The StreetPass system should be well-known within the Nintendo community; while it’s really popular in Japan, it’s not difficult to leave the house in America without receiving a single StreetPass. Konno and Iwata talked about the situation in the Iwata Asks: StreetPass Relay Point. While Konno has heard of how badly StreetPasses work in the US, he wanted to take a look at the situation himself when he had a long business trip in America. He decided to take a long walk through New York and was shocked to see that he hardly received any StreetPasses. Even when he passed by the Times Square in the heart of Manhattan he was disappointed by only a few hits. That was the moment he decided that they would have to change something about the way the StreetPass system is working in the Western society. The result of it was the relay points which came with the Augusts firmware update.

A relay point is a Nintendo Zone which collects data from by-passing 3DS systems, where the data is saved until the next person who carries a 3DS is passing by. The idea behind it was that the amount of StreetPasses is going to increase significantly by adding spots within a city. The relay points did help a tiny bit, but a significant change is something else.

Nintendo announced to change that and improve that system even further on their last Direct broadcast.

Nintendo announced that they plan to improve their system further. One step is to allow up to six free slots for each relay point instead of one, which will hopefully have a bigger impact. According to Nintendo the new limit is going to be activated in a few days. From then on every 3DS owner is going to obtain six StreetPasses each time they pass by a relay point instead of one. This should help completing puzzles or playing other (StreetPass) games!

Furthermore, Nintendo announced that they want to distribute game content via those relay points. They are starting with Animal Crossing: New Leaf,for which you can obtain a fedora from 1st to 15th October, and a sushi platter from 15th to 31 October. Nintendo mentioned that the games Mario Kart 7, Kid Icarus: Uprising and Super Mario 3D Land are going to receive such rewards too.

Up to now the improved relay point system has only been announced for the US.

For those of you who have never heard of it: the rule of thumb is that every McDonalds branch that offers free WiFi comes with a Nintendo Zone/relay point, passing by there might reward you with a few StreetPasses. If you aren’t sure you might want to take a look at Nintendo’s StreetPass Map on their website.

What are your thoughts on it? Have you been happy with the relay point system up to now or do you think that this upgrade should have been there to begin with?

Source: Nintendo Direct
Via: Joystiq