The glasses come off: 3DS launches in the US

Saturday, 26th March 2011 23:44 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

Nintendo 3DS has launched in America, with a Best Buy in New York being the focal point of the machine’s release following a European ship earlier in the week.

3DS at a glance

Plays most DS and DSi games.

SD Memory slot and 2GB SD card can store and transfer data.

StreetPass talks with other 3DS devices nearby.

SpotPass connects to Wi-Fi hotspots or wireless internet.

Take 3D pictures with the built-in 3D camera.

Allows you to superimpose images with six Augmented-Reality (AR) cards.

eShop includes downloadable games and software (coming post launch).

Launched in the UK earlier this week, 1,200 stores in UK and Ireland opened at midnight so that customers could get their 3DS as early as possible.

Over in the US, retailers also flocked to the launch en masse.

Footage of the New York launch, including
the queue.

Union Square, New York City

The Best Buy located at Union Square, the headquarters for the North American launch event, saw folks waiting in line since Monday, with the launch event itself starting at 9.00pm EST last night.

The official Nintendo of America Twitter account and Joystiq have published photos of the opening.

The $250 handheld is the first three-dimensional device of its kind to not require those pesky, plastic glasses, and people were able to try it for themselves through demo kiosks at the launch store.

Isaiah-Triforce Johnson – gotta love that name – was the first customer in line at the Best Buy location, having been there since Monday. The professional gamer from Brooklyn told the New York Post: “Nintendo always makes great innovative systems and games. I want to be able to experience that innovation that Nintendo makes.”

Other Best Buy stores around the country opened at midnight to sell the device. Here’s a list.

GameStop getting in on the action

GameStops across the US also opened early so Nintendo fans can get their hands on 3DS as soon as possible.

The retailer hosted events at more than 3,000 of its US stores with midnight launches and product demos.

More than 800 stores nationwide opened doors at 12.01am, and 2,400 other stores opened an hour early to sell the handheld.

3DS package contents

3DS pre-loaded with built-in games, applications and features.

SD memory slot with 2GB SD card.

Built-in camera for taking 3D pictures.

Telescoping stylus stored in the unit itself.

Six Augmented Reality (AR) Cards

Customers who trade in used Nintendo DS Lite, DSi or DSi XL systems will receive a $50-100 credit toward the purchase of 3DS system. See stores for more details. You can also click here to find stores near you.

Accessories surface

Lots of different accessories are already available for 3DS, with Power A and PDP recently revealing some Nintendo-licensed cases, chargers and cleaning kits.

Don’t forget your Rainbow Telescoping Stylus Pack. Joystiq wants one, and so do we.

But what about the games?

The library of games launching alongside 3DS is impressive, and if any of the offerings on hand don’t excite you overly much, there’s plenty more heading to retail.

New York launch footage, shot by GoNintendo.

If you’d like to find out which titles are worth the $39.99, you can check out what UK and Europe thinks of the offerings through our reviews round-up here.

Reviews for 3DS hardware are included in that link as well. Despite a few complaints, it seems to be getting decent reviews. So are the games. So far the Metacritic rating for SSFIV 3D is 84, PilotWings Resort is 71, and Ridge Racer 3D is 78.

In the US, folks can choose from the following:

  • Asphalt 3D
  • Bust-a-Move Universe
  • Combat of Giants Dinosaurs
  • LEGO Star Wars III The Clone Wars 3D
  • Madden NFL Football 3DS
  • Nintendogs + Cats: French Bulldog and New Friends
  • Nintendogs + Cats: Golden Retriever and New Friends
  • Nintendogs + Cats: Toy Poodle and New Friends
  • Pilotwings Resort
  • Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 3D
  • Rayman 3D
  • Ridge Racer 3D
  • Samurai Warriors Chronicles
  • Steel Diver
  • Super Monkey Ball 3D
  • Super Street Fighter IV: 3D Edition
  • The Sims 3
  • Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Shadow Wars

Other games expected between May and September include:

  • Balloon Pop 2
  • Captain America: Super Soldier
  • Cartoon Network: Punch Time Explosion
  • Dead or Alive Dimensions
  • Dream Trigger 3D for Nintendo 3DS
  • Dual Pen Sports
  • Face Kart: Photo Finish
  • James Noir’s Hollywood Crimes
  • LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Pac-Man & Galaga Dimensions
  • Pet Zombies in 3D – 3DS for Nintendo 3DS
  • Pinball Hall Of Fame Williams Collection
  • Resident Evil: Mercenaries
  • Skylanders Spyro’s Adventure Pack for Nintendo 3DS
  • SpongeBob Squigglepants
  • Thor: God of Thunder
  • Transformers Movie 2011



  1. Erthazus

    “The library of games launching for 3DS tomorrow is rather impressive”

    it’s really not to be honest.

    Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Shadow Wars is the only ok title from that list and maybe SFIV

    Games that are expected between may and september are not that special either except for maybe Resident Evil: Mercenaries and Shin Megami Tensei. There is no killer app or something that can be worth of purchasing for 39.99$

    You can purchase the similar quality at the iO devices for much cheaper and some of them are much better then this.

    #1 4 years ago
  2. Stephany Nunneley

    @1 Impressive in amount. 16 games (18 if you include the different dog/cat games) is not bad in reality. It’s a lot better than 3 or 4.

    #2 4 years ago
  3. Tomo

    Those are the games expected by September?! Jesus, what a pile of shit :(

    #3 4 years ago
  4. Stephany Nunneley

    @3 Surely there will be more. That’s just the tentative list at the moment of known games. Notice Ocarina of Time isn’t listed on there, and by gosh it better be out soon or I am not getting a 3DS! Same goes for the next Layton – which will probably be 10 more years down the road. (cries)

    #4 4 years ago
  5. frostquake

    I love the AR cards, and would like to see developers really, REALLY use them, and they not just be a one trick pony. I don’t know if anyone remembers, but the GameCube game, Animal Crossing had cards that you scanned via your GB hooked to the GameCube..problem, was that no one carried the cards, and by the time they were out the game was dead in the water.

    The 3DS AR cards, could really help ALL games on the 3DS, not only by giving you weapons, armor, pets, potions, spells and such, but could add new characters to games, new levels.

    They should pack an AR card in EVERY 3DS game, to get the public excited. Imagine all the Pokeman AR cards that would sell!! Zelda AR cards, Resident Evil AR cards.

    I really REALLY hope they make that an integral part of the games, and not just Nintendo doing it, but no one else.

    I loved my PS3 Eye of Judgment game with all the cards that the camera scanned, too bad they didn’t sell the cards everywhere, and then they wonder why it doesn’t take off.

    You can’t release a game, and then 9 months later release the AR cards that would have been help or fun at the beginning of the game release. Most people have already traded in their game by that time!!

    Still, I do love the AR portion.

    #5 4 years ago
  6. jeremycafe

    I was pretty excited for the 3DS until I got my hands on it in Best Buy. I can’t believe the exact position you need to maintain just for the 3D to work. I remember watching a comercial where they show them moving it around to see around the environment. What a bunch of crap. You move an inch and the entire screen is whacked.

    #6 4 years ago
  7. UuBuU

    @6 What were you expecting? There were a couple of videos posted quite a while before release (non-commercial) explaining how the technology works. It’s really nothing more than a gimmick.

    It wouldn’t be so bad if the games themselves were better, but the reviews thus far speak for themselves – mediocrity – and very few of the upcoming titles inspire me either.

    As said in previous 3DS articles, there’s just a ridiculous amount of hype surrounding this because it’s a new concept that’s been advertised well. In reality it’s quite disappointing, and people will realise this once the hype is dead.

    #7 4 years ago
  8. Erthazus

    “this because it’s a new concept that’s been advertised well”

    and DS, Nintendo Popularity.

    #8 4 years ago
  9. Lounds

    I love the picture of the American CEO

    #9 4 years ago
  10. ReeceHeywood

    So anyone managed to get the 3D to actually work? Every time I activate it all I see is 2 images over lapping each other.

    I’ve calibrated, moved it around, done all things.


    #10 4 years ago
  11. Christopher Jack

    Anyone know how would the 3DS would fare on a bumpy train or bus ride? would it sales hook *cough*gimmick*cough* be pointless the entire trip?
    I know the 3DS is more powerful than the original PSP, but does anybody expect many higher quality games? I suspect that 90% of them will be incredibly casual/kiddy games & spin-offs from major the games, the other 10% will be Nintendo’s own franchises & a couple of decent 3rd party games.
    Well that’s my view on the 3DS, if I’m going to play some games on the go, I’d want relatively high quality games, like a GTA spinoff (Not like chinatown wars).

