Price cut or not, the 3DS's biggest flaw is still clear: there are no games

Price cut or not, the 3DS's biggest flaw is still clear: there are no games

Summary: Nintendo's move to cut the price of the 3DS to $170 is certainly unprecedented. But while the move is likely to move a few consoles, it doesn't solve the 3DS's biggest problem: the lack of games.

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TOPICS: Tech Industry
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To those not following Nintendo's struggles with the 3DS, the device's sudden, significant price drop might have come as a bit of a surprise. But for the rest of us, especially current 3DS owners, the news was altogether pretty expected. And welcome.

Here's the skinny: Sales of the 3DS since its February launch been pretty slim, to say the least. Since March, Nintendo has only moved 830,000 3DS units in the U.S., a figure that has likely inspired a bit of a panic in Nintendo. Hence the 3DS's price drop to $170, a 32% percent cut from the previous price. The price drop also came with the news that Nintendo is cutting its operating profit forecast from $2.2 billion to a relatively-paltry $449 million. Clearly, all is not well in the land of Nintendo.

Thankfully, this is a reality that Nintendo decided to rectify rather than ignore.  Of course, you can easily make the argument that the 3DS was priced too high to begin with, which was part of the reason so few consumers took the bait and purchased one. In any case, Nintendo's move to cut the price of the 3DS so quickly was an unprecedented one for the company. But it was a smart move, all told.

But the cut in price, while welcome, still fails to solve the single most fundamental issue with the 3DS as of July 2011: There are no damn games. The last legitimate hit was The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time 3D, but even that wasn't enough to move a sizable number of consoles. Throughout the history of game consoles, one thing has remained true above all others: A game console without games is no game console at all.

Thankfully, Nintendo is moving to change that. Super Mario 3D Land, the 3DS's first Mario title, is coming in November. Mario Kart 7 and Kid Icarus are both eyeing a December release. Slightly earlier, and a bit less exciting is the release of Star Fox 64 3DS, which is coming in September. Will these releases, coupled with the 3DS's price drop, revive the flagging 3DS? Considering that the future of the 3DS likely lies in what happens during the next five months, I'd certainly hope so.

Topic: Tech Industry

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  • RE: Price cut or not, the 3DS's biggest flaw is still clear: there are no games

    Honestly, games or not the device was hard to look at and I thought about it but I would have used it only in 2D.
    slickjim
    • RE: Price cut or not, the 3DS's biggest flaw is still clear: there are no games

      @Peter Perry <br>I own a 3DS. I love it; but I agree. 3D play is still quite fiddly. There's a matter of finding a "3D Sweetspot", adjusting the dial on the screen for it and everything else.<br><br>Not to mention that if you DON'T do this sort of tuning it severely limits your play by giving you a glorious headache. I can see why Nintendo offers parental controls to disable 3D. Even when you do tune it properly, oftentimes when you're playing games like LoZ:OOT3D, you end up having to move the system anyway because of the MOTION BASED controls. I love the motion based controls but it really ruins any 3D experience to be had by the system really. You can't move it effectively and NOT drastically cut your playtime by losing the sweetspot just enough to bring that 3D pain...thus requiring you to pause and relax your eyes a few minutes to recover.<br><br><br>Another problem is simply that the 3DS limits you too much. Because they got so paranoid about the homebrew commmunity, useful features like savegame transfers are out the window...all because of .00001% of said community actually pirated games. :<<br>(A recent System menu update threatens that it may render the system unplayable if the system is modified or used with unlicensed accessories, which I believe to be scaretactics.)<br><br>Lastly, the 3DS failed to bring much new to the table. Not even the DSi did spectacularly well, but it DID sell more on release I believe; because DSiWare was a significantly big enough feature addition. What does the 3DS have?<br><br>Motion controls(3DS titles only), 3d, 3d camera, Miis and Netflix? That really ISN'T much to justify upgrading. I considered not doing; but I had extra cash on my birthday to justify plonking down for it...so I did. I don't regret said purchase, but as a price-wise consumer I can see the release price being a big reason to give consumers pause, not to mention the lackluster release lineup and selection of 3DS games...which seem to take longer to create than a standard DS game does.
      ZazieLavender
  • RE: Price cut or not, the 3DS's biggest flaw is still clear: there are no games

    I agree that games sell systems, and so far Nintendo hasn't pushed any games to really sell this system. The same could have been said for the Nintendo Gamecube. When it was released, there were no AAA 1st party games. If you want to sell a Nintendo system, you'd better be sure that there is a Mario game that coincides with the system release, or else the system gets relegated to an afterthought purchase. People get excited with AAA titles like Mario. People could care less when a system only has tech demos available for it upon release (ie. Pilotwings in this case) Hopefully Nintendo will start cranking out the games people want to see - the 3Ds is a phenomenal little system, and very capable - it would be a shame to see it die before it had a chance to show the world what it could do. Hopefully Nintendo will release the Wii U next year with some AAA titles, or it too could face the same fate.
    Papamambo
  • RE: Price cut or not, the 3DS's biggest flaw is still clear: there are no games

    I believe the "No games for the 3DS" claim is an exaggeration<br>there are games that are worth your money like<br>- Pinball Hall of Fame: The Williams Collection<br>- Punch Time Explosion<br>- Pac-Man & Galaga Dimensions<br>- Tetris (releasing in October)<br>- Super Street Fighter IV: 3D Edition<br>- Dead or Alive Dimensions

    more on this: http://screwattack.com/blogs/Stuff-From-My-Mind/EXPECTATIONS-an-editorial
    CyberKFox