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Nintendo 3DS: Price Drop & Free Games!


Well, as you've no doubt heard, Nintendo is dropping the price of the 3DS, but here's all the details. Effective August 12, the price will drop a whopping $80 from $249.99 down to $169.99. I'd expected a price drop in time for the holiday shopping season, but not this much this soon!

"For anyone who was on the fence about buying a Nintendo 3DS, this is a huge motivation to buy now," said Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime. "We are giving shoppers every incentive to pick up a Nintendo 3DS, from an amazing new price to a rapid-fire succession of great games."

Clearly, they're trying to boost sales of the Nintendo 3DS, which I don't believe took off the way they were hoping. A price drop is a good way to go, but it would also be helped by a stronger library of games. Of course, with Star Fox 64 3D out on September 9, Super Mario 3D Land in November and Mario Kart 7 in December, if you get one for Christmas, you'll have more choices. (It's just too bad they couldn't have been available sooner!)

Of course, for early adopters, you can practically hear the groans and muttered cursing as they bitch about having wasted their money. Well, Nintendo is hoping to ease that pain by offering up a slew of free games. If you've already got a 3DS, all you need to do is log on to the Nintendo eShop at least once before 11:59 pm EST on August 11. That will register you in the Nintendo 3DS Ambassador program, and grant you some nifty goodies.

First, on September 1, Nintendo 3DS Ambassadors will be able to download 10 NES Virtual Console games for free, and also before they become available in the eShop for everyone else. These titles will include Super Mario Bros., Donkey Kong Jr., Balloon Fight, Ice Climber, and The Legend of Zelda.

Second, by the end of 2011, Ambassadors will recieve 10 Game Boy Advance Virtual Console games, including Yoshi's Island: Super Mario Advance 3, Mario Kart: Super Circuit, Metroid Fusion, WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$ and Mario vs. Donkey Kong. And these Game Boy Advance games will be exclusively available to Ambassadors. There are no current plans to make these games available to the general public at all.

So for those of you tempted by glasses-free 3D gaming, is this price drop tempting enough for you? And for those of you who already have a 3DS, does 20 free games help ease the sting of paying that extra dough?


Gamescook said:

If the $180 were to help sway me, Nintendo stating that they have no plans to make Metroid Fusion available to me or any new customer is sucking all that enthusiasm right back out. What. The. Frick.

They can't even overcharge the GBA games at $20 a pop to newcomers? This way they could still brag about the tremndous value early adopters get and let us new blood in on the fun on a game by game basis too.

Nintendo has been so opaque, dismissive, and arrogant these last few years (look at how they shooed off Operation Rainfall so callously!), and I for one would be glad to see Nintendo have a slice of humble pie. No more going to their portable, dual screened little ATMs like they have since 2006.

Wootini said:

I wouldn't worry about those GBA games never being available. The key words from the press release are "no plans at this time." Which is PR code for "we're saying this now, but we'll change our minds later on down the road."

Keith said:

Once there are some games worth playing, I might be interested.

Nostromo said:

Meh, I still have absolutely no reason to ever buy one. 3D is one gimmick that I will never to buy into.

Plus, the line up of games are just the same old, same old. Mario? Zelda? Starfox? I've already played these games before on past systems. Hey Nintendo! How about creating something new, or even create a new character, instead of recycling the same few games?

Gamescook said:

They haven't made a new IP since 2006 or so with Pikmin. Nintendo is stale and almost never offer a good story with their games. Why not put a gameplay innovation under a new IP instead of justifying Mario suddenly firing a squirt gun to get around or turning into a paper airplane?

And I can't justify buying a whole new system to play yet another plain ol' high-fantasy Zelda with the same three characters going through the same motions in five to eight elemental temples every single time.

Janvier said:

We'd rather they have put the 3DS at a cheaper price from the start. Not to mention, the Nintendo eShop is not available everywhere, so how about those of us (we're in Malaysia) where the eShop is not yet currently available?

jayoshi said:

What a bunch of negative Nancy! Well I'll be over here enjoying my 3DS and I'm looking forward to Super Mario 3D Land, Mario Kart 7, and Luigi's Mansion 2 :) I'm also looking forward to my free 20 games!

Christian said:

Since I cannot see with my left eye any form of 3D entertainment is impossible for me. When they invent 3D for one eye only count me in! :-P

Joe said:


Pikmin debuted in 2001.

So are we allowed to include Brain Age (2006), Art Syle (2008), Chibi-Robo (2006), Nintendogs (2005), Wii Sports (2006), Steel Diver (2011), Endless Ocean (2008) and WarioWare (2003) on the list of newish IPs?

How about titles that, sure, have been around for years in Japan but only fairly recently arrived in the West, like Custom Robo (2004), Fire Emblem (2003), Sin & Punishment (2007) and Starfy (2009)?

Or is this just a list of new IPs you personally remember?

Chaz said:

If Gamestop had not had a decent trade-in offer for the first week or so of the 3ds release, I wouldn't have purchased one. Now I regret doing so, and may sell it soon and invest in a PS Vita. I didn't buy a 3ds to play prettier ports and decade+ old games. And now with so many third party titles cancelled plus a price drop (Which sounds nice but pretty much means no one is buying the thing.) I've almost entirely lost faith in the system.

Mikey said:

I love my 3DS. Yes, the only games I have for it now are 3D Zelda and 3D Excitebike, but those experiences, plus the augmented reality games, the 3D camera, the ability to look at 3D GAY PORN (thanks to DominicFord), the new video channel, internet browser, Netflix, etc...has really turned me into a fan. I mean seriously, thinking back to being a child of the 80s and owner of the original super bulky's INSANE that now I can watch movies and TV shows on this Nintendo handheld. Technology's come a long way.

Did I mention 3D gay porn? lols

The 3D effect is perfect in Zelda. I can't WAIT to see some proper gamer games come out.

Nostromo said:

@ Joe

Only five out of the twelve games you listed were actually made by Nintendo. The rest were just simply published by Nintendo but made by other companies such as Treasure, Skip LTD, Intelligent Systems, etc.

Just saying... said:

Some people are just never happy...

tiny dancer said:

This system is tanking so hard that Mr. Iwata is taking a 50% pay decrease this year, but Nintendo seems clueless about why: there are so few games available, that making 20 games available for a short period of time and then REMOVING THEM from the handheld's ecosystem is frighteningly, terrifyingly stupid.

That's 20 games fewer incentive for anyone to buy the new, price-reduced system, and 20 games from which Nintendo seems to want to actively avoid making money. I don't get it, and I'm still unhappy to have paid for a 3DS!

Silver Phoenix said:

Only Nintendo fanboys defend this half-assed handheld as it was meant to cash-in on the 3D craze. Most developers don't even use the 3D effectively and you're only going to see Nintendo using it properly.

The PS Vita will be leaps ahead in quality and value, and it doesn't even need 3D.

SuperSwede said:

I have to say, this is actually quite tempting. With my PSP gathering dust (again), i'm somewhat in the market for a new handheld. While i'm not terribly hot on 3D -- that on the 3DS has the unfortunate side effect of giving me eye strain and a slight sense of disorientation while my eyes are readjusting -- but the 2D mode seems just fine for me. In fact, after fiddling with demo units a bit I've found that switching to 2D mode can give the framerate a bit of a boost, which is always nice.

Wootini said:

Tiny, they're not removing the games from the system. Early adopters... sorry, Ambassadors... will get early (and free) access to the first 10 Game Boy games, which will then later be available for purchase for everyone else. Those will stay in the eStore forever.

The second batch of 10 games for GBA will only be available for Ambassadors, but as I said before, they say that there are "no plans at this time" to make them available for regular eStore customers. But watch those plans change a month or so after the Ambassadors are done downloading their free games. It's not like Nintendo to turn down money, and those are some games people will probably buy.

Rob said:

Now if only they'll do something for the people who had to trade in their DSi's to be able to afford the 3ds.....

Joe said:


And as they are all exclusive to Nintendo systems, what does it matter if they were first party or second party? The point is that new franchises pop up all the time, shepherded by Nintendo, and just because YOU (or whoever) dislike them, that does not mean they do not exist.

It's just too easy (and incorrect) to cry "Mario! Zelda!" and point to Nintendo's failure of imagination. And notice that the third wheel that follows those two will change, depending on what's latest in the news. Today, you're crying "Mario! Zelda! Starfox!" Two years ago, it was "Mario! Zelda! Metroid!"

Nostromo said:


Whoa now! Turn down the bitchy queen mode for a second!

1: I never ONCE said that I disliked any of the titles you listed. In fact, I still have my import copy of Sin & Punishment and I love Endless Ocean. I just thought that maybe you should be aware of the difference between publishing and creating.

2: The NES is still my favorite system and I've been a Nintendo fan since Christmas 1986, but I've also been tired of Mario/Zelda/Metroid/Starfox since the N64 days. I was simply just stating how I feel about those franchises being stale for quite some time, and not just two or three years ago.

Geez buddy. Fucking relax.

Azuremage said:

Honestly, I would have preferred getting star fox 64 3d or mario land 3d for free instead of the 20 ports..cause there's no way they are worth anywhere close to the $80 dollar gap. I will give credit to a company like Apple who makes right by its customers if they have a sudden price drop. But I suppose there are some good games, mostly in the second batch, that I wouldn't mind playing.

And girls who like girls who like rumble packs!

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