    #11 4 years ago
  12. papershadow

    I can’t believe some of these posts. If you don’t care about the 3ds, why come to a 3ds article to bitch and complain? Explain that to me.

    #12 4 years ago
  13. spiderLAW

    sharing experiences really and asking questions in the form of a complaint….duh dude
    dont come in here acting like you are above anything anybody comments in here. We have enough arrogant “above the rest” asses on this site and there is no need for another one.

    @All of you that bought it.
    is the 3D feature that bad?

    #13 4 years ago
  14. Erthazus

    @13, i saw it today at the local electronics store.

    It’s not bad, it’s just to see 3D you need to be just in front of the console. Sometimes you need to search for the right spot with the 3D image adjusting it with the 3D slider. Also, depends with the game.
    I played Pilotwings Resort and SF4.
    Overall, it’s a bit gimmicky for me. If i will buy 3DS i will play games without 3D (or with 3D for 20 minutes at home only)

    #14 4 years ago
  15. Phoenixblight

    I also played it at a local game store and I didn’t enjoy it especially with how Nintendo said if you move the screen the area will change to look like you are looking inside a room but it doesn’t do this. It looks weird when you do this. I am not sure if its just the games or if its the actual hardware. I will go with its just that developers are not yet experienced with it yet. Just going to wait to see what 3rd party developers will come up for it but right now the system is on the far back burner and is just a gimmick that is being overhyped.

    #15 4 years ago
  16. papershadow

    @12 what part of my post made me sound like I was above everybody else? I’m expressing my opinion, that people like to complain about things they were clearly not interested in to begin with. It has nothing to do with being an “above the rest ass”

    #16 4 years ago
  17. Christopher Jack

    My main complain isn’t necessarily about the hardware, but the type of support it will receive.

    I don’t play kiddy games (Pokemon being the exception), I leave the casual games to my phone, I don’t care about Nintendo’s own franchises (Pokemon yet again being the exception-although I did enjoy Super Smash Bros on the N64) & finally the hardcore games, well the one in a million hardcore games, they will mainly be spin offs or cut down versions.

    The thing I enjoyed about some of the PSP games is that they were essentially the same as the console version (With obviously lower grade graphics) but developers were actually able to often give us a little more content than the home console version, something I can’t imagine many developers doing for the 3DS.

    IMO, all Sony needs to do in my eyes to make the PSP2 a success is to make home console games more accessible with the NGP with instantaneous saving/loading, no more running to a hideout to save the damn game.

    #17 4 years ago
  18. spiderLAW

    Please. Your post was full of arrogance.
    Who are you to say they have no interest? Can you read minds?

    Thanks Erth, i think based on what you are all saying, i will wait for a price drop to get it for my daughter.

    I actually liked the support the DS got. I had both the PSP and DS and had equal amounts of fun with both. Im actualy thinking that the 3DS line up will be a good one eventually. I just am not sure about the 3D effect and according to several, its very hit and miss.

    #18 4 years ago
  19. hitnrun

    The lineup thing is a matter of perspective. It is true say both that the early release lineup is a) fairly boring and lackluster and b) an strong showing. That’s because uninteresting launch titles are now the standard for the industry. I think the last system to have a great launch was…the Dreamcast? Which, statistically speaking, nobody even owned.

    @the 3d picture: It’s a gimmick that sucks when you tried to use it as advertised, but whatever. Turn it down to 1/4, and you get a nice little bump without hurting your eyes.

    @17: That’s actually why I didn’t like the PSP. Whenever I borrowed a PSP to play games on it, I was bothered by the sense that I should be playing the game in front of my HDTV. It felt like a solution looking for a problem, particularly for cinematic games and RPGS. I guess to each his own.

    #19 4 years ago
  20. Erthazus IGN Review

    #20 4 years ago
  21. DrDamn

    @5 Frostquake
    The AR cards are the best and most innovative part of what I’ve seen. Really nicely done. Not sure what you want by all games supporting it. I don’t want it to be just another way to get you to pay for extra content, plus some games will suit it and others not so much. Actually it would be a poor way to do DLC as they would be easily copiable :)

    Not bought one yet, but would be interested to hear how well stocks are holding up in the US. In the UK they have been plentiful, or the unit simply hasn’t sold as well as expected. Certainly a lot of stock still about even with reasonable discounting. I’m tempted by Pilot Wings and maybe Ghost Recon, will wait a little first maybe.

    #21 4 years ago

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