We’re mere hours before PAX Prime, and Nintendo has already dropped some major news in the reveal of a brand new handheld, with probably a poor name choice, in the New Nintendo 3DS.
The video Nintendo has released claims new control, new 3D viewing, new speed, and a new experience. What we can see visually is what looks like a sort of precision-based thumb stick (more like one of those eraser-type nubs in the middle of a laptop keyboard) above the buttons on the right side, two shoulder buttons on each side, and the power button has moved to the outside of the clam shell. There are other slight variations of the original form factor, such as the cartridge and stylus moving to the bottom-front area and the power moving to the center of he back. The start & select buttons moved to the right hand side, and volume controls move to the top screen on the opposite side of the 3D slider.
They also showcase in the “new experience” portion of the trailer that the New Nintendo 3DS will also have Amiibo support, by simply placing the figurines directly on the touch screen. Also in case you missed it elsewhere, the first round of Amiibo’s have been priced at $12.99. For new speed, we can assume the system will feature a better CPU than the previous models, which would allow for faster eShop purchasing and downloading. Perhaps one of the biggest aesthetic features to come to the new devices is that customer covers will be able to slide right on or off, allowing the owner to customize the hardware as they see fit and not need to buy a brand new 3DS every time a different looking version comes out.
Both the normal-sized white and “LL” sized blue models depicted in the video are scheduled to launch in Japan on Oct. 11, there is no word currently on a North American release, but if Nintendo was looking to make the most bang for their buck, they’d put this out for the holidays.