Apparently, Nintendo fans feel a bit uneasy when it comes to the company’s 3DS.
The powerful handheld and successor to the immensely popular DS has failed to catch fire, as scores of new systems sit in stores awaiting purchase.
The situation is dire enough that the publisher’s figurehead and Mario creator, Shigeru Miyamoto, publicly admitted that while the machine performed below expectations, sales will pick up later this year, thanks to a variety of games that put the impressive technology on display.
For now, it remains to be seen whether 3DS has what it takes to dethrone DS, but one thing’s certain: these five games will give the portable a much needed boost at retail.
Super Mario 3D (fall/winter 2011)
When it comes to Nintendo, never bet against Mario. The plumber’s DS adventure, New Super Mario Bros. sold in excess of 18 million copies, and we expect a similar performance from Super Mario 3D, which hits 3DS later this year.
The fully 3D adventure throws Nintendo’s mascot into a world full of gold coins and goombas, where players jump and stomp their way to victory. The addition of the Tanooki suit from Super Mario Bros. 3 should tug at gamers’ heartstrings, while all new levels will attract players from across the globe.
Mario Kart 3DS (fall/winter 2011)
Consumers sure love Mario Kart. The DS version, released in 2005, has notched an impressive 20 plus million units sold. In fact, the game’s so popular that DS owners still enjoy it today.
To that we say, it’s time for an upgrade. Mario Kart 3DS retains the turtle throwing mayhem the series is known for, but ups the ante with faster play, karts with hang gliders and the ability to race under water, among other features. It will definitely improve the 3DS’ stock moving forward.
Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games (February 2012)
Despite receiving average review scores, Sega’s Mario & Sonic Olympics games captivated fans that in turn purchased more than 15 million copies for Wii and DS combined.
On that note, expect a similar performance for the London edition that boasts more events (judo, kayaking, balance beam), gyroscope support and online leaderboards, along with a wide cast of characters from both franchises. It’s just a shame players must wait until early 2012 to get their hands on the 3DS version.
We’re more interested in seeing the next evolution of the franchise and sequel to the critically acclaimed Black and White, where players locate wild Pokemon and pit them against rivals in the hopes of becoming powerful trainers. Expect great things, and huge sales, when it finally arrives.
Animal Crossing 3DS (2012)
It doesn’t star Mario and Luigi, but Nintendo’s Animal Crossing series has real staying power. The DS version, Wild World, crossed the 10 million copies sold mark, while the Wii edition, City Folk managed a respectable three million plus.
Apparently, gamers enjoy living in fictional towns populated by talking animals, and will fish, dig and decorate for hours. Look for more of the same in the highly anticipated, though still mysterious 3DS sequel.