A few complaints about the 3DS


It’s been over three years since the 3DS came out, and ever since I had it, I already embraced it in the same way I embraced the DS, but with every console has its flaws, and today, I’m going to highlight some of the negative aspects of the console. These are the areas where Nintendo screwed up.

The 3DS carts don’t retain save data

Remember in the old days where you can play a portable game, and if it had a save function, the cartridge would retain the save data. This was true for every handheld Nintendo console up until the 3DS. The 3DS uses an SD card for storing save data, and that means only one thing: the 3DS games don’t save data into the cartridge.

To explain this in simpler terms, this means that if you were to put your 3DS game in a 3DS console that you haven’t played it on, it will be as though you just started playing the game. In the past, you could play the same DS or GBA cartridge on another console, and there would still be save data within the individual cartridge. If they could do it on the older DS games, why can’t you do it with 3DS games? Just because the PSP uses the SD card doesn’t make it a better console.

The 3DS is region-locked

Prior to the Nintendo 3DS, all Nintendo handhelds where region free, meaning you could play a foreign game cart on your own system. This would always come in handy if there was a game you wanted, but was unavailable in your region. Given that the DS was region-free, it baffles me why they made the 3DS region-locked console.

For those who don’t know what region locking is, its basically an old form of digital rights management. It keeps games from a foreign region from working, but Nintendo also used the NES’ authentication chip (which enforced the regional lockout) to try and prevent unlicensed NES games from working. That’s all fine and dandy, but this isn’t the 1980’s. We live in the year 2014, and Nintendo still has a regional lockout. Why?

Its even more baffling because Nintendo’s competitors already see region-locking as obsolete, and I say this because every Sony console since the PSP isn’t region-locked, and even the Xbox One isn’t region-locked. When even the Xbox One isn’t region-locked, you just know that Nintendo is pretty much behind.

The 3DS Virtual Console service doesn’t have much variety

One thing I like about the 3DS is the Virtual Console. Finally, I can play NES games on the go, but there isn’t a lot of variety when it comes to NES games. In the UK, only 56 NES games were released on the Virtual Console, and of them, and I doubt that a lot of them were interesting enough for me to want to buy. Yes, they have the classics, but any console willing to sell me Milon’s Secret Castle must have some problems.

I honestly thought that this would be a great opportunity to release Game Boy Advance games on Virtual Console, but they haven’t gotten round to releasing GBA games on the Virtual Console, unless you were a 3DS Ambassador. They also have a lot of crappy Game Gear games on the Virtual Console library, and that’s not a good sign.

Also, is there any reason why the NES games are so pricey? They usually cost either £3.59 at minimum, or £4.49 at maximum. Why charge so much for games that are usually quite short by today’s standards. Besides, if you have an emulator, you can get the same ROMs on the Internet for free.

There aren’t a lot of good games

I’ve had the 3DS for over three years, and in that time, I’ve bought ten games for the system, and only seven of them were really good. The 3DS game library suffers the same problem as the DS. Not that many third-party companies and franchises are willing to support it. When the 3DS first came out in the UK, all we got were downgraded 3D ports of other games that were on consoles, plus a bunch of movie-licensed titles. The only game I’ve played on the 3DS that was truly great was Fire Emblem Awakening.

To be fair, I shouldn’t always expect great games on the handheld consoles, since major companies don’t always support them, but a lot of games on the 3DS seem to have been made for kids and/or casual gamers, and as a hardcore gamer, that tends to annoy me.


Overall, the 3DS has its flaws, but it’s still a good console. I guess I’m mainly satisfied because I can play NES games on it. Besides, there are some really good games coming out for the 3DS pretty soon, and I’m willing to wait for those games.


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