Following on from its release in Japan last month, Nintendo's 3DS began its march across many of the remaining major markets last week, beginning with Europe on Friday and North America on Sunday. And as is occasionally the case with new hardware, there appear to be a few bugs that have yet to be worked out.
Over the weekend, reports began to surface online that the 3DS is beset by system instability, colloquially referred to as a "Black Screen of Death." Afflicted users, which include a GameSpot editor, report that the error results in a full system crash, and they are subsequently presented with the following message:
"An error has occurred. Hold down the POWER button to turn off the power, then turn it on and try again. If the problem persists, please contact your local customer support center. For contact details, check the Operations Manual or visit support.nintendo.com."
Users have reported encountering the error in a variety of situations, including playing third-party games such as Capcom's Super Street Fighter IV: 3D Edition, as well as in built-in programs like Nintendo's Mii Maker application. One user on the Official Nintendo Magazine forum even reported receiving the message while his or her system was idle on the Home menu.
It is not yet clear if the system crashes are due to a firmware issue affecting all users of the system or whether the issue is hardware related. Nintendo had not responded to GameSpot's request for comment on the situation as of press time.