Why the 2DS doesn’t make sense for consumers:
The 2DS is not an upgrade. Although it’s a newer edition to the 3DS family, nothing in the 2DS is an improvement over its original relative. In fact, the 2DS has had an extremely important feature taken away –
It no longer supports 3D capabilities. This is problematic, as some 3DS games rely on this feature as an essential facet of gameplay. Secondly, the 3DS can function in 2D anyway. An option to turn off 3D mode and effectively play the same games in 2D has always been included.
The shape. As a portable device that cannot fold, the 2DS is noticeably less portable than its predecessors. This odd slate design also leaves the screen unprotected and susceptible to scratches. The “wedge” shape of the 2DS has even been compared to that of a doorstop.
For Nintendo, the 2DS makes sense because:
It’s the holiday. The release of the 2DS means a new handheld will be available for the holiday season. And with the holidays as an excuse, it will sell, because kids always want new things and parents may not understand that for Nintendo at least, new does not mean better.
Pokémon. The 2DS comes out in stores on October 12, the same day as Pokémon X and Y, easily Nintendo’s bestselling handheld franchise. Since this is the first 3DS Pokémon game (and therefore can only be played on the 2DS, 3DS, or 3DS XL), any lingering Pokémon-loving DS players will have to upgrade their system. The 2DS provides a less expensive, innovative alternative.
3D may cause eyestrain. Not to mention the 2DS’s lack of 3D capabilities is especially agreeable for the plethora of worried parents who insist that 3D gaming leads to bad vision.
Price. For comparison, the 2DS costs $129.99 while the 3DS is $169.99. The $40 less may not seem to account for the features lost, but it has been posited that Nintendo hopes for 2DS sales to offset the upcoming $50 price drop in the Wii U.
Looks. Finally, despite the logical problems created by its shape, I’ll be one to admit; the 2DS just looks cool. Not only is the flat, rectangular appearance fashioned after the popular tablet craze, but the design also brings me back to the good-old days of Game Boy Color.
In the end, although all sensible reason screams no, Nintendo got me – I want one. And if I didn’t already own a 3DS, I’d likely be taking the 2DS into serious consideration.