First Looks// Nintendo 3DS

Posted 14 Mar 2011 18:01 by
Ooooh... Aaaah... Hmmmm...

Our brand-spanking new 3DS arrived this morning. It is very brand new and very spanking. Me and the 3DS have crossed paths before, but all-too fleetingly. Svend has crossed paths with it at more length. I, however, got to tear into it... I mean, 'gently unpackage it', obviously. I got the first look with SPOnG's very own 3DS.

Getting going is so easy I won't bother to bore you with it. After you've got the time and date and whatnot set up, there are four obvious things to do with your new 3DS. The first is to stick a game on. We're going to assume that for some reason you didn't bother to get a game with your brand new handheld, though, because otherwise we'll end up with a straightforward review. The other three involve the 3DS's built-in software.

You could, for example, create your Mii. The most eyeball-scorchingly obvious difference between doing this on the 3DS and doing it on the Wii is the fact that you can use a photo of your face as the basis of your Mii, should you so choose. It's a nice idea that's less than startlingly awesome in its execution. Before you even take a picture you have to select things like your gender, eye colour and hairstyle. The picture's then taken and you'll be left with a Mii that probably resembles you in that it has a face and you have a face, but then you'll be left with roughly the same tool set as you get on the Wii to make it actually look something like you. Still, it's nice to have the Miis on there. You can set things up so that you'll leave your Mii sat around on other gamers' 3DSes once you've played against them online.

You might otherwise make use of one of the two games you find already loaded onto your 3DS. First up is the snappily titled AR Games, which is a collection of augmented reality games. Like its partner, Face Raiders, this little collection really exists to show you what your 3DS can do. Included from the word go are a three mini-games Shooting, AR Shot and Fishing Star Pics (brings up some of your favourite Nintendo characters on a flat surface in front of you), Mii Pics (as before, but with Miis) and Graffiti (allows you to draw all over the environment around you through the magic of AR).

The games certainly come with a splash of 'oooh'-factor. The first time you fire up Shooting, using an AR card to tell the 3DS where in the real world it can pretend there are targets and then a dragon, it's very impressive. There's a dragon on your desk!!! And you can move around it, with it retaining its position. This means that your aiming reticule stays fixed to the centre of your screen and you move the whole 3DS to target things.
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