I came into Best Buy to play the Nintendo 3DS with high expectations. And once again, those expectations were surpassed. Next time, I need to come in with higher expectations. - J. Severe
Ever since E3 2010 when the Nintendo 3DS was first unveiled, I immediately knew I wanted it. I wanted to feel the circle pad, I wanted to see the 3D effects, I wanted to play the marvelous games that were on it! But alas, I would have to wait 'til it was released... until I could afford the $250 needed to get it. Well, I don't have $250. And here I am, on the day the 3DS is released. What's a guy to do? Well, the brilliant minds at Nintendo decided to set up demo units at numerous stores for poor folks to check out the device at no additional cost. Thankfully, I caught wind of this news and went right over.
Best Buy. That's where they were. Best Buy. So thus, after much anticipation and planning, I hoped a ride over to the nearby mall and went to the Best Buy there. After looking around the store, I finally came upon the "Games" section. I searched frantically around for the Nintendo 3DS demo unit! I found everything, Kinect, Wii, even Pokemon Black and White! But no 3DS... Could it be that my ambition had been crushed? That I had come too late and the 3DS was gone? Or that the store never had it at all?! No. I knew in my heart that could never be it. So I went up to a Best Buy employee and questioned her about where the 3DS was. She directed me to a little place I like to call, "Heaven's Corner." In order words, where the 3DS was set up.
The 3D Effect
First off, the 3DS is mainly marketed as the first gaming device that you don't need 3D glasses to... well, see the 3D. But the question on your mind is, how does it work? After all, one has to be in person with the 3DS to see its 3D effects. And I can tell you first hand that I did, and it's mind-blowing.
I admit, I thought the 3D on the 3DS was a bit more complex. I thought it'd be like big screen movie theater 3D with everything charging out at you and such. Then, once I came upon a 3DS, I noticed how small it is. Not that it was freakishly small, but that it was -- give or take -- the size of a DSi. From the pictures I saw, I thought it'd be a bit bigger. Honestly. So I came to reality that the 3DS was DSi-size, and that the screen on it wasn't movie theater screen big (obviously), and thus, the 3D would be a bit smaller.
Now, I was playing Pilotwings Resort, see? That game particularly had a lot of depth. Yes, depth. Not pop-out as one would expect, but good old fashion depth. With the 3D, I felt like I was actually inside. That I was within this Wuhu Island perimeter, piloting a plane, and trying to get through hoops. With the 3D off and 2D on, I felt like it was just a regular widescreen game. But the 3D on seemed to make it more real! More lifelike! Like I was looking out a window almost! I wish you guys could've seen it. But you have to see it for yourself to understand what I'm talking about. Otherwise I'm probably like a wacko to you. :p
I should also note that I noticed no big difference between the 3D when the depth slider was in the middle, or when it was at the top. It all seemed the same to me.
I went to Wal-Mart the Sunday after the day this blog was started, and saw a 3DS there too! Once I played it, I noticed the 3D effect more profoundly than before, and it seemed even cooler! Really noticed the depth and pop-out there.
The 3DS itself. As said before, the thing's tiny. Like a DSi. Smaller than I expected. Blame it on the full-screen photos I always see. Now the circle pad. I was most excited for that. I thought it'd be like a regular analog stick. No. It's not. It's smooth as heck, but I kinda imagined it'd feel softer when I used. Instead, when I moved it, it shot back into the middle when I let go of it as if it were being pulled by something magnetic. Not what I was expecting, but pretty cool if you think about it.
The "X, Y, A, and B" buttons were normal. As were the shoulder buttons. Nothin' I didn't see before. The volume slider was a nice throwback to the DS Lite. The "Power" reminded me of the DSi, so that felt normal. I was pressing the "Home" button a lot as I stressed to make the hasty transition from app back to menu. Felt... kind of awkward, really. Almost sticky. Like I had to press on it hard to make it work. Takes some getting used to, but at least it's effective. I imagine the same thing's with the "select" and "start" buttons.
The 3DS was tethered down to a stand so I couldn't move it too far back, and the whole back was covered so I couldn't see the label, nor could I insert a game into the slot. I also had trouble taking out the stylus, which was also tethered, from the back slot, but it was not much of a big deal. I expected these kinds of things from demo units anyway. The stylus is cool too. You can telescope it and everything. Felt nice and thin, too. Excellent overall. Oh, and it was shiny. The stylus was shiny. Metallic and stuff. It'd get the DS's stylus a run for its money.
The store had an Aqua Blue 3DS on display to play. I must say it looks better than I gave it credit for. Rather than being blue, it was more of a green-blue-ish color. Oh, and it was sparkly. I still prefer Cosmo Black though. I want my whole 3DS to match. But the Aqua Blue owners sure are getting a beautiful 3DS, I can give them that.
Playing the 3DS a second time, I have gotten used to the 3DS's size, and the circle pad feels better and softer than before.
