Looks like parents are going to be reading some fine, fine print on their new 3DS boxes. Reggie Fils-Aime, talking to gaming blog Kotaku, made a point of noting that the 3DS was not meant for children under seven years old. While, to other game companies, this demographic may not matter so much, many of Nintendo’s customers are children under seven years old. While that might sound silly at first, think about how old you were when you got your first Game Boy – probably around six to ten years old.
Apparently this warning is an industry standard caveat for 3D image viewing. Reggie himself said that the same warning was on the Virtual Boy (arguably Nintendo’s biggest flop console), and that similar warnings exist for 3D movies as well.
The reason for the recommended cutoff age is due to the way the human body develops – in children seven and under, their eye muscles are not yet fully formed. Prolonged use of the 3DS, or any 3D image technology, could potentially hurt their vision in the long run. Other than that, Nintendo has noted that the 3DS poses no health risks.
In addition to discussing the health track record of the 3DS, Reggie Fils-Aime also re-affirmed that the console would be out in the US before March 2011, as well as advised that the hardware shown during Nintendo’s E3 events is not the final 3DS design. We’re starting our 3DS piggy banks now, though, because Nintendo has yet to announce any sort of 3DS pricing – and it doesn’t look like they’re going to until there’s some final hardware in place.