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If you haven’t heard yet, Nintendo is launching a brand new handheld in October that takes the concept of the Nintendo 3DS 3 Games That Make A Nintendo 3DS Worth Owning [MUO Gaming] 3 Games That Make A Nintendo 3DS Worth Owning [MUO Gaming] The Nintendo 3DS handheld gaming system got off to a rocky start, but it seems to be finding its stride as time goes on. In my opinion, the reason for this is that there are... Read More and crunches it down into a 2D sidekick. Nintendo fans are two things, if nothing else: loyal and critical. Nintendo supporters absolutely love the brand, and that love can sometimes look a lot like hate when Nintendo pushes out a product that fans feel aren’t up to their standards.

Nintendo has had a lot of flops 3 Reasons Why Nintendo Took A Financial Downturn [MUO Gaming] 3 Reasons Why Nintendo Took A Financial Downturn [MUO Gaming] It was not long ago that Nintendo was setting the video game world on fire with the two most popular gaming systems on the market. Sony and Microsoft were in an epic battle for second... Read More in the past. There was the Game Boy Printer, which allowed you to print out pictures you took with the Game Boy’s black-and-white camera. The N64 Transfer Pak was a pretty good concept, but was completely under-utilized by the console. How about Wii Speak? Finally, after seven years of every other major console doing it, Nintendo has jumped on! And then, fewer games used it than you can count on your fingers.

Is the Nintendo 2DS going to be next on the list? It can’t be that bad, but the internet is buzzing with negativity.

Launch Reception

Nintendo introduced the 2DS to the world in a less-than-stunning YouTube video of under one minute long.

Apparently, it’s a minute that the majority wish they could have back.

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With over 30,000 people contributing so far, it’s probably pretty safe to assume that we’ve got a large enough sample size to understand if the gaming community likes or dislikes the idea of this console. It’s not looking too good so far.

The video is under one minute long, because what is there to really introduce? In a nutshell, the Nintendo 2DS is the Nintendo 3DS without 3D capabilities and a price tag $40 cheaper. While there are other differences, such as the design, that’s the gist of its functionality. However, aren’t Nintendo fans used to the company rehashing consoles with such slight enhancements or differences? By this logic, it’s safe to say that the Nintendo 3DS XL What Is The Nintendo 3DS XL & Should You Get One? [MUO Gaming] What Is The Nintendo 3DS XL & Should You Get One? [MUO Gaming] The buzz around Nintendo’s Wii U has been rather lackluster. Much like the Wii, people seem confused by the new controller that is looking to revolutionize gaming, as we know it. In an effort to... Read More isn’t all too impressive either.

Here are the cliff notes on the comments of that video:

  • “Is this an April Fools joke?”
  • “Great, now I can break my screen even easier!”
  • “Just give us some games for the Wii U already.”

Target Audience & Price Point

The 2DS is said to be designed for kids between the ages of five and nine years old. Taking that into consideration, how many five or nine-year olds do you think cared enough to click that thumbs up or thumbs down on the YouTube launch video? It’s just something to think about!

The 2DS has a hard plastic exterior and no hinges that can break easily. The lack of support for 3D is also something that I can imagine this target audience can live with. It’s also being released at the same time as Pokémon Become A Master Pokemon Trainer With These 3 Websites Become A Master Pokemon Trainer With These 3 Websites Admit it; you still love Pokémon. I don't care if you are 12 years old, or 30 years old, Pokémon is, and always will be awesome. Maybe since you've got older you stopped watching the... Read More X and Y, so it’s pretty clear to see where Nintendo is going with this.

It’s still easy to assume that plenty of consumers outside of that age range are going to pick up the console, so it’d be great if it could appeal to them as well. I think the major point that bothers those outside of Nintendo’s target audience is the price. For $40 less, you’re essentially giving up the exact thing that you’d purchase a 3DS for, and that is support for 3D games How to Play 3D Games on Your PC on a Tight Budget How to Play 3D Games on Your PC on a Tight Budget Read More .

Functionality & Design

In the eyes of many, the Nintendo 2DS made a big mistake by taking a step back into 2005. That was the year that Nintendo last had a handheld that was non-clamshell. The 2DS doesn’t fold, and everyone is going nuts over it. It’s not hard to understand why, either. This design leaves the device open and exposed to whatever it’s being carried in. Cracking the screen or jamming the controls would seem as if it could happen so much easier.

The 2DS is a lot more balanced than the 3DS when held in your hand. This should make it feel much more comfortable, especially for their target age group. You have to hold the device closer to the middle. Another point is that internet connectivity can’t be turned off by an external switch. You have to go into the software itself and enable or disable it. This is probably to prevent young children from accidentally turning WiFi off while in a game, and it’s a smart move in my opinion.

As far as functionality goes, all that the console really has going for it is backwards-compatibility with 3DS and DS games. To be completely honest, more has been taken away from this handheld than added to it. If you’ve already got a 3DS, I honestly can’t think of a single reason why you’d want to pick this up. It’s a handheld for younger, entry-level gamers.

Conclusion

I think it’s a fine handheld, but the rest of the internet doesn’t seem to agree. The majority opinion is that the design is horrible, and it’s clunky, it’s useless compared to other consoles, it’s too expensive, and it’s a detriment to the development of Wii U Wii U Games Worth Getting Excited About [MUO Gaming] Wii U Games Worth Getting Excited About [MUO Gaming] The Wii U just hit the market, and there's a good chance that if you didn't get one, you missed the boat. Supply shortages are commonplace with the launch of a new console. That being... Read More . You’ve got to keep in mind that no one is forcing you to buy it!

MakeUseOf readers, what do you think of the Nintendo 2DS? Is it a piece of junk, or a step in the right direction to put Nintendo back into the hands of younger kids? Let me know in the comments below!

  1. Fellow Person
    March 11, 2015 at 3:48 pm

    I have this and i thoroughly enjoy it, as the 3D feature on the 3DS triggered my epilepsy and caused seizures. This console system is great and it really feels nice in my hands, though it should be considered I have quite small hands. I play many games on it and honestly, it has about the same experience as playing on a 3DS with the 3D turned off. This console is great for a broke college student such as myself and it's very unassuming so people don't steal it from my dorm.

  2. darsparx
    November 23, 2013 at 12:47 am

    Simply said, it's a step back in design to 2005. While I would probably be considered more hardcore than little kids, I remember the gba and I just can't see this design to not be flaw-ridden. Even though the psp(and now vita) still have the non-clamshell design they do it better(and I am speaking from experience of using those even though I was and still to some extent a avid nintendo fan when they do stuff right). If I ever truly get around to it I will be purchasing a 3ds over a 2ds any day....(or just stick to my vita and soon ps4/ps3). Nintendo just has lost a edge on the portables it seems since the 3ds was the last decent one they did but really didn't innovate enough with the new generations of it, or even give some of the newer systems enough power for the cost per unit.

  3. Emily E.
    November 12, 2013 at 9:21 pm

    As a fan of most Nintendo products, I was quite surprised when I first heard about the 2DS. I, like many, was skeptical about the product. I didn't really consider the product at first, but after doing some research (and deciding I wanted Pokemon X and Animal Crossing: New Leaf) I decided to buy it. I wasn't one for the 3DS when it first came out because I would get headaches when trying to demo the handheld at the store, and the lack of this 3-D feature actually makes me kind of happy. I thought playing on the system would be difficult, but it's just like a Gameboy and brings back that feeling of nostalgia. To quote a person who I showed the console to "It feels much lighter than I thought it would be." It doesn't affect the game play of 3DS games, just the visual elements and I don't really miss not having the 3-D. All in all, I really like the system. I can just toss it in my bag when going to my classes; I can even fit it in my hoodie pocket if I'm walking around the neighborhood. In summary, the 2DS is good if you don't already have a 3DS system (which I didn't before), and I would recommend it if you really want to play 3DS games without playing with the 3-D feature. I'm well above the target audience (18), and I would recommend the 2DS to my friends.

  4. TheAtom
    September 27, 2013 at 7:19 am

    It's for smaller children and for broke students that are dying to play the new pokemon, like me. It's cheaper (you basically have the 2DS with pokemon for the price of a 3DS XL, at least in Europe), plus, it comes WITH the AC adapter (what kind of ridiculous person doesn't put the charger in the package?), so that saves another $10. I'm just waiting to see how nice it will feel in my hands.

