Posts Tagged 3DS

Iwata: Gamers need dedicated handhelds, have a desire for ‘rich and deep’ experiences

The argument for the 3DS has been precarious at the outset, price not withstanding. With the rise of the iPhone and Android devices, people are playing more games on their phones and tablets than ever before, cutting into a handheld gaming market dominated by Nintendo for more than a decade.

“I don’t think there’s not a bright future for handheld devices but I understand that the competition, again with the rise of smart devices is different, and I do recognize that,” Nintendo president Satoru Iwata told Kotaku during a frank discussion on the 3DS and current portable gaming ecosystem. Iwata offered insight, not only on his own company’s stance, but on the needs of consumers in general ? and how Nintendo isn’t trying to compete so much as offer value.

“Previously we had to think, ok, ‘How are we competing with Sony?, How are we competing with Microsoft?, How do we compete with all the other software titles and all the other publishers out there?’ That environment has changed. And the games available for smartphones, I’m not saying that none of these are interesting, rich or fun experiences, because I know that there are some. And one way we can ensure that there’s a market for handheld gaming devices is by continuing to bring out entertaining and engaging software that will provide users experiences that they cannot get on these other devices.”

Iwata expects the need for “rich and deep” experiences will remain consistent, even while consumers change the context in which they play games. “I believe that as environments change and as the world progresses we’re going to have different ways in which people want to spend their time,” he said. “That being said, I don’t think we’re going to see the desire to have, again, rich and deep sort of gaming experiences… we’re not going to see that vanish. That’s not going to go away.”

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Portabliss: Tumble Pop (3DS eShop)

Did you know that you can download handheld games now? That’s amazingly convenient! The only inconvenient part of it is finding the right games to buy — and that’s where we come in, with our Portabliss column. In each installment, we’ll tell you about a downloadable game on the iPhone, iPad, Android device, DSi, 3DS, PSP, etc. Today: Tumble Pop. When I started playing my review copy of Tumble Pop, I went in completely fresh. I had barely heard of it, paid little attention to it, and knew almost nothing besides having been published by Data East. And now I have a pleasant little pastime sitting on my 3DS, ready to provide me a few minutes of idle, low-stress entertainment whenever.

Tumble Pop sort of follows the Bubble Bobble school of platforming. Each level is a series of vertically stacked platforms in which various monsters wander left and right. There’s a variety of cute ghosts, invisible men (or walking hats and gloves), some … fire sprite things, a couple of clowns ? your basic assortment. Your job is to patrol each enclosed stage and suck up all the monsters with your backpack-mounted vacuum cleaner. They’ll respawn out of gates a few times, and the stage ends once you’ve picked up all the monsters the stage has to offer.

After you pick up a monster, your vacuum will spit out a star that rolls across the level and becomes a power-up when it hits the wall. You collect these and activate them from a menu, choosing from temporary invincibility, a wider vortex from your vacuum, faster movement, and more. If it’s not a power-up, it’s a letter ? the stage abruptly ends and you get thrown into a bonus game when you spell “TUMBLEPOP” in full.

What I really like about Tumble Pop is the illusion of depth it provides. There are multiple Super Mario

World-style map screens full of levels, with freely accessible bonus game levels and certain boss areas in which you fire projectiles back at a large enemy. However, the gameplay is still comfortingly simple inside any of these levels.

Having now experienced the Game Boy game, I have to seek out the arcade version to see this same bouncy little experience in bright, cartoony color. I love these rare cases of being introduced to a retro game I wasn’t originally familiar with via the Virtual Console. Most people prefer to relive the classics they love, but I enjoy these discoveries.

Tumble Pop is available for $2.99 on the 3DS eShop.

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Nintendo’s 8-bit Summer on 3DS eShop has these eight classics

Nintendo has dubbed July the “8-bit Summer,” and plans to launch eight Virtual Console games for the 3DS eShop next month, beginning July 5 with The Legend of Zelda . Kirby’s Pinball Land and The Sword of Hope 2 will hit on July 12, Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters and Tumblepop will land on July 19 and Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 will arrive on July 19. Nintendo is also sending Sonic Blast and Sonic Labyrinth to the eShop during its 8-bit Summer. If you can’t remember what these games look like in action, the above video should provide a handy reminder.

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