On Saturday, October 12, a new Nintendo handheld is set to release.
Known as the Nintendo 2DS, it's the latest entry into the company's 3DS lineup. Unlike the 3DS, which launched two years ago for $250 and currently sells for $169 ($199 for the 3DS XL), Nintendo is going value-oriented with the 2DS and will launch the device at a much lower price point in North America.
"It's an entry-level machine," said David Young of Nintendo of America. "So, if you're a big DS player and you want to get into a Nintendo 3DS; it's at a great price point - $129.99 - so you can start playing 3DS game."
Young also pointed out the appeal for children.
"If you have younger kids and mom or dad want to get their smartphones back, the Nintendo 2DS is the way to go," he continued.
While it's physically different than the 3DS and does not support the 3D visuals of its supported game software, the Nintendo 2DS system maintains many of the same hardware features as its three-dimensional brethren such as touch-screen controls, StreetPass, online multiplayer functionality, the ability to download games, and backwards compatibility including the entire DS game library. That last feature means that the 2DS will have literally more than 2000 available games at launch.
"You know, Nintendo's been really the leader in portable gaming for a long time and it's because we keep offering the consumer more choices," commented Young. "This is just another choice people can look at."
While the 3DS, like the DS systems before it, folded in half to be more portable and to protect its dual screens, the 2DS cannot. To minimize potential damage to the top viewing and bottom touch-sensitive screen, Nintendo has designed the 2DS' screens to be recessed. Furthermore, there will be official accessories that can be bought for the device to further protect it.
"There's also a carrying case that's gonna come out, sold separately, the same time as the 2DS" stated Young. "So you can get a carrying case to keep it in."
But, as it stands right now, Nintendo seems excited about bringing another handheld gaming system to market - even if it is a value-oriented model.
"The Nintendo 2DS system expands the Nintendo 3DS family," said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America's executive vice president of Sales & Marketing. "At such an attractive price, and with such a huge library of games, it's a great gift, no matter who you're shopping for this holiday season."
Nintendo 2DS launches on the same day as Pokémon X and Pokémon Y, the next installments in the Pokémon series. Those games are rated "E for Everyone" by the ESRB.