Hands On: Nintendo 3DS Part 3

February 7, 2011

Features

If you haven’t read them, follow the links for Part 1 and Part 2

 

Room 7

After being ushered out from the darkness of the previous room, in the middle of playing Ocarina of Time, I found myself in a much more bright and vibrant room. This room had different sections devoted to showing off either other new games or new technology that comes bundled on the Nintendo 3DS.

 

Super Monkey Ball 3D

The first game I jumped on to was Super Monkey Ball 3D. If you’re not familiar to previous “Monkey Ball” games then this sees you as playing as one of 4 monkeys trapped inside a ball. Similar to zorbing. You roll your was around a level, collecting bananas as you go, and try to make it to the end without falling off the stage. This game offered two styles of play, movement with thumbstick, or movement by tilting the 3DS, I chose the latter. Because I had to keep tilting the 3DS I found the console became out of focus and couldn’t display the 3D without going all blurry. As a result of this I simply turned down the 3D slider on the side of the console and played it in standard 2D. After dying a lot I moved on.

 

 

AR Archery

A minigame that comes bundles on the console, AR Archery uses a piece of technology called “augmented reality”. What this simply means is moving an object in real life and having this object directly manipulate the game. In this example a card laid on the table, with the design of a Mario Bros “?” block, was used to generate the game. After synching the 3DS to the card by aiming the camera at it, the card sprouted a target. To aim you move your 3DS in space and then pull R to shoot. Soon other targets sprouted, but faced other directions, requiring you to physically move around the table to reach these targets, as long as the card doesn’t come out of view of the camera. The way the game seemed to alter the real world was mind bending, with at one point a hole being made in the table and the only way to hit the target is to point your 3DS directly on top of the card to look down the hole. This game finished with a dragon sprouting from the card which you had to shoot multiple sections of, from different angles, to destroy. Although this only seems like a demo, it has strong potential for future games.

 

Face Raiders

Another game which takes place in augmented reality. This game has you taking a photo of your face, or of someone elses face. This face is then planted on to flying spheres which you have to shoot. To aim you turn the 3DS in real space, at points with the need to turn 360 degrees. As the faces fly towards you they attack you and if they succeed they rip a hole in the fabric of existence. Where the table was, now there is a gap in to space. Pretty nifty. Niftier is that the environment interacts with your game. If someones face happens to be picked up by the cameras then their face will be implanted in to the game along with your own. Its a nice feature and it comes bundled on the 3DS when you buy it. I had fun.

 

 

Mii Maker

As with the success of the Mii on the Wii, you can now do the same for the 3DS. You will find all of the same customising features which can be found on the Wii but there is one new feature I would like to touch upon. There is an option now to take a photo of your face, and then running the picture through a program, it will make an accurate representation to be planted on to your Mii giving it a facelift. It worked suprisingly well and sped up the whole tedious process of designing your face.

 

3D Camera

With the ability to view things in 3D, Nintendo thought it would be a good idea to allow you to take photos in 3D as well. The camera I wasn’t too convinced with. Although, yes, the images appeared slightly 3D, the effect wasn’t anywhere near as stunning as some of the games I had previously played. Some people will get a kick out of it though.

 

 

And that ends my adventure in London. The 3DS is a phenomenal piece of mobile gaming software and it will probably sell bucketloads. How will it fare up against Sony’s new NGP though? Time will tell.

The 3DS will hit shelves in Europe on March 25th

 

-Mevans

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