  5. EA
    September 22, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    I am all for a child version, but only forty dollars cheaper? This looks like a marketing scheme to keep the prices higher on the 3DS and higher versions. Basically, "Well we released a cheaper model so you should be happy. We have no plans to lower the price on the others". Then if a store tries to lower it or send 3DS's back to Nintendo due to lack of inventory space it gets banned from selling consoles like Amazon.

  6. Tony Madriaga
    September 19, 2013 at 6:45 am

    I actually prefer this over the 3DS. Hated the clam shell design since, owned several to know there were huge issues with the hinge when broken...this 2DS may be aimed for a younger audience but I'm a grown man and lemme say this, I'm excited for its release. I find the wedge design reminds me of the older Nintendo portable consoles such as the original Game Boy, Game Boy Pocket, Game Boy Color.. Seriously brilliant. The fact that it also has such a huge comfortable feel to it, WINNER.

  7. anon
    September 9, 2013 at 3:05 am

    what I want is the literal exact same thing as the 3ds without the 3d because it hurts my eyes and I never use it--why pay for a function you don't use? But I don't want it to be kiddied down like this, I just want a cheaper 3ds without a 3d option.

  8. Dennise Fuentes
    September 7, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    I think its a good idea specially for younger kids. My son has had two ds lites and the first thing to break was the hinges. Might get for him for Christmas.

  9. Anonymous
    September 7, 2013 at 9:08 am

    What a lot of pretentious twaddle the serious 'gamers' talk! Most kids don't spend more than 5 seconds admiring the 'the more intense 3D graphical experience'. Once they get involved in the gameplay that is what absorbs them. My ten year old still plays with a Gameboy SP and his friends crowd round the screen in just the same way. Some of the best gameplay are still on the older games and you can still pick them up for £10 or less.
    This new console looks great, easier to hold, no hinge to break. I don't know too many kids who actually put their existing DS in back pockets cos they sit on them, roll on them and break them anyway.
    This IS for kids and I suspect beyond 9 yrs too as it is reportedly much more comfortable to play with and lighter. So let kids play. AND more people can afford it and older kids can actually realistically save up for it.
    Enough already!

  10. Anonymous
    September 7, 2013 at 9:08 am

    What a lot of pretentious twaddle the serious 'gamers' talk! Most kids don't spend more than 5 seconds admiring the 'the more intense 3D graphical experience'. Once they get involved in the gameplay that is what absorbs them. My ten year old still plays with a Gameboy SP and his friends crowd round the screen in just the same way. Some of the best gameplay are still on the older games and you can still pick them up for £10 or less.
    This new console looks great, easier to hold, no hinge to break. I don't know too many kids who actually put their existing DS in back pockets cos they sit on them, roll on them and break them anyway.
    This IS for kids and I suspect beyond 9 yrs too as it is reportedly much more comfortable to play with and lighter. So let kids play. AND more people can afford it and older kids can actually realistically save up for it.
    Enough already!

  11. Yashoka
    September 5, 2013 at 11:58 pm

    While the system is targeted at the younger ages of 5-9 years old, some of us can't really afford to get something as pricey as the actual 3DS, which is what I originally wanted. Although I really wouldn't get this myself, how else would I and other people be possibly be able to afford things like this? I'm not saying that just people who also can't really buy/afford the 3DS should get this, but I think that this is just an opportunity to catch. As this is only my opinion, I may be wrong about it. I'm really not that into 3D, as I'm more used to and prefer the 2D graphics. It also supports both 3DS and DS games, so why not grab the chance? I also do agree with other people saying that the younger kids eye sight and health isn't something you want to be screwing up in the first place, so this would be great for the kids. I really don't understand why people are making such a fuss out of it, since if you have the 3DS and such, you really don't need to focus on it too much, since of course, you already have the system. There's no need to always look at the dark side.

    Again, at least it can support 2 gaming systems' games! And I was wondering if anything like that would come out as a gaming system, and it did.

  12. Errantish!!
    September 5, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    I don't understand why so many people dislike the 2Ds so far, it is designed for younger audiences and such or as a cheaper alternative to the 3Ds for people with lower incomes.

    You do have to remember though, YOU used to be one of those two audiences. - Just because Nintendo doesn't cater to your appeals anymore doesn't mean that they're any less than what they used to be.

    Times are changing and because people can't change with them they want something new and exciting like when they were younger.

