Nintendo... seriously, the 2DS?

Let's think about this for a second, because I seriously think this is something worth thinking about for a second. Today, at the same time Nintendo revealed a much-needed price drop for the Wii U, it revealed a new 3DS model--one that removes the 3D and changes the design from the signature silhouette it spent the better part of a decade perfecting. After turning the once-floundering handheld into a best-selling powerhouse, it's stripping out its core identity and signature form-factor. It's redesigning it into something that looks like a doorstop, or a wedge of cheese. I... I think I understand this.

It's a low-priced model for kids. Yes, that's got to be it. We'll get our awesome 3DS upgrade (with a second circle pad and a better battery life!) another time--this one isn't for us. Sometimes we need to just, like, let Nintendo do its thing, and admit that it exists to create games that kids and adults can enjoy. All it is is Nintendo finally getting around to addressing the maybe-sort-of pseudoscience theory that 3D will cause children's eyeballs to leak from their skull (source). They're just trying to make something safer for the children.

And I guess it makes sense that, when you think of the children, that on the heels of the release of some massive 3DS games, Nintendo would want to make a version of its handheld that's cheaper. That isn't a bad idea. And, you know, whatever, it's more approachable for kids. We must remember the children in all of this. It's due out the same day that Pokemon X & Y are releasing, so it's technically a great option for parents looking to spend less and get… but… I…

I can't even. I tried. The 2DS? Come on. That doesn't make any damn sense. The 3DS was the "3D DS," that's the pun that Nintendo decided to go with on this one. The "2D DS"? That's just the original DS! That was a 2D DS. Didn't you think this through at all? How about, like, the 3DS Mini? 3DS Lite? 3DS2? 3DS Except Flat for Some Reason (3DSEFFSR)?

And I can't get behind how downright silly the thing looks. Sure, removing 3D makes sense because it lets you cut the price and people like spending less money on things, but removing the clamshell design doesn't. You pretty much have to keep it in a case at all times, especially if you're handing it to a god damn child. They're just going to get chocolate on it, or scratch it while twerking to their One Direction CD, or just doing whatever it is that stupid little children do. They're the target audience for this thing, right? Is that what we've decided? This… whatever the hell this is. Redesign? It's like the safety scissors of handhelds.

Also, I know I should move on from this, but, seriously, who keeps their 3DS screens all the way open at all times? This new design has both screens on the same level, right underneath each other, but that's hardly the most enjoyable or comfortable way to look at a two-screened handheld. The clamshell design is what lets you tilt them slightly, allowing for a much more ergonomic, enjoyable experience. But now that's not even an option, it's just one, big, flat ramp. Like, is this something that's really happening? Is this real life?

You know that kid at parties who talks too much? Drink in hand, way too enthusiastic, ponderously well-educated in topics no one in their right mind should know about? Loud? Well, that kid’s occasionally us. GR Editorials is a semi-regular feature where we share our informed insights on the news at hand. Sharp, funny, and finger-on-the-pulse, it’s the information you need to know even when you don’t know you need it.



We Recommend By ZergNet


  • alexandre-bret - August 30, 2013 11:48 p.m.

    Great idea, bad design and pricing. Only 30 minutes more battery power? Seriously?
  • Pruman - August 30, 2013 6:07 a.m.

    My nightmare scenario is that this thing sells like gangbusters, and all of the third parties and eventually Nintendo itself drop 3D from all the games, since the majority of the platform doesn't have it. As someone who was originally against the idea of the 3DS, then warmed to it to the point where I keep my 3D slider toggled fully on at all times, this prospect makes me very sad.
  • GOD - August 30, 2013 2:24 a.m.

    Shhhhhh. Ok everyone lets just not talk about it until it goes away on its own. It's basically a DS that targets the leapfrog audience. Just don't make eye contact.
  • GOD - August 30, 2013 2:27 a.m.

    Oh shit I just figured it all out. The reason they messed with the physical design is so they could fit that fat ass plastic stylus into it. Due to how much children are fixated with chewing on their DS styluses Nintendo will essentially make bank off of fake plastic pens. Well played.
  • CitizenWolfie - August 30, 2013 1:01 a.m.

    I think I'm still missing the point about why it doesn't have 3D capability. Games like Luigi's Mansion, Kid Icarus and Super Mario 3D Land are basically built around the fact that the screen has a tangible depth so playing them in 2D seems like playing a high end PC game with all the graphics on the lowest settings. And even more baffling to me is that if I want to play 3DS games in 2D, I already have a system for that. It's called the 3DS. I don't know why they don't just drop the price of the original model and put a huge "YOU CAN TURN THE 3D OFF!!!" sticker on the front.
  • BladedFalcon - August 30, 2013 11:54 a.m.

