Oh yes, I have been one of those wierdos who went out and preordered the DS a few months ago (thus managing to get one today). In NJ most (if not all) game stores were out of stock... so I feel bad for those poor fools expecting it for christmas. Indeed. Four million units were released world-wide (and no more will be until after the holiday season), and nearly four million were preordered. In other words, not much more remains. If you want the DS, have money, and see a store still clinging to one, grab it IMMEDIATELY! Otherwise, it might be gone soon.
Anyway, i'll go over what I like (and possibly dislike) about the system. I would like to note for those who want to keep everything secret to themselves, that this will likely CONTAIN SPOILERS for you!
- Larger, more-durable, and of higher resolution than the GBA. With the addition of the back-light, they seem practically perfect. When playing GBA games, the GBA game can be displayed on either screen, your choice. The top screen can be "locked" into two positions. One lock is in a position nearly like that of the "lock" on the GBASP. The second lock makes the DS go in a vertical position (in simpler terms, making both screens vertical to you.) The touch screen is highly sensitive, and very efficient. The touch screen is even more durable than the top screen, and rarely gets scratches (unless unnecessary force is used).
- Not much here. I hear rumours that there is a defect with a few systems. This defect is a "dead LCD". It is not that the entire screen is damaged, but more that one (or a few more) pixels are colored abnormally. When the DS is held in the first "locked" position, you might notice that the touch screen seems darker. This is merely because of the angle it is held at, not a problem with the screen. Other than that... no problems.
- There are many ways to use the DS. Many functions request you to use the touch panel, but may be done via the buttons as well. There are still some functions requiring you to use the touch pad though. It isn't any kind of hindrence though. Many interesting things can be done in games with the Touch pad... but the really depends upon what game you are playing.
- Learning how to use the Touch pad in games (using it in tasks such as an emulated analog control) can be a hindrence. Though once learned, it will stick with you.
- Wow... didn't expect this one did you? The DS has the best interface on a portable gaming device EVER (as far as I know). When you first start your DS it will ask you a few questions such as your nick-name (what you will be referred to as in picto-chat), birthday, and time. After this you can browse through your settings to change them to your preferences in the menu. After the first start up, you will see the normal screen. This displays the DS game that is currently able to be played, the GBA game currently able to be played, the "Download a Game" option, Pictochat, the menu, a sleep option, and even an alarm clock. Needless to say, it is flawless... perfect.
- None that I could notice.
- An interesting little tool to have. It contains the English, International, and Japanese alphabet. The drawing option allows you to draw with an enlarged or small pencil, and also gives you an eraser. You can join as many chat rooms as are available. Each room can contain up to sixteen people.
- Many people have spread the rumour the pictochat will instantly allow you to use the WiFi capabilities of the DS. This is untrue. The Pictochat program only functions with a mere 100 ft radius, needless to say; not that far above talking range. I hear there might be an update that allows Pictochar to be used via the WiFi connection though...
- What can I say, they are great. The demo of MP:H that came with the DS had superb graphics. They were clearly not of the GCN quality, but looked quite similar. Some of the moments in the demo made me wonder how far the DS's graphical abilities can be pushed.
- Not all DS games will feature the greatest graphics it has to offer. This is to be expected, however. Other than this... not much can be said negatively about the DS regarding graphics.
- Simply put, it has great sound. From the start up sound to an orchestral part of the demo of MP:H, you will notice the superior sound abilities. Much better than the GBAs, much louder (when on the top setting).
- I personally have no complaints about sound-quality as of this point.
- The DS will come with a charger, a copy of the demo for Metroid Prime: Hunters, and a wrist band. The charger is able to be folded up, it quite durable, and is actually quite small. The wrist band is not only good for holding on to the DS with, but it has a secondary purpose as being used as the analog stick. There is a loop put there intentionally for you to put your finger in, there is a smooth piece of plastic on the opposite side of your thumb. This allows it to be quite useful in games that can use the touch screen as an analog control. The demo that comes with the game can be described as "short but sweet". This demo shows you the graphical power of the DS, while also prooving to be quite entertaining. In single player mode, this game has three available modes of play. "Defeat the holograms", "Survival mode", and "Morph-ball maze" (posibly not exact names). I have not completed everything, there are apparently some unlockable things in the demo. I have not tried the multiplayer mode yet, but it can be played with up to four people in a death match. I can't be sure, but I think you might be able to select maps. Needless to say, for a demo; it is very impressive.
- Nothing particularly mentionable...
