Nintendo announced the 2DS this week, a new entry-level handheld system.
The 2DS will be available in the UK for £109.99 on October 12th (the same day as Pokemon X and Y is released) and features a slate-like design rather than the clamshell seen previously on DS and 3DS models. The 2DS will also be available in North America (estimated $129.99) and Australia/NZ (AUD$149.95/NZD$179.95) on October 12th also.
The 2DS is fully compatible with all 3DS and DS games but, as the name may indicate, does not include the ability to display games in 3D. It still, features all the functionality of 3DS (WiFi, local multiplayer, etc.) and can be put to sleep using a slider that replicates closing the clamshell on a standard 3DS, both very nice features that prove Nintendo are thinking about their audience. WiFi can still be turned off, though it’s done via controls in the software rather than with a physical switch.
“Imagine a standard 3DS laid all the way flat, and with the depth slider all the way down,” Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime explained to IGN. “Everything else is there in the system.”
The 2DS will launch in red and blue models at first and will be sold alongside the standard 3DS and 3DS XL. It will include a 4GB SD card and uses the same power source as 3DS and DSi. It also includes two cameras on the back side, so AR games still function and players can still take 3D photos — they simply can’t be displayed on the 2DS, but are still viewable in full 3D if transferred to 3DS. The 2DS only includes one speaker, which plays mono sound, but features full stereo via its headphone jack.
According to Fils-Aime, the idea for the 2DS came from wanting to appeal to younger consumers, as the standard 3DS is aimed at players age seven and up.
“Imagine a standard 3DS laid all the way flat, and with the depth slider all the way down. Everything else is there in the system.
“We’re always thinking about what we can do that’s new, unique, different, and brings more people into this category that we love,” Fils-Aime said. “And so with the Nintendo 3DS, we were clear to parents that, ‘hey, we recommend that your children be seven and older to utilize this device.’ So clearly that creates an opportunity for five-year-olds, six-year-olds, that first-time handheld gaming consumer.”
“We’ve always been thinking about, ‘how do we approach that as one target?'” he continued. “And that certainly helped spur the idea of the Nintendo 2DS. Let’s have the consumer have access to all of these great games – Mario Kart 7, Animal Crossing – but do it in a 2D capability with a device that has a dramatically lower price point. That’s just an example of how we’re always thinking about, ‘how do we get more people playing games? How do we get more people playing Nintendo games?'”
This seems like the perfect cheaper alternative to the 3DS, which should do relatively well on release date in mid October.