mark cerqueira well-rounded nerd

Xenoblade and the Nintendo 3DS++

A recent slew of announcements by Nintendo are tugging me in all sorts of directions.

  • I’m excited that Nintendo is porting Xenoblade Chronicles to the 3DS. The limited run and subsequent limited supply of Xenoblade copies in the US has put the game out of reach for many. Since it’s a game that truly captivated me, I’m happy that tons of people will now have the chance to experience it.

  • I’m kind of sad that the port is going to the 3DS and not the Wii U. The upcoming spiritual successor to Xenoblade Chronicles, Xenoblade Chronicles X, is a Wii U exclusive and from what’s been shown already, the game looks beautiful. People who emulate the original Xenoblade say it looks great: definitely better than what you get with a Wii. There is even an HD texture project to enhance the visuals further. I was hoping Nintendo would build hype for the sequel by giving the original Xenoblade a great HD remaster and releasing it for the Wii U. In my wildest fantasies, a Wii U bundle would feature a Monado-esque Wii U Gamepad. Instead, Nintendo is going the opposite route and will likely have to make the game look less impressive than it was on the Wii.

A boy can dream of wielding a Monado-WiiU-Gamepad!

  • I’m a bit confused with the news that the port of Xenoblade Chronicles will only run on a “new” 3DS – henceforth referred to as the 3DS++ – because it will require more RAM and CPU to run properly. The 3DS++ also adds an extra pair of shoulder buttons and a circle pad on the right side near the ABXY buttons. But what happens next? How is Nintendo going to effectively explain this fragmentation in its hardware to your average customer? I doubt developers will only develop for the 3DS++ and abandon the existing (and massive) 3DS market. But then what kind of allure will the 3DS++ itself have when it can only claim to run a few games that the 3DS cannot? Will developers spend resources to make the 3DS++ version of their game look nicer and take advantage of the extra inputs? Maybe, if the proper incentives (e.g. lots of money from Nintendo) are there. All in all, I’m excited about new hardware, but a bit irked by Nintendo messing with the massively successful 3DS.
  • I’m pumped that Shulk is going to be in the new Super Smash Bros. THIS IS THE POWER OF THE MONADO! I only wish Reyn could also be added so I can hear “IT’S REYN TIME” over and over again ad infinitum… Oooor maybe it’s better to leave him out.

Such emotions. Much range. Wow!