Sunday, December 26, 2010

Editorial: The Biggest News of 2010

There were many huge game related news announcements during the year of 2010. While many of them were about spectacular new games and new features to existing consoles, one piece of news stood out as being the most surprising and coolest announcement of them all. The piece of news I am talking about is the announcement of Nintendo 3DS.

There is so much to the Nintendo 3DS has improved on from the original Nintendo DS that it is easy to forget many of its new additions. The one that everyone remembers is the key feature which is its ability to display 3D images without the need of special glasses. At this point, it looks like Nintendo 3DS will be the first mass market product in the United States to do this. Aside from this and a more powerful machine capable of things such as an updated tag mode feature and a virtual console for GameBoy games, there are amazing new features which many of us forget about. The first of which is the fact that Nintendo 3DS will have a built in accelerometer and gyroscope which opens the portal to motion controls as advanced as the iPhone 4. Games like Super Monkey Ball can now use both traditional controls and motion controls similar to the Monkey Ball games on iPhone (Super Monkey Ball 3DS news here). It opens up new possibilities for controlling characters as proven on iPhone which uses the same technology. It also makes porting iPhone games a possibility now that 3DS uses the same motion controls and also has a touch screen.

The next big feature is the two camera lenses on the front of the device. These two lenses can take 3D pictures. This one feature may be the "killer app" that the device needs to appeal to people who do not play video games. Taking 3D images and being able to view them without the need to wear glasses is an amazing idea for a singular device. Of course the specifications of the cameras have not been announced yet but I would guess that these 3D images will only look pretty on a screen the size and resolution of the 3DS. If the Nintendo DSi had only 0.3 megapixels, the megapixels on 3DS cannot be much higher.

Nintendo 3DS can also play 3D Hollywood movies. Specifics have not been announced yet but this could be a selling point for those who want 3D movies on the go. 3D in the home will not take off until an ample amount of content is available and the glasses go away. 3D on the go however will take off rather quickly as no glasses are required. The fact that the 3DS will be a multimedia device will help it succeed. 3D gaming, movies, and photos will sell this a multipurpose device and is easily going to inspire manufacturers of mobile devices like cell phones and tablet computers to use the same parallax screen technology as the 3DS. Nintendo 3DS is a device that will change the way the mass market looks at 3D. It will not be a joke any longer. It will be something that most people can enjoy and afford.
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