All in all, it is a great handheld. It has sold extroadinarily well, the only negative thing I can say of the launch date is the lack of GREAT launch titles. Impressive games are scheduled to come out in the coming months. It is strange how this nearly sold-out handheld has so few good titles at launch.
...And flaming creatures rained down from the skies, engulfing both land and sea aflame. Upon that day, the prophecy was made.
Nov 21, 2004 23:07
Wait, don't you think Super Mario 64 DS is a great launch title? I personally think that SM64DS is a really interesting and original game.
PictoChat not used on WiFi capabilities? Hmm...I didn't know that.
President of the SMFC
Super Mario Fan Club -----------
The best Mario club, only for the best Mario fans!
Nov 22, 2004 16:22
Super Mario 64 DS is a good game, but it's still a port. I played it for like six or seven hours straight yesterday, until my batteries almost died and I realized I had a test to study for. Most of the new stuff is fairly cool, but I still have a problem with Wario. In single player, the only thing he can do is break certain blocks. He's slower and doesn't jump as high as anyone else. I don't understand how he's useful at all.
I just wish that the touch screen analog control was somehow better. It took me quite a while to get used to it (I died like five times against Whomp because Yoshi wouldn't run underneath him.), but it works okay now. Still not as good as I want, but the fact that Super Mario 64 is super awesome makes up for that.
Endless Horizon "You're full of nothing!"
Nov 22, 2004 19:45
True, I got SM64:DS for my DS. I think it was really the only decent DS game at launch. The other games didn't seem to have much appeal. I am very happy with SM64, but it is STILL a port (though a REALLY good one, almost different from the original).
And yes, Pictochat isn't WiFi compatible... but that is being worked on. Developers (those creating wireless functions such as warppipe) have already taken huge steps in getting the DS to function over the net with games that were only intended for the WLAN. This means Pictochat, as well as any games currently only playable with WLAN will be playable online as well. The site having the most promise in this endeavor claims they will have it done by (or before) Christmas. They supposedly already have a good amount of work done. The website is:
There are also plans to give the DS an operating system, such as linux. A post I quote said:
"Linux Coming To The DS?
November 03, 2004
by: Seth Walker
Linux fans are bringing their favorite operating system to the Nintendo DS.
Linux fans at Nintendo DS Linux have made it their goal to bring a version of Linux to the Nintendo DS. With the PDA like abilities found on the Nintendo DS its a no brainer to bring PDA-style-operating system to the handheld. The group even offers a $1000 reward to the first person who can get a version of Linux ported to the system before they do."
As you research in to news regarding the DS, you only find more and more interesting things...
Why do I do this to myself?!?!
Nov 23, 2004 18:40
Hmm...Linux for Nintendo DS? That would really rock - Nintendo would be unbeatable.
Oh, by the way, Wario Ware DS looks pretty promising thanks to the touch-screen technology. And the new Pac-Man game also looks pretty fun.
President of the SMFC
Super Mario Fan Club -----------
All your base are belong to us.
Nov 23, 2004 21:06
Does it play Game Boy and Game Boy Color paks?
To wield a sword is to wield the most divine and diverse weapon of all time.
Nov 24, 2004 14:06
From my knowledge, it only plays DS and GBA games.
I'm not too disappointed, tho'. I can get a DS and play all the newest games and use my GBA to play all my old and "Color" games. My original GB was literally falling apart, at least screenwise it was.
The DS is so cool looking. It about time they realized that graphics and sound can only do such much, its gameplay that makes the games good. Hooray for intellegence.
"Turk, you just got schooled by the two whitest chicks in American!"
"None of you can prove it, though."
"I got it on tape!"
~ Scrubs. Pricless!
Dec 24, 2004 3:44
Yeah. The DS is very sexy. I am so happy I am getting one fore Christmas.
* fabricates a NintendoDS *
But if you thing the DS is impressive, you should see the Nintendo BS!
( :[_] = [_]: )
(+[_] :: [_]+)
With four screens, this is truly a force to be reckoned with! Fully compacted, it is about the size of a grapefruit. Each of the four screens can display a total of 16 pixels! Its NES quallity graphics leave competitors in the dust. Comes with a built in soft drink holder and central air conditioning. The Nintendo BS requires 47.3 D cell batteries for a total of 12 minutes of gaming, 15 minutes if you turn off all sound and extra features. We hope to see what Nintendo has in store for use with this latest system. Rumor ha it that this new console will hit shelves sometime in 2406, so get those wallets ready!
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