According to Wikipedia, less than six months after the 3DS’s initial release in February 2011, Nintendo had to reduce the price by almost $100 due to ‘disappointing sales’. In normal terms, this probably means that the only person who bought the thing was Mr. Nintendo’s mum. What I’m wondering is why they were so surprised that nobody wanted to buy the 3DS for such a ridiculous amount of money. It feels a bit silly to have to say it out loud, but surely as a game company they realise that the only reason anyone ever buys a new console is because games they absolutely breathlessly, heart-attackingly, tantrum-in-HMV need are available solely on it?
Let’s review just some of the games that came out with the amazing, revolutionary 3DS.
Pro-Evolution Soccer 3DS.
Way to make the most out of your ground-breaking 3D capabilities, Nintendo. Let’s watch tiny men kick a ball around. I might be biased about this one, but I honestly can’t think of anyone who would buy a 3DS in order to procure a miniaturised re-release of a fairly unexciting game that can be played on pretty much every other console ever.
No thanks, Nintendo. Spending $300 on a glorified Flash game is not on my To Do list for today.
Ridge Racer 3D
Hey, look, everyone. We can drive a car around like in every other racing game on every other console, except smaller. Also lumpier. For just $300.
Super Monkey Ball 3D
Maybe if it looks more spherical this time it’ll keep your attention for longer than a day.
The Sims 3
I’ve had my heart broken by The Sims handheld games before, Nintendo. Why would you open up that old wound? If I wanted to pay money to lose more respect for a beloved game I would buy Tomb Raider and sell it to Square Enix. Hang on…
Ocarina of Time remake
Tempting, I have to say. But then every time I was at all tempted by it I remembered that I could instead play the original on my GameCube for free. And without fear of an aneurysm or whatever it is they caution you about in the 3DS manual.
So I, like most of my peers, successfully saved the equivalent of $200. Instead, you’ll be delighted to know, I bought healthy food, a gym membership, some friends, and happiness. I was even assimilating back into the real world, having grown tired of all of my old Nintendo games.
And then came the Pokemon X&Y trailer. You know that feeling when you see something and you need it more than you need food for the next week? The kind of feeling that takes you back to being two years old and crying because you fell in love with a ratty stuffed dog toy in a charity shop and your mother doesn’t really want to touch it, much less buy it for you? Well, X&Y comes closer to that feeling than anything has in many a year.
Then came the trailer for the new Mystery Dungeon game. A sucker punch and then a right hook to the jaw.
I had to sell everything I’d bought with my 3DS money and instead I am living on the scraps my housemates drop between the sofa cushions.
I have no regrets.