Is Nintendo 3DSXL still any good?

The Nintendo 3DSXL is a handheld game console manufactured by Nintendo. It was first released to the public in November of 2012, eight years after its ancestor, the Nintendo DS. Many would say the console has aged well and is still popular to this day. In this post, we will go over the good and the bad of the Nintendo 3DS and my overall thoughts.

The Good

  • The super stable 3D. If you’ve ever owned a 2DS, you will know that feeling of your focus being drained after long gaming sessions and staring at the screen. But this new feature adds kind of a layer of depth. I turn it on for every game I play. I’ve tested it with several games and it looks the best in these:

Ocarina of Time, Donkey Kong Country Returns, Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate, Animal Crossing, Mario Golf: World Tour

In short, for someone who was never sold by the feature, consider me converted. Multiple times I’ve felt like the screen had a room inside that was secretly opening for me.

  • The C-stick. It just feels perfect for games like Monster Hunter 4 Ulitmate.
  • Screen size. It’s neither too big nor too small. It’s just perfect for the games you can play on the 3DS
  • The enhanced engine really makes a difference when you’ve become used to an older model. Switching between games, navigating the menus, and other activities feel FAST. It’s nothing major for those that don’t mind the wait, but for someone who lives for fast loading times and switching between activities, it’s just perfect.
  • The buttons feel great, and from what I’ve gathered so far, they’re durable.
The Nintendo 3DS (Monster Hunter 4)

The Nintendo 3DS (Monster Hunter 4)

The Bad

  • The Stylus. While for most people the 2DS stylus was a perfect size, many would expect the XL would be a bit larger. However, that was not the case. What you get is a thicker yet smaller stylus that just feels unsatisfying. Plus the positioning on the bottom side has been a serious issue for me.
  • The glossy finish, while it looks beautiful to look at, I just had that feeling: “I don’t wanna touch it because it’ll leave smudges all over”. And that is, in fact, the case.
  • The whole transfer process, while a pain, isn’t something to complain about.  Yeah, it takes time to transfer over the games, but it’s not that big of an issue.

So, what’s the conclusion on the Nintendo 3DS XL?

If you’re on the fence take into consideration some of the points I’ve made and decide if the upgrade is worth your while. While I do think the $200 might be a steep upgrade price if you’re going to trade in a pre-owned 3ds system than I think the updated version is the way to go.