Without further sidetracks, here we go:
No system is perfect and you end up ruining it for yourself if you try to approach it in that manner. For me the 3DS is a great system that has significant potential and I have no regrets. I'm planning to purchase Super Mario 3D Land, Mario Kart 7, Luigi's Mansion 2 and maybe Cave Story 3D which should be some great gaming.
Frankly I was pessimistic on 3D in general and wasn't concerned if I used it or not. My two hands-on demos at Best Buy and Gamestop didn't blow me away and the first left me slightly nauseated with a bad headache. It took about three days, but my eyes finally adjusted to 3D and I have to admit that it looks really good. The sweet spot is probably small, though the biggest thing is that you stay relatively still.
I also have to admit that the 3D videos, primarily the upcoming game trailers, really did blow me away. I had seen all the game trailers on a computer and was basically convinced on several titles. Seeing them in 3D was completely different and really sealed the deal.
While I really like the 3D videos, I do feel that the various video options are too disconnected/disjointed and need some work. Between streaming video in the eShop, downloadable trailers and videos then the dedicated video channel it's just too spread out. Essentially I think keeping the streaming "preview" videos in the eShop is fine as you want to check out a sample before purchasing. Though I think it would be helpful if all of those downloaded videos could be consolidated in the video channel and not take up channel slots. On the other hand it is nice to go directly to the video you want on the main screen...
Well, it's certainly interesting to see different kinds of content and have them available offline, but I don't like a few items.
1) Videos are removed automatically. What if I want to save it to watch again in a few weeks? Am I missing an option to save?
2) Some videos are sort of cool, but many aren't and you can't control what kind of content is downloaded.
3) Some are advertisements for videos in eShop that cost money. I really don't understand the Dreamworks videos for purchase. Sure they seem neat, but there's no indication of how long they are before I put down my $2.99. Is it an hour long video or just a 5 or 10 minute expansion of the preview?
I wish I had something to say, but so far my attempts haven't yielded any results. I took it with me to a busy park, grocery stores filled with British tourists and on the big road trip with the hope I would pass another 3DS user in an adjacent car. At this point I'm not concerned, though I hear SM 3D Land supports streetpass which would be cool to be a part of.
I've heard mixed things about the eShop and may have went in with a little negativity. All things considered I think it works rather well and is a notable improvement from the Wii Shop channel. It seems faster and isn't quite as clunky as the Wii. So what's left to complain about?
1) Odd categories filling up the screen. I know, they're just game groupings for advertising.
2) Feels like it takes too much effort to filter/search. There is the quick and advanced filter/search, so this could just be me. Will try it out more.
3) No background downloads.
4) Game Selection: Yes, it's filled with lots of DSiWare, but where's all that VC? Where's the TG16 games and why are they mainly releasing GameBoy games? What about NES and SNES games? I also like the idea of 3D remakes, but I think they need to be careful on what they select. ExciteBike and Xevious are one thing, but Urban Champion?
Unrelated, is it just me who thinks "Catcrap" each time I see "Catrap"?
Some say that the AR games should have been the main killer app feature and not 3D. I'm not sure I would go that far, but the AR games are pretty cool and entertaining. I've gone through some of them and really the only thing I don't like is when you need to move the 3DS to see around some object and I don't want to get out of my chair. :)
Oh, battery life..... Yes, the battery gets sucked dry with 3-4 hours of gaming with 3D on, brightness on max, no power savings, wifi and no ear buds for sound. I'm not going to rant about it and I've read some articles talking about how 3D requires more brightness/power to work properly. If that is true, then there's no point in getting bent out of shape. Though you can clearly see there are numerous solutions to save battery and wifi is a huge one.
I'm not concerned about battery as I generally play in the house and I'll come up with a car charging solution if necessary.
I'm looking forward to the online multiplayer in titles like Mario Kart 7, though in general online interaction is still basically lacking. There's hardly room for your status message and you can't really do anything after adding a friend. Now it's not that I want to have an IM chat, but I'd love to be able to see all the stats of friends, see what they're up to and really have that kind of "community" feel.
- As widely reported the stylus is in a dumb position. Perhaps they didn't have a choice, but it's not natural to pull it from back there.
- I like the clean homescreen and how it's an improvement from the Wii.
- Game selection is getting better and I'm hoping that will encourage more 3rd parties to jump into the mix.
- VVVVVV is coming to the eShop before the end of the year. This is so cool and a no brainer.
- I'd like a little more solid feel and resistance to the 3D and volume sliders.
- (edit) I like the charging cradle. It's a nice feature to just drop the unit into without thinking about wires.
I've mainly been playing Ocarina of Time 3D and it's been great fun. I do have some gripes about the camera angle/control, but that's a minor issue which I'll save for another post.
As I said in the beginning I have no regrets and it's overall a very fun system. Here's to hoping Nintendo doesn't get too distracted with the Wii U and really keeps the ball rolling!