As you can see in the picture Nintendo are set to release an add on for the 3DS, no it’s not a photoshop, it is real. It’s not a guitar peripheral or rumble but a second analogue stick. With the console being out barely 6 months it’s ridiculous that such a company would release an add on controller to their new flagship handheld. If Nintendo really thinks that two sticks should be the new control method for the 3DS then they have really messed up, not only for existing owners with an ugly, bulky looking add on, but for new owners confused by yet another system change. At least with other DS and Gameboy revisions the previous consoles were identical in function.
There is one glimer of hope, it may just be an add on for the new Monster Hunter 3DS game, but will other games also want to take advantage of it? Probably.
Like many other companies before them, and even themselves they have become blind with success and money. Nintendo had control of the gaming world with the NES and to a lesser extent the SNES but lost it all with the launch of the N64. Sony suffered the same fate after the PS2. Now after the huge success of the DS and Wii Nintendo has lost their way and done things even a casual gamer can see are bad ideas.
1. It lacks dual sticks. This addon proves they should have added a second stick to the launch console. Sure we had a touch screen and the original DS didn’t suffer but with more 3D games coming out a second stick is vital for many games today.
2. It was too expensive. The recent price cut shows Nintendo priced it way too high. With the world recession and what looks like a simple update to a normal DS, why would the public pay over $200 for one? The simple answer is they didn’t and thats why Nintendo had to drop the price so quickly after launch.
3. The internet. With the exception of Street Fighter and not even a handful of other games the online side of things have been horribly neglected. Where are the friends lists and invite systems? Where was the eShop at launch? What about demos or even the simple matter of having an account? As it stands all downloads are tied to your system, if it breaks or you lose it you are tough out of luck. Even having to add money in set increments whilst paying more than $2 for a 20 year old black and white gameboy game just winds us up and that’s forgetting the Mario tax on some of these games.
4. Region Locking. Every handheld before the 3DS that Nintendo had made was region free (we’ll ignore the few DSi exclusive games). Great for picking up games on holiday where they may be cheaper or not available in your country or at the airport. But now if you want a new game whilst away you’ll have to wait till you are back home.
5. The 3D. We love the 3D but do the public? Some people can’t see it. Some people don’t like it or it gives them headaches. Even Nintendo warns about how harmful it can be. Sadly for Nintendo 3D has become a fad with box office ratings showing 3D takings are down year on year. As much as we love it, we can see why Nintendos marketing puts off people who don’t like 3D to begin with and think all the system can do is 3D.
But the biggest problem of all is all this was perfectly foreseeable by even the average gamer. Adding in a second stick would have cost pennys and there’s even a nice space for it under the buttons. Nintendo certainly rushed out the launch of the console, if only they had held it back, with everything in place it could have been better than it currently is.
We won’t write off the 3DS just yet but like Sega with it’s Saturn they haven’t given it the perfect start that it required and now face a huge uphill struggle to stay on top. Huge success has gone to Nintendos head once again and like other companies before them they have based their decisions on arrogance. Only losing market share will make the company more willing to experiment just like with the Wii and become successful again. No doubt if this does happen, the cycle will repeat as Nintendo have shown before and Sony are now showing.