As most tech and gaming enthusiasts would know E3 has recently been underway where Microsoft , Sony and Nintendo released and previewed what is to come in the near future. The 3 day expo brought exciting news such as Microsoft’s unveiling of the new 360. The 250GB console looked completely different with a glossy outer shell with more angles instead of previous curves. However the most important announcement relating to AppChatter came from the Nintendo press conference. There had been speculation before E3 of a 3D handheld form Nintendo however many were skeptical if something like this could be pulled off especially without even using glasses, but when it came to the day all worries were put aside when the 3DS was revealed.
It seems that the 3DS is a direct response to Apples storm on the hand held gaming market since the App Store launched in 2008. Both Sony and Nintendo have tried to replicate this store for the PsP and DS but have had little success, this is mainly because they simply tried to copy it instead of doing something original. What is also interesting to see when comparing the stores is the pricing, Majority of titles on the App Store are under $10.00 with most of them even being as low as $0.99, but when you look at the competitors their Apps are lucky to be under $10.00 even for the exact same title featured on the App Store. People ask why are the prices so different? and i have a number of theories. My first guess is down to ease of use, the SDK for creating an app is only $0.99 and has a comfortable learning curve when starting to use it, so even if the developer only got 100 downloads they have already broken even. When it comes to the other stores indie developers are not interested, and so only the larger outfits or developers will pitch in and they come with “premium” pricing on all their titles which leaves people reluctant to purchase them so in turn that store is less of a success.
On to the 3DS, Nintendo have now created a new niche as no one has dared try 3D handheld gaming considering console gaming has not even reached that level yet. 3D however is not the feature being offered in the 3DS. There is now an analogue just above the d-pad on the left, this will be a savior to many as using the d-pad previously hindered games with the control being limited. There is also now a motion sensor and a gyro sensor which are now featured in the upcoming iPhone 4, also seen was two additional cameras with the outside two having the capability to take 3D photos. If we go very detailed we should mention that the top screen is now wider and wireless functionality has been much improved in the upcoming release.
The first titles to be released include Kid Icarus, Mario Kart, Nintendogs (+ cats) , resident evil and many more. You will notice that these games will make use of every feature available to entice more people in to purchasing and to spread the assumption that any following games will keep these standards.
It is clear to see that Nintendo are willing to take Apple head on for share of the portable gaming market, with the added gyro and motion sensor there is little the 3DS cant accomplish that the new iPhone can so 2011 is sure to see the two handhelds fight for sales. It is impossible to say which will come out on top with Apple having strong foundations with the app store and Nintendo bringing 3D gaming to your pocket but whatever to outcome is we will all be blessed with a new generation of gaming.