That’s right, folks! The Nintendo 3DS has been released today and is on shelves in stores throughout the western hemisphere! Unfortunately, the 3DS is not yet available in this fine color that is shown above, but we certainly hope it will be in the near future! Hit the jump to view the features that the 3DS has to offer!


Before we begin with the features, the 3DS is (currently) available in these two colors:

 

Aqua blue and comso black.

 

And now, the features that make the 3DS what it is:

Activity Log

Like with the Nintendo Wii, the 3DS tracks your gameplay; it records what games you have played as well as how long you have played. There is also a step counting feature. If you take your 3DS with you when you walk from class to class or of you are just getting some exercise, the 3DS will count every step you take along the way. With every step you take, you accumulate Play Coins, which are used with certain games to acquire special goodies and some other beneficials that will aid you in those games.

Augmented Reality

This interesting little feature is brand new to the Nintendo gaming industry. There are some augmented games that come with the 3DS with six cards that, when you point the 3DS’s camera to them, a 3D motion image appears on top of the card!

Backward Compatibility

Yes,  you saw it right! The 3DS will not only play your 3DS games but will also play your DS games as well! This includes DSi software. And unfortunately, just like the DSi, the Nintendo 3DS cannot play Game Boy Advance games. Talk about a major bummer! Now as you all know there are some big differences between the DS game cards and the 3DS game cards. The 3DS cards have a small tab that sticks out from one corner of the came card to prevent putting them in any Nintendo DS system. If you so choose play your DS software on your 3DS (which we’re sure everybody will do), the game image will be stretched to fit the screen making it look a little distorted due to differences in screen size of the two systems. You can, however, make the image normal size if you hold the “start” and “select” buttons before launching the DS software.

3DS Messaging Service

Similar to the Wii Message Board, the 3DS sports a messaging system as well. This service allows 3DS users to send messages to and from one another using the Nintendo Wi-Fi connection. Your 3DS will notify you when you have a new message by changing LED light colors. This service replaces the Nintendo DS’s Picto Chat, but when did you ever use that feature anyway?

Virtual Console

After five years (about), the virtual console has finally gone portable! The 3DS’s virtual console will have the classic Game Boy and Game Boy Color games available for you to download onto your 3DS. Games for the TurboGrafx 16 and Game Gear will be on there as well. And instead of the “point system” that is used with the Wii and DSi, The 3DS VC will run on a “cash-based” system.

StreetPass and SpotPass Mode

In the nifty feature known as StreetPass, you can swap data with others that are carrying their 3DS along with them. If you pass another person with your 3DS on in “Sleep Mode”, you can swap data such as Mii characters and high scores with others with their 3DS in “Sleep Mode”. Of course, you can change your settings to allow which data to be transferred and which to be hidden. And with SpotPass, you can exchange data with your 3DS in Sleep Mode. However, this method of data exchange happens when the Sleep Mode 3DS passes by a wireless hotspot or wireless LAN access point. This application may not be available for use until after the software update in late May.

Video Content

The 3DS boasts 3D movie and video playback capabilities. Nintendo, Warner Bros, Disney, and DreamWorks have put their heads together to come out with some 3D movies. Although titles have not yet been announced, DreamWorks’ How to Train Your Dragon, Warner Bros’ Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole, and Disney’s Tangled, were previewed at last year’s E3. Durung the 2011 Game Developers’ Conference, Reggie Fils-Aime revealed that the 3DS will support Netflix instant streaming. So if you have a Netflix account and don’t have a laptop, you can now watch your movies on the go with your 3DS!

Mii Maker

Like the virtual console, the Miis are going portable as well!  The 3DS sports a Mii Maker as well as the ability to import your Miis from your Nintendo Wii. Unfortunately you can’t import Miis to your Wii due to additional content on the 3DS. You can also create a Mii from a photo taken by one of the cameras on the 3DS. Miis can also be loaded by capturing special QR codes with one of the cameras. There is also a Street Pass Mii Plaza to house all the Miis that you gather while in StreetPass Mode.

Nintendo 3DS Sound

This application lets you listen to your favorite music saved on an SD Card in MP3 or AAC format. You can even record and play with sounds via the Nintendo 3DS microphone with a variety of fun filters. This looks to be an expanded version found on the DSi.

Face Raiders


Using the camera, you can take a photo of yourself, a friend or family member, which is then placed right onto a range of shooting targets. To play, you’ll need to move with your Nintendo 3DS system, physically leaning and turning to search all around and aim high and low, taking out your targets.

There ya have it!

The 3DS has so much to offer us in such a small gaming machine. Be sure to get one soon and not miss out on the excitement and thrill that a lot of us are experiencing at this moment!  And let us know what you think in the comments below!

  • jau682

    i got the black one today! so awesome! :DDDDDD cant wait for zelda… literally. DX

  • mrnjlw1090

    I can't wait to get one, but I won't be able to until I can save up the cash.

    • wiiman445

      theres no rush i am saving up to i dnt particularly like the launch games

      • wiiman445

        not to mention the firmware update

    • dark_link121

      amen to that

    • fsshhhswing

      Atleast, maybe by the time you could get one, there would be a cool new colour released!

  • Zero

    I really wish the red one was released with the blue and black; I would've totally gotten it today. I'll just have to wait till they hopefully say something about it at E3 I guess.

  • Excuse me while I go cry in a corner because I don't have the money to buy one right now…

    • Mrcandyman2000

      I know how you feel 🙁

  • Cam

    Same here 🙂 I don't see a point in getting it until a game I want to play comes out! XD

  • Kairai

    I'm getting one on Wednesday. o: So excited!

