Nintendo: 3DS will 'really take off' in 2013

Director of product marketing Bill Trinen says software pipeline will enable portable to pick up speed this year.

The 3DS is poised to have a banner year in 2013 thanks to a compelling lineup of software, according to Nintendo director of product marketing Bill Trinen. Speaking with GameSpot today, the developer said Nintendo portables in the United States have historically taken a few years to see sales pick up, but when a solid pipeline of software is in place, the systems can really take off.

"We have noticed that in the US in particular, people tend to, at least when it comes to handheld gaming, they tend to shift generations a lot more slowly than they do particularly in Japan," Trinen said. "In Japan, once a new handheld system comes out it's like everybody just goes right to it."

"GameBoy Advance was the same way; DS was the same way; 3DS now. It does take a couple of years," he added. "But then once it does, it really builds steam and so with the lineup that we're seeing this year, to me it really feels like this is the year that 3DS is really going to take off."

As of December 31, Nintendo has sold nearly 30 million 3DS units and almost 85 million pieces of software worldwide. Those figures are well behind the original DS, which has sold over 150 million hardware units and 930 million games to date.

During a Nintendo Direct presentation today, Nintendo announced a slew of new 3DS titles, including a Legend of Zelda: Link to the Past sequel, a new Mario Party game, and an all-new Yoshi's Island title.

Nintendo also confirmed today that Bravely Default: Flying Fairy and a new Professor Layton game will launch on 3DS in 2014.

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Discussion

263 comments
TalesOfGod
TalesOfGod

3DS is obviously the best portable system on the market. Vita doesn't even come close.

Anyways, I'm really looking forward to future releases with the ones being released so far have been of top notch quality ^.^

Thanks a lot, Nintendo!

(1 request though, bring Time Travellers to english please!)

txwolf63
txwolf63

With all the talk about lack of games on the wiiu it's important to remember that they always say that on all past systems. The vita still hasn't recovered from that. The 3 ds took a year to recover and the Big N pulled it off. Here is one fact everyone misses. Nintendo takes a long time to make games for a reason and in this case hd is new to them.When is the last time nintendo patched a game. Maybe twice one for skyword sword and one for mario cart 7. Their games are usually flawless. Buy almost any game today on any other system and there is usually a patch already for it. If you buy a ps3 game it's flawed for months,skyrim,bf3,black ops 1 and 2 Rdr on and on. I have all the systems so I'm not bashing any on them. I have 2 360s and play that  and the 3ds the most

Elemental_Mage1
Elemental_Mage1

"Those figures are well behind the original DS, which has sold over 150 million hardware units and 930 million games to da"

NO SHIT A 2 YEAR OLD SYSTEM VS AN 8 YEAR OLD ONE

tightwad34
tightwad34

If things continue the way they are going, then the 3DS will probably end up being the best handheld of all time. Hell, it could even be put up there with some of the home consoles.

Furwings
Furwings

Bill is absolutely right on this. The 3DS upcoming lineup is incredible. We could get into a great debate over what demographic most of the Big N's first party games are geared towards and whether Nintendo has "hardcore" gamers interests at heart and so on and so forth. But as a gamer who plays everything from E to M, I'm super pumped about the latest Nintendo Direct and specifically Zelda Link to the Past 2!!! A sequel to my all-time favorite SNES game! I've got a Vita, but it mostly collects dust even though I'm a PS+ subscriber. I'm picking up a 3DS XL within a month or so for sure.

Aengelus
Aengelus

What else would they say about their own product? Umm well the 3DS is not going to sell very well this year. OF COURSE a company is going to have faith in their OWN product. Stupid article. 

Dannystaples14
Dannystaples14

Yeah the other consoles took off when they had a decent pipeline of games. I've yet to see a game I actually want to go out and buy for 3DS though and there aren't any games in the soon to be released that are any better. The next game I will consider buying is Pokemon X or Y but that is only because I want a 3D pokemon game. If the pokemon on it turn out to look like someone has thrown a piece of clay at the wall , that evolves into a piece of clay that is dry, I will be reconsidering that fact. That is if they even get around to making it 3D, what with the downhill slope Nintendo is on I wouldn't be surprised if they just ditched it completely.

Dasim64
Dasim64

I think this is just more wishful thinking by Nintendo. I don't see the 3DS "taking off" any more than it already has. Make a more powerful handheld and then instead of a screen attach it to the Oculus Rift if you want to see a portable system take off. That's the future of portable gaming. No TV required. Be part of the game world. Yea I'm ready for that.

kickingcarpet
kickingcarpet

Wii U will never take off, I mean come on. Playstation 4? Duh!

WingChopMasta
WingChopMasta

So if the 3DS is only 'really taking off' now. How long does the Wii U have to wait? Good ol arrogant Nintendo. They target the simple minded so they can pretty much do whatever they want whenever they feel like it. 


fgjnfgh
fgjnfgh

This is in retaliation for those who said Nintendo failed.

GERMANY21
GERMANY21

Really better than always online with microsoft ! 

joshphillips
joshphillips

Wish Nintendo would make a machine that was both portable and connected to my TV.  Like a 3DS that I could take with me then hook up to my tv when I got home.  Their portable library disembowels their home console lineup so why not just make a handled that does both? 

jakesnakeel
jakesnakeel

Maybe my kids are getting to old for nds now (10) but I'm not seeing any kids playing nintendo handhelds any more.  Now they all have ipods.  I would love to bet money against everything he says.  

mikemaj82
mikemaj82

too bad I sold mine a month after buying it when it was released.

decoy1978
decoy1978

To be honest, I am NEVER worried about Nintendo's handhelds (with the exception of Virtual Boy /shudders). They are pretty much UNDISPUTED when it comes to handheld gaming with the Vita coming in behind mobile gaming -_-. 

However, they really should be focusing on the Wii U, that system is in disarray. Saying that the 3DS will have a banner year is like saying that EA will piss off gamers in 2013, pretty... obvious...

Jyakotu
Jyakotu

Maybe Nintendo should just stop with the console hardware and focus on portable hardware, since that's where most of their business seems to come from right now. A lot of Japanese developers can't seem to keep up with the demand of newer console hardware and deliver, so they're flocking to handhelds to relive their glory days.

starfox15
starfox15

Well when you keep your flagship titles anchored in Japan along with all the support for them, (looking at you pokemon), you send a message that the US market can wait. Well, no it can't. Nintendo can't sit on the sidelines anymore and say "We'll get around to it" anymore. Pokemon launching in the US and Japan at the same time is a good example of this. The next games will launch at the same time and SHOULD be supported with updates and pokemon releases on the same dates. I'm buying a 3DS this month because I can't ignore the games for it anymore and my gf started playing pokemon. I think Nintendo's announcement of key franchises for the handheld will obviously draw more sales and interest this year. Now can we see some games for Wii U please? 

enoslives7
enoslives7

It appears nintendo has given up on the Wii-u and shifted all their support to the 3ds. It's a smart business move, but it screws over all the wii-u owners.

This is a repeat of when nintendo gave up on the gamecube and put all their support into the DS, before the wii was launched.

Morokoo
Morokoo

They say it like the 3DS isn't doing well in the first place.

digitaltiger
digitaltiger

4 months ago I had only 1 3ds game, now I have 4 games. Fire emblem, etrian odyssey 4 and smt soul hackers are my new games. I play only jrpg and srpg games, so handheld systems are more important to me then consoles. Now that the 3ds is getting these games there is a reason to buy the 3ds, games fuel hardware sales and that's why it takes at least a year for new systems to catch on.

TooCoolForYou
TooCoolForYou

Why is there so much 3DS news, but not a lot of WiiU news? Nintendo really needs to balance that out and start giving more people a reason to buy a WiiU.

deon99
deon99

The only reason why the 3DS is going to sale this years is because all the pokemon fans will finally be forced to move over to get Pokemon X and Y.

4r0d0
4r0d0

and..... what about that next-gen console you just launched???? Is that going to really "take off"?

Double_Wide
Double_Wide

Looking forward to it. The exclusives are already great and I can't wait for more.

Hurvl
Hurvl

"In Japan, once a new handheld system comes out it's like everybody just goes right to it." Yes, japanese people are good, obedient, well trained consumers who goes out to purchase the newest stuff when it comes available. Unlike the slow Americans. At least, that is what I'm reading into it. If your product doesn't sell in a particular country, it's not because there is something wrong with the people in that country.

CriticalCritic
CriticalCritic

The 3DS already has some of the best releases this year compared to home consoles.

dalua360
dalua360

@txwolf63 I have no experience with 3DS or DS at all, so I can't say anything about it, but one thing is true, Sony's and M$'s games these days are totally broken, I'm not sure if it's because publishers have this agenda that forces developers to rush their development or if it's some major issue with the hardware itself ( in terms of compatibility with the gaming engines ). I'm out of patience with this situation, there are games taking 7Gb or more of space of my HDD for the update patches, it's ridiculous, it's like if I had 2 whole games instead of one !

hatieshorrer
hatieshorrer

@fgjnfgh  

Your right while Nintendo 3DS is out saling every other console they are responding to haters.

Nintyfan95
Nintyfan95

I say they quit the home console hardware business, and focus on that exact same concept with the 3DS, and 9th generation handheld. 

silvergol
silvergol

@Jyakotu Nintendo Handhelds are extreme sucessful because there are 0 Competitors.

Morokoo
Morokoo

@starfox15 

I agree, they should really turn more attention to the Wii U while still taking care of the 3DS. They should keep their longtime popular titles going but I think they should also try some new series, which it looks like they are if they ever get released overseas.

nintendoboy16
nintendoboy16

@enoslives7 That comparison makes no sense. The GameCube was aging while the DS was brand spanking new at the time. Besides, we still hardly know d*** about the Wii U's future at this point.

YearoftheSnake5
YearoftheSnake5

@TooCoolForYou  

The Nintendo Direct was supposed to be focused on the 3DS. I suppose they're saving Wii U stuff for E3, which isn't too far off at this point.

Morokoo
Morokoo

@nintendoboy16 @Morