Nintendo 3DS Review: Bundled Games and Features
Nintendo’s varied 3DS launch line-up offers something for everyone. Should you not wish to go for any of the launch day titles there’s still plenty of software, including games that come pre-installed on the 3DS to keep you occupied come launch day. Here Stephen Ebert gives his verdict on what 3DS fans can expect.
The bundled software means 3DS owners without any games for it won’t have to leave their new console in the box until something they fancy comes along. That’s because Nintendo has included a couple of interesting games and features already on board the 3DS. Let’s check them out.
The pick of the pre-bundled 3DS goodies. AR games is a series of augmented reality games. In the box you get a handful of AR cards. AR Games is activated by placing one of these cards on a surface and pointing the 3DS camera at it – bringing to life games such as a shooting gallery where you navigate around targets by physically moving the 3DS around them. Also included is an enjoyably simple golf game, further showing off potential use for the 3DS camera for gaming. AR games is an outstanding first showcase of what the 3DS will bring to handheld gaming.
Face Raiders is another of those augmented reality games that show off the fun potential of the 3DS. Players take a photo of themselves to be teleported into the game as flying boss enemies that fly around your vicinity as you physically wave the 3DS around in an attempt to shoot them down. Face Raiders has a novelty appeal but also happens to be some of the most fun you’ll have with the 3DS come launch day. Face Raiders is another impressive demonstration of the exciting gameplay experiences the 3DS has to offer, and may do in future.
Nintendo 3DS Sound
Nintendo 3DS Sound lets you listen to any music you have stored on an SD card, as long as it’s in MP3 or AAC format. You can also record and play voice recordings before adding filters and sound effects to your voice. As 3DS features go this is likely to be one of the least used. Although user-friendly, its interface is likely to stop many from using it for listening to music.
The 3DS features a pedometer built-in. Close the 3DS, go for a walk and it’ll count each step and display them on the home screen, even rewarding you with coins to purchase new AR Games. The pedometer itself is incredibly accurate. And with rewards on you’ve got every excuse to take the 3DS out for a stroll.
Mii Maker is a neat little feature letting you create your own 3DS avatar in the same way Nintendo Wii owners have been doing. Nintendo hasn’t skimped on the 3DS version of its Miis. You can even let you snap a photo of yourself to give you a starting point based on what you look like making the process that much easier. There’s something very appealing about handling a mini virtual version of yourself at your fingertips – even more so than on the Wii.
StreetPass Mii Plaza
The 3DS is able to communicate and share goodies with other 3DS consoles it comes into contact with when closed. StreetPass Mii Plaza takes the form of a virtual plaza where your own Mii avatar can interact with the Miis of other 3DS owners your console has come into contact with. Unfortunately we aren’t able to test this feature until the 3DS releases, but it looks promising.
Other features we haven’t mentioned here include the camera and internet browser. Check out our hardware review more on the 3DS camera. The internet isn’t available just yet, but will be through a system update.
Out of the box the 3DS is wonderfully wholesome package. Nintendo’s bundle of goods is an excellent showcase of the potential of the 3DS. AR Games and Face Raiders in particular are brilliant, while community features such as the Mii Maker and StreetPass Mii Plaza show that with the 3DS, Nintendo has big plans for Nintendo’s growing community of gamers.