The game I played was the demo version of Pilotwings Resort. Now, this game, the sequel to SNES's Pilotwings and N64's Pilotwings 64, and a launch title for the 3DS. Basically a flight simulation game, I spent some time with it, driving a plane through the Wuhu Island skies... With the 3D on, the tail of the plane seemed to be sticking out of the screen a bit. Either that, or I was just focused on it that much more. It's most likely the former, as the game showed much depth with the three-dimensionality on. Why, I was able to just distances with it and whatnot. See how far away the mountains were and so forth. I was probably too amazed by the 3D to actually focus on the game, cuz I kept crashing on the ground. -_-
You control the player characters with the circle pad, obviously, which does a good job. Why, if I had the money, I'd most likely go out and buy the game right now for the sake of owning the first game I ever played in 3D. However, many reviews claim the game doesn't have much to offer for $40. Well, those websites aren't my parents, so I could care less about what they say. I:)
I went to Wal-Mart to test out the 3DS there, and I had another round with Pilotwings. Now that I had become comfortable with it, I was ready to have fun. I was never good with flight simulations games like so, and I STILL ended up crashing into the ground, even with the added depth the 3D offered. Oh well. At least I got to play as a Mii in a jetpack. That alone is a boatload of awesomeness.
Nintendo 3DS Camera
I tried out the 3DS camera for a little bit. It seemed like a fancy doo-hickey. While I was aiming the camera around with the 3D on, I could actually sense the depth within the screen that I would get if I was looking out with my regular eyes. It was pretty cool. I also tested out the graffiti by scribbling over my taken photos with the stylus. That stylus works like magic. It's like a marker that never dries up. :p
Nintendo 3DS Sound
Forgot to try this out... so N/A.
Worked just like on the Wii, in other words, like a charm. I took a picture of one my siblings that was there, and, after a funny animation, there it was. The Mii. Looked a bit like my aforementioned sibling, not exactly (as Miis aren't exactly as realistic looking as other avatars), but pretty good. Well, as good as my sibling can look. Honestly, I'm surprised the cameras didn't crack. Probably because they're so small. Anyway, I was able to touch up the auto-made Mii, and it looked great! Well, as great as a Mii of my sibling can look. You know, maybe I should stop cutting on him now...
Creating a Mii from scratch was just like on the Wii, except with a few new options.
Fortunately, I brought my printed out AR cards to Best Buy, and I put them to good use. I only got to use my "?" card and not the Nintendo ones, as I had to unlock the "Star Viewer" game in order to use them, and I didn't nearly have as much time to do that. So... yeah.
Placing my AR card on a somewhat slanted surface, the camera focused in on the card, and the game began. A box showed up right on the card. Small... sm-small yellow box. No, not on the ACTUAL card. When you looked at the card on the 3DS. See, that's how the AR games work. They modify reality (ushering in the name "augmented reality") to give a great and fun new experience. Using the 3DS's motion sensors, I moved around, and even had to bend down, to get a good look at the box on the card. Once I got it right, the box opened up. And Target Shooting began! O_O!
Seeing that the 3DS was tethered down, there was only so far I could move, but I didn't care about that. I was hastily shooting at a bunch of targets! Heck, the card was even "in a hole", with the targets around it! And it was all in 3D! It was so glorious... After shooting down a bunch of things, I went head-to-head with a bloodthirsty dragon! I finally bested it, and emerged victor of the AR Games! (*Audience cheers*...)
Last, but not least, was Face Raiders. For starters, I took a pic of my older sibling who was ALSO there. He made a dumb pose. His face on the screen started to move around. And, before I knew it, it donned a samurai cap, made a smirk and vanished! Before I could exclaim "What the heck?", a whole bunch of my brother's heads came out of nowhere around me! Surprised, I shot at him with what seemed to be a tennis ball. He was out. But more were there. FWOOP! Took 'em out. More were there! I moved the 3DS around and, with more help with the motion sensors, my surrounds changed and I faced the hiding heads! FWOOP! FWOOP! I ended them!
Like the AR games, Face Raiders took place in the real world, so I was basically shooting heads in mid-air! Once again, this was an illusion from looking through the 3DS screen, but it was impressive nonetheless. After I took out a whole legion of floating heads, I faced one GIANT head, which was indeed my sibling's face from the start of it. I went through one last rumble, and through the great power of the 3DS, I brutally KILLED my brother's face and won!
Sounds crazy, don't it? It is. But most of the awesome things in the world were crazy at first. Like HD. Higher resolution? Please, that's nuts. See?
Parting is Such Sweet Sorrow
Soon came the time I was dreading since I came... the time to leave! O_O!!! I know... that's pretty gruesome isn't it? Worse than you can imagine. >_< So, I took my last photos and videos of the 3DS and went off. My time with the 3DS may have been brief, but it would surely be one I would NEVER forget.
Update: I forgot... wait... I remember! XD
In conclusion, the Nintendo 3DS is a great new system with lots of benefits for those lucky enough to try it out and/or own it. The 3D effects, as well as its built-in-software are grand to behold, and the controls are top-notch. Not only have I been able to try it out in its full glory, but now I want to own it that much, and am willing to KILL somebody up in here to get it. ^_^
Why do I give it a 8/10, you ask? Well, because I haven't been able to test out the full retail version of it yet. Perhaps once I do that I'll give it a higher score.
Written by J. Severe
Directed by J. Severe
Produced by J. Severe
Starring J. Severe as Himself
Narrated by J. Severe
Photos, Videos and Pictures taken/drawn by J. Severe
Best Buy, its products, and its store look are copyright of Best Buy, Inc.
Nintendo, their products, their games, and their awesomeness are copyright of Nintendo, Inc.
Copyright 2011, J. Severe Worldwide, LLC and Wikia Entertainment