Good thing they added that stuff, huh? Otherwise, the name would’ve been pretty misleading.
“I became involved with development starting in 2008, but at that time, it didn’t have 3D visuals,” 3DS group manager Hideki Konno told Famitsu (via 1UP). “From Nintendo’s perspective, they’ve released 3D Hot Rally [a Japan-only 8-bit game that used 3D shutter glasses] and the Virtual Boy; they’ve had a history of experimenting with 3D visuals. With this system, you could say the timing was just right for us. It was the right time to start thinking about using the latest in high-tech and try out glasses-free 3D.”
So then, what did the 3DS have going for it? Was it set to be a bite-sized Wii for on-the-go waggling? Nope. In fact, that came even later.
“[The motion sensors] were actually put in pretty late,” said Konno. “We officially went with them just before E3 last year [in June]. The boat had really left the port by that point – the hardware team had the final specs and just had to work it all out. Then, in the midst of that, Miyamoto said ‘This isn’t enough; we can really change things if there’s a gyro sensor in there.’ We had a prototype for the sensor already, so we got everyone together to try it out, and the conclusion we came up with was ‘Well, if we can do things this fun with it, I guess we’ve got no choice.’”
So basically, Nintendo’s latest little console that could was – at one point – less of a 3DS and more of a Me-Too-DS. Can you feel that? It’s as though millions of shareholders cried out and were suddenly silenced.