    If you don't like the 2Ds don't buy it.
    But please just stop complaining about what it doesn't have and look at the positives.

  13. jordan
    September 5, 2013 at 10:52 am

    Little kids don't need expensive consoles like this anyway, most parents wouldn't spend over 100 pounds on a console until they are older

    • Errantish!!
      September 5, 2013 at 8:33 pm

      Well, people purchase 200 dollar phones for 7 year olds who will never, um, I don't know, call people?

      This would be a MUCH better investment in retrospect.

  14. Anonymous
    September 5, 2013 at 1:52 am

    Eh, whatever. Don't hate it, but I have a 3ds already, so no point in me getting it.

  15. Yami
    September 4, 2013 at 11:52 pm

    I don't like this at all. I mean, before I wound up buying my 3DS, I hated the system like heck. Now that I have it, I love it. The 3D function gives a much more advanced graphical experience, and even more, a more personal experience to the game. I, personally, have never broken a hinge, but 2 screens. I feel the hinge protectsnthe system's small and/or delicate parts, while making it easier to store. The 3DS has an option to restrict the 3D feature, so there's no need for a breakable, insufficient system, anyways. When a child gets older, he or she may be embarrassed to have friends see the awkward, childish system. By removing the highlights of the 3DS, it kills the purpose of the whole system, and ruins the intensity that many gamers enjoy in their overall experience. I think this is a horrible idea and will ruin a child's perspective of a game. Bad move, Nintendo, bad move.

  16. Yami
    September 4, 2013 at 11:52 pm

    I don't like this at all. I mean, before I wound up buying my 3DS, I hated the system like heck. Now that I have it, I love it. The 3D function gives a much more advanced graphical experience, and even more, a more personal experience to the game. I, personally, have never broken a hinge, but 2 screens. I feel the hinge protectsnthe system's small and/or delicate parts, while making it easier to store. The 3DS has an option to restrict the 3D feature, so there's no need for a breakable, insufficient system, anyways. When a child gets older, he or she may be embarrassed to have friends see the awkward, childish system. By removing the highlights of the 3DS, it kills the purpose of the whole system, and ruins the intensity that many gamers enjoy in their overall experience. I think this is a horrible idea and will ruin a child's perspective of a game. Bad move, Nintendo, bad move.

  17. Alex
    September 4, 2013 at 11:26 pm

    Buying this. Glad that this is coming out.
    Getting it for pokemon and thats it. Saves me money, and i prefer the flat look.

    • Nell
      September 7, 2013 at 9:08 pm

      This is my plan too, I never bought the 3ds because black and white 2 were still on the ds.

  18. Fenrazor
    September 4, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    Why not just buy a used 3ds if the price isn't savvy?! You can save more than 40 bucks right there!

  19. Stephen
    September 4, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    so the only difference between this and the old DS is the design and it can play newer games meant for the 3ds. Well bugger off, i'd be quite happy just using the old ds, yes I get it its for younger people but the old ds could do the same thing.

  20. James Bassett
    September 4, 2013 at 11:08 am

    My son (7) has had a DSi for nearly 2 years and loves it. What he doesn't love is that nearly every new game is 3DS only. However, he can't afford a 3DS and is too young for the 3D in any case. So this is absolutely perfect for him. Or, at least, it would be if it wasn't so darned expensive. If it was around the £60-70 it would be a no-brainer. As it is, I can only see that Nintendo will hold the price until Christmas then, when sales bomb, they will slash them in the New Year - which is when we will probably get one.

    • Joseph V
      September 4, 2013 at 12:50 pm

      I thought it was a prank at first.

  21. Djizeus
    September 4, 2013 at 10:58 am

    Just thought of adding this here...
    It is a good product for its target, would it be just because it doesn't have 3D.
    As silly as it sounds, kids under 6-7 years old aren't supposed to use the 3DS' function for it, as it can seriously damage their sight. So, having a device that can play the same games as the 3DS while removing its main danger is a good thing! :)

  22. Steven Stevem
    September 4, 2013 at 6:19 am

    i really dont understand all the hate on this. i think its a great, relativly cheap option for those who arent to fused on the whole 3d thing. really i just want it so i can play pokemon x & y

  23. teufel
    September 4, 2013 at 4:29 am

    I think there is a target audience that people here just aren't seeing, and that is the percentage of the population that cannot see 3d or cannot tolerate it due to severe migraines.

