Apr 30 2017

The New Nintendo 2DS XL – It Makes Sense To Me

A few days ago Nintendo put out information on another handheld coming to the market – this time, an updated version of the 2DS hardware from a few years ago, named (get ready for it): The “new” Nintendo 2DS XL.

This naming scheme follows the terrible naming trends Nintendo has been known for for the past 15 years, and more importantly follows the naming of the “New” Nintendo 3DS XL from 2 years ago. This console is, basically, the same as the New 3DS XL – all the features that were in the previous console, such as the little c stick, the upgraded processor and the larger main screen,, but in a version that doesn’t do the 3D effect the 3DS is known for.

As the title of this article suggests, this makes perfect sense to me: Even with the Switch, Nintendo still wants to push the DS for a little while longer and let it die gracefully, as it has been incredibly successful for the past decade + in it’s several forms. Upgrading the 2DS variant to match the top end 3DS was an overdue option, and making it an “XL” variant (basically just a larger-screened unit) compared to the moderately sized original, non-folding 2DS also makes sense.

That’s what’s worth noting though, the 2DS suddenly now folding. What’s the deal there? The original 2DS was known for being a “slab” form factor, and there’s a reason for that: if memory serves correctly, the original 2DS and the Wii U gamepad used the same screen, it being divided in software and with a cover in the 2DS to create the illusion of 2 screens, which works just fine.

With the WiiU dead, no reason to produce displays for it, as I feel the 2DS used possibly rejected displays or otherwise feed off of the WiiU production lines for such, and as such with this source gone, well, no reason to continue the old model.

Of course, we will see, but 2DS consoles have been somewhat rare in shops since this past holiday season, an indication to me of them slowly cutting back production until it ceases to be, if this hasn’t already. Manufacturing the new 2DS XL under the same general design ethos as previous DS models just makes sense at this stage, as the 2DS seemed born as a matter of “we can make this work” rather than to fill any particular need.

Long story short on this though, I like it. I’ve always been fond of the 2DS (I don’t like 3D effects much) and having a buffed up unit might be cool – maybe I’ll invest in one, since we all know I’m barely gaming at home anymore.

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