Nintendo 3DS discontinued after a decade of sales2 minute read

Nintendo have officially stated “manufacturing of the Nintendo 3DS family of systems has ended”

After nearly 10 years and 76 million sales Nintendo have discontinued the 3DS from their family of consoles. It means that the DS will retain the handheld sales record.

The 3DS started life out poorly. It had a poor launch-day catalogue of games and a high launch-price too. A whopping £200 would get you the Nintendo 3DS, but to experience the stereoscopic 3D you needed the console. This meant any sceptical buyer would not purchase the console.

The stereoscopic 3D was an innovation for the console market, and it meant you could experience 3D without the necessity of glasses. However further trouble came when people started experiencing nausea. Nintendo later advised that children under six years old should not play on 3D-mode.

The 2DS enters the Nintendo handheld family

Nintendo later released the Nintendo 2DS, which was a DS console capable of playing the 3DS games in 2D. This was surely down to the fact that they had removed an entire demographic from owning a 3DS console. The release of the 2DS was also a way around nausea. Of course the 3DS console had the ability to turn the 3D settings off, but Nintendo knew children would not obey this.

The Nintendo 2DS was released to save the 3DS gaming market (image credit: Nintendo)

Another amazing feature of the 3DS however was its augmented reality ability. This was made possible by its 3D cameras on the rear. The console came packed with augmented reality cards which allowed the player to turn parts of their living room into an innovative world.

Despite the initial unpopular reception the console still went on to sell near 76 million units as it gained traction further into its life. It surely ends another era in handheld gaming, and it will be interesting to see where the Nintendo 2DS fits into Nintendo’s plans as we move into the next generation of console and handheld gaming. Nintendo already have their Switch, so has the 2DS still got the required sales to keep it going?