announced the console so early with shipment not set until the end of March is that they wanted to be able to talk to game developers openly about launch titles. The 3DS has a large number of game titles that will be available at launch. Some people think waiting a while after the launch of a new game console will mean more games will be available. The 3DS will have a long list of titles at launch. If you are thinking about getting a 3DS, you may also be wondering about accessories.

I haven’t spent hands on time with the 3DS, but judging by Nintendo's history I doubt that any of your accessories from the DS or DSi will work with the 3DS. Nintendo even changed the design of the charger between the DS and DSi so you had to buy new car adapters and all. The only part I would expect to directly cross over to the 3DS from previous Nintendo portables is the stylus. Otherwise, if you think you can't live without one of the accessories you have on your portable now and you want it on the 3DS, you need to just plan on ordering them.

Things like protective silicone cases or hard cases to keep you from breaking the 3DS if (or when) you drop it are no brainers and should just be figured into the price of the console for the sake of not destroying the gadget on day one by accident. This is especially true if the console is for kids. Another must have accessory will be screen protectors. Scratched screens will happen quickly if you aren’t careful, thin screen protectors applied over the LCDs will keep the screen clear and make the graphics look better over the long haul.

My suggestion would be to get a starter kit like the one from Icon simply called the 3DS Starter kit. It has a case, car charter, headphones, a wrist strap and a couple cases for organizing games. The kit is only $20 too making it a steal considering the Nintendo branded cases alone are almost that much. Sometimes the downside to buying gear that isn’t Nintendo branded is poor quality. I haven't used the Icon kit so just be aware that sometimes off brand accessories might not be the best, BUT they are much better than nothing. That kit doesn't appear to include screen protectors, which I highly recommend.

In the end, the 3DS will be very popular and no matter if you play with 3D on or off the games will be fun. Nintendo is betting big on the 3DS and this will be one of the most popular gadgets of the year. Pre-order while you can and I don’t see anyone regretting it.

Order your 3DS and accessories using these links and have fun!

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/3" rel="author">Shane McGlaun</a>
Leading our review center, Shane McGlaun (Google) knows technology inside out. His extensive experience in testing computer hardware and consumer electronics enable him to effectively qualify new products and trends. If you want us review your product, please contact Shane.
Shane can be contacted directly at




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