    Yeah, the base design of the system is sturdy and lack the curb appeal that the folding model has, but it has a price that won't be beaten by Sony, a library of games that curb stomps the competition being that it has access to all DS and 3DS games, and it has all the functionality of the 3DS barring just the ability to show the 3D images; heck, it can still even take 3D photos though only a 3D enabled system would be able to show the true affect of those.

    Bottom line, haters gonna hate, and Nintendo has attracted a laundry list of haters. If the Vita was doing any better, I am sure people would use it to mock the 2DS, but being that it will likely outsell the Vita by next year, people would rather mock and ridicule it.

  24. Yannis V
    September 4, 2013 at 3:27 am

    It's perfect for kids who have a tendency to break everything that is ever so slightly breakable. When the first version of the DS came out with its clamshell design way back when, I had questioned how this would appeal to a child audience pertaining to its structural integrity.

    To be fairly honest, if I had kids around the 7-10 y.o. mark I would be totally hype because I would know that the coming Xmas would be the best one yet for them. New Pokemon + shiny new handheld device? Yes, please daddy!

    Now to go to the other end of the spectrum: the hate. This is not something meant for the following groups: a) adults, b) current owners of a 3DS device and c) people who don't like all things Nintendo. I am in both a and b category and I'm absolutely satisfied with my 3DS XL. I've gotten a lot of mileage out of it so far. Although this announcement does not affect me, I do wish they had something else planned for those that are like me - Metroid for 3DS pretty please?! Granted we got Pokemon, Smash Bros and other great games to look forward to but one more little announcement squeezed in with the 2DS would have been cake.

    Bottomline is that the hate is unwarranted. Honestly, I'm not a fan of the design but children are not that hung up on the aesthetics. They just want a device that will play the latest gaming fad that everyone in the schoolyard is playing.

  25. Victor Ong
    September 3, 2013 at 8:26 pm

    The only issue I have is the fact that it doesn't fold up. The increased vulnerability combined with a 5-9 year old target audience is a perfect recipe for disaster.. but potential profit on Nintendo's end.

  26. Matt S
    September 3, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    Sometimes I hate gamers. They pitch a fit the moment a gaming product doesn't suck the hardcore audience's big toe.

  27. Justin P
    September 3, 2013 at 5:12 pm

    It's a low-cost, kid friendly version timed perfectly to align with the upcoming Pokemon game. I don't see why people think that's stupid.

  28. Jorge
    September 3, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    The 2DS is really a re vamp of the DS. No innovation ????

    But it might work bit does Not does Not ad a future, considering, iPhone gaming as alternative.

  29. Mark M
    September 3, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    It's near perfect for my little one, plus the price tag is attractive seeing as how she may tire if it in about 3 - 4 months anyhow...in my opinion it's a good move for the target audience.

  30. Mak
    September 3, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    This is such a funny topic! The people that are trolling the system are NOT TARGET AUDIENCE but still manage to 'beat that shoe around'
    This issue is just tile PS fanboys hating on Xbox! Guys come on you know that YOU won't buy it and it isn't created for you but for others (in 2ds case for kids) so don't stop to spill your hate and just move on. The most important part of gaming is to like and play that you love, and not to hate things that are loved by the others. #peace

  31. ImDrFreak
    September 3, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    For all of the naysayers, it just comes down to four words "It's not for you." Like you say, it's for children. The MOST breakable part of the DS traditionally isn't the screen, it's the hinge. This is a unit with a stronger body and lack of 3D for... the 5 to 9 year olds. That's it.

    • Zhong J
      September 3, 2013 at 11:42 pm

      While that may be true, it's still confusing on why Nintendo became focus on catering their attention to children or maybe their primary customers for pokemon, mario..etc, is very children friendly? It'll rule out other potential older gamers who find the lack of portability and feature deficient; there's not much for many people to buy it despite it's intentionally for children.

    • Craig S
      September 8, 2013 at 11:11 pm

      I'd have to agree. I think it's rather refreshing and a good sign of the Nintendo brand to show that they still care about a younger demographic. On the other side, I think people feel "cheated" by Nintendo pushing this handheld console out, rather than focusing on strengthening the Wii U and their other other responsibilities. We'll see, though.

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