  • jwalraven

    Yes Netflix! I'm still gonna wait on mine in case there is a special Zelda 3DS in June. Also, the first firmware update is at the end of May.

  • zeldafan4040

    OMG you people are ill prepared! You knew this day was coming! I have 3 of them! 2 to sell on ebay and one aqua blue one for me. I am playing it now and it is so awesome! When you first turn it on, there is a little tutorial and it tells you to slide the 3d slider and when you do, it goes, " Preparing to launch 3d…3 2 1..and then the screen goes from 2d to 3d right in front of your eyes and it is EPIC!!!!!!!!!!

    • geekiestguyaround

      -.- You should have written "SPOILER ALERT" before that.

      • zeldafan4040

        LOL that was not a spoiler…__

        • geekiestguyaround

          Yes, it was. I wanted to know about little details like that when I had the 3DS in my own hands.

  • D..

    Just a little longer for us down under. NZ release is the End of March… (Got a black one pre-ordered)

  • You're not realising this has more power than a Wii in most areas… It isn't a DS remake – it's a whole new console and cost 3 times more than making the DSi…

  • michael12268

    "to downloag "

    you spelled download wrong!

    • Adam

      Thanks for pointing that out! Typo fixed!

  • I will wait for the next version of this 3DS, just like the DS and DS lite, the 3DS in less than a year will have a better version and I will be laughing about you guys lol

    • kidgoku13

      nah, we'll be the ones laughing, because ours will have a system update to make it just as good as a "new version" that will most likely come out in 3-5 years(yeah, it took 2 or 3 years for the DSLite, btw.). Besides; we already HAVE ours.

      • cloverplayer

        i'm guessing a 3ds xl, that would be cool

  • kidgoku13

    I got the blue one~! <3 it broke me though. XD I"m saving up for OoT3D!! 8'D

  • jwalraven

    I caved in and got one today anyway. I'm proud to say my 10 month old son was more interested in my 3DS than he was a cracker. (In reference to the baby unboxing a 3DS news post).

    • cloverplayer

      crackers are fail to cheese!

  • TnzSki

    Oh so there IS a messaging system. I had heard that there wasn't going to be one until a software update later on.

  • I can't believe Pictochat is gone! Whenever I got bored of the games because I had beaten them all 50 times each, and my computer was celebrating crash every two seconds day, I would send pictures to myself! (I have no friends) What am I going to do, now? Send messgaes to myself? No.

    • zeldafan4040

      OMG how sad…

  • darkgerudo

    The more I read about this, the more I want it. And I’ve been leery of getting it due to the fact that I would have to turn off the 3D. Right now I’m in the “Since I won’t have that kind of money any time soon, perhaps I should wait until it lowers in price” train of thought.

  • cloverplayer

    yah thats exactly my thoughts I'll probly buy it in two years for like 100 bucks lol but it still looks awesome

  • jwalraven

    The DSi XL and 3DS use the same A/C adapter. 🙂

  • What about the webrowser? But other than that I’m saveing up for one.

  • Soeroah

    I am looking forward to it, though I am a bit concerned about Street Pass / Spot Pass requiring you to walk around with your 3DS in 'sleep mode' when the battery storage isn't as high as the DS.

    I mean, presumably sleep mode will keep the battery lasting 10 times as long or something, but I'd prefer to test that out or have confirmation before I start walking around with my 3DS on in my bag. Chances are if I take it with me when I walk, I want to play it, not have it run out of batteries after I open it up :p

    Anyone have a link to confirmation on the sleep mode battery life?

  • Dejiblob

    three more days till they're released in Oz. i think i saw in a game shop that they cost around $365?? somewhere round that… Its now going to be a decision between spending my monies on Skywards Sword or 3ds…..

    • Chris

      the RRP in Australia is $349.99 AUD but shop around and you will pick up one for cheaper…

  • Shadowknight1

    Mine is on its way. I would've waited until OoT was ready for it, but there's regular DS games that are begging to be played! I'm SO glad I didn't buy a DS yet.

  • Anorand

    I still Can't believe I got one!!!!

  • Anomonous

    Is there anything anything the 3ds can't do 🙂

    • PhantomLinebeck

      it can't do your homework… i think…

  • goronbot

    I cant have one my parents said no more DS

  • TrustMe101

    Oooh… I wasn't planning on getting one, but this just sounds too irresistible! My parents wouldn't be too thrilled to buy one, and I don't even really have a job or something to get the money…

    Grr…. would anyone be willing to let me borrow it? 🙁

  • Zelda2777

    I Have been saving up since last E3. I only have 50 dollars and I am not a big spender…

    • PhantomLinebeck

      that's bad. i'v saved $350 since E3, but i'm not geting it until next E3…

  • GoronGliscor

    I don't have enough money to get a 3DS….oh well. On the bright side, I can wait for a special edition 3DS like the red one above or maybe even an OoT themed one!

  • D..

    Yay, I got one now (NZ release today). Picked it up on the way to work, and it is sitting in it's cradle on my desk, charging as i write this (How long do they take to charge? Been about 2 hours so far)…

  • joopasaur

    i bought a 3ds today. love it, but there are a few things i hate. such as the camera doesn't have the distortion mode like the dsi. that's lame. and when playing ds games the screen is cut on the left and right sides. also lame.

  • Kevbot

    There is no messaging system yet. And there is no date for when one will become available. Super Street Fighter IV is pretty awesome as well. This thing is just about as powerful as the Wii, if not more. It does have more RAM than the Wii. Just wish we knew all the specs on it.