After much anticipation since E3 2010, the star of that show, the Nintendo 3DS has finally launched. This was culminated with a day long party in Union Square in New York City on the 26th leading into the first ever 3DS sales at the Union Square Best Buy at midnight of the 27th. Nintendo's hoping to launch into a new era of gaming with the 3D handheld but only time will tell just how successful it will be. Everyone remembers the fantastic launch of the PSP with its fancy PS2-esque graphics and do everything system. How did that turn out? There's similar anticipation for this system but we'll only know how it turns out after a few months at least on the market if not years.
But don't get me wrong, we're rooting for this system. I personally am an unabashed fan of the DS compared to the PSP and wish the 3DS similar success in the market. Sure Sony could blow me away with the NGP which is slated to come out later this year, but right now, like always, Nintendo stands atop the handheld market in the United States and based on the quality of software for the DS and PSP respectively, if these trends continue, the 3DS has a great chance to not only maintain its current advantage over its Sony counterpart but increase it.
The system will retail for $249.99, an increased price point over the original DS but since this is an improved product with more power while also being similarly groundbreaking, that price can be justified. It's likely that the NGP will come out at an even higher price point so, like last time, Nintendo will probably still have the advantage there. As long as it's lower, Nintendo wins.
Cheap Ass Gamer has a launch center operating that shows the prices of the 3DS at various retailers as well as the prices and availability of the games available at launch. There's also the availability of games that will come out in the future so it's likely that this site will be up and running for a while at least. They've also got tabs for trade in offers such as how much you can trade in your current DS towards funds on the 3DS (DSi XL for example = $100).
The games for the system will retail at $39.99 as compared to $5 cheaper on the original DS. Again, like the full cost, these things happen as games become more expensive to make. If you want a more advanced system, these are the prices you have to pay, like it or not.
Stay tuned to pnosker.com for more coverage of the 3DS launch and hopefully a review unit from Nintendo in the near future. Until then follow me on Twitter @mtorino75 and get ready for Rango and Tiger Woods 12 reviews next week.