Nintendo has announced it has a new handheld console on the way. And it’s set to arrive on July 28th. On a positive note, it may be the best iteration of the Nintendo 3DS we have yet seen. On a negative note, it’s just another iteration of the Nintendo 3DS rather than a brand new console.
The Nintendo Switch, which is part home console, part handheld console, is selling extremely well. This has led some to question whether Nintendo will continue supporting its dedicated handheld line or go all-in on the Switch. The announcement of the 2DS XL probably answers that question.
The 3DS XL Without 3D
The Nintendo 2DS XL is essentially the 3DS XL without the 3D functionality. So, you get the same large screens top and bottom, the C-stick and ZL/ZR buttons, and the clamshell design that lets you fold the console in on itself. This alone makes it a vast improvement over the standard 2DS.
Reggie Fils-Aime, the President of Nintendo of America, said, “This new addition to Nintendo’s portable hardware line demonstrates our commitment to the handheld market. The new Nintendo 2DS XL sports a beautiful clamshell design and offers a great balance between price and performance.”
To coincide with the release of the 2DS XL, Nintendo is also releasing Hey Pikmin!, a side-scrolling action game starring those lovable Pikmin, and Miitopia, a Mii-based strategic RPG. Even if these don’t appeal, the 2DS XL has a back catalog of more than 1,000 games thanks to its ability to play DS, 3DS, and 3DS XL titles.
The 2DS XL will launch first in Japan, arriving on July 13th and costing 14,980 yen. It will then arrive in the U.S. on July 28th, where it will cost $149.99. This is $50 cheaper than the 3DS XL, but $70 more expensive than the standard 2DS with its ridiculous wedge-shaped design.
The Perfect Handheld Console?
The 2DS XL is a surprise, but a welcome one. By removing the 3D functionality, while adding bigger screens protected by the clamshell design, Nintendo may have built the perfect handheld console for this generation. And it’s available at an extremely attractive price point to boot.
Do you own a Nintendo handheld? If so, which one? If you own a 3DS do you actually ever use the 3D functionality? Are you interested in the 2DS XL? Can you see it being the perfect compromise between form factor and price? Please let us know in the comments below!