    Meh, not really, even with the 3D built around them, Mario 3D Land and Kid icarus played just fine (And arguably faster) in 2D. And IMO, the 3D is a fancy gimmick at best, an annoying distraction at worst, but either way it doesn't really add anything significant to the game experience. As for why not just drop the price of the original 3DS, well that's simple: Because everything about the original 3DS is more expensive than what the 2DS is made off. As hideous as the 2DS design is, it's starting to make sense why is cheaper: It's not foldable because there's no 2 screens anymore, only a big one to save costs.
  • Technodude - August 30, 2013 12:54 a.m.

    I agree the thing looks ridiculous. But it's blindingly obvious it was designed for the new Pokemon games. It only comes in two colours, both of them themed on the X and Y colour scheme. I don't think this will be as successful as the DS Lite by any stretch, but people will buy it just because it'll come bundled with Pokemon. To be honest I want a new DS for the 3DS exclusives but I'll just get a secondhand 3DS XL for the same price. On a side note, I've given up on the pokemon series now, the direction they're going in doesn't look good. The 2.5D stuff is so horrible looking on a low res, low graphics machine, the battle animations take an age to complete and the whole game is just generally slow, and the new Pokemon just get more and more ridiculous looking. They should either do what everybody wants and have an MMO version for the Wii U with decent looking full 3D graphics and character customisation, or bring back the 2D style from FR+LG/R+S and battles that didn't take 20 minutes to finish because you spent most of your time just watching the HP bars drop and XP bars fill up.
  • Relayer71 - August 29, 2013 9:48 p.m.

    Idiotic. The money saved will just go into a case for the damn thing. Get rid of 3d and those cameras and that should be enough to lower the cost - no need to mess with the physical design. The clam shell was one of N's best ideas going back to the 80's Game & Watch and it was awesome when they brought it back for the GBA. They could have just changed the form factor completely, for example, make it shaped like a tablet or phablet and make the screens the same size, top and bottom.
  • djwonka - August 29, 2013 1:08 p.m.

    On top of all of this, people should really stop reacting as if this is the 3DS successor--it is not. This does not destroy the 3DS or null out its existence. They are not forcing you to swap out your 3DS for a 2DS. It's just a different version for different people. Don't like it? Don't buy it.
  • CitizenWolfie - August 30, 2013 1:16 a.m.

    While you're completely right about "Don't like it? Don't buy it," I think the reason people are getting frustrated or mad about this is because it's adding another system to Nintendo's catalogue that sounds very similar to everything before it and it's confusing for casual consumers. But the big thing that annoys me personally about it is that the 3DS can already be played in 2D and as such, this seems like Nintendo are plugging money and resources into making redundant redesigns like these and not into making the first party Wii U and 3DS games that we really want. Every day Nintendo uses up on this side project is a day that Zelda U isn't getting made.
  • BladedFalcon - August 30, 2013 11:56 a.m.

    I doubt anyone is reacting as if this was the 3DS successor. Most of us are just baffled at how fucking ugly and non-portable it is.
  • djwonka - August 29, 2013 1:02 p.m.

    "but, seriously, who keeps their 3DS screens all the way open at all times?" Believe it or not, I do. I'm not sure why either. When I play my DS Lite, I keep it at the tilt, but on the 3DS, it just seems and feels more comfortable flat.
  • lucid_enigma - August 29, 2013 12:27 p.m.

    I have one of those little things called kids who has destroyed about 5 DSs (is that to many Ss?!? o_O) ALL of them would have to have been destroyed in a significantly different way had it not been for the weak ass hinges on the DS and DS-lite that were the parts that broke each time! (Try dropping a DS in the "clam open" status and you can probably replicate the problem) I would have loved for him to have this non-hinged version! Then he'd have to smash the screens instead! I would definitely buy this over a DS/3DS for a child under 6/7.
  • alecbeals - August 29, 2013 6:36 p.m.

    Im more curious as to what was going through your mind as you went go buy their 3rd one
  • lucid_enigma - August 30, 2013 7:59 a.m.

    lol. It probably related to ADHD assessments, insurance deals and/or protective cases!
  • pl4y4h - August 29, 2013 12:26 p.m.

    Classic wildcard Nintendo
  • Aquacure - August 29, 2013 9:58 a.m.

    So... NDS, DSLite, DSi, 3DS, 3DSXl now 2DS which is basically games that are 3D in game but without the 3D effect to the gamer? Okay Nintendo. I suppose next it'll be 2DSmiini or 2DS-xD.
  • Shinn - August 29, 2013 8:45 a.m.

    Having 3D enabled on the 3DS makes me feel blind after a few seconds, so a 2D model would definitely suit me (so I could give my 3DS to my girlfriend), but the design of the thing is just too terrible for me to spend money on.

Showing 1-20 of 91 comments

Join the Discussion
Add a comment (HTML tags are not allowed.)
Characters remaining: 5000


Connect with Facebook

Log in using Facebook to share comments, games, status update and other activity easily with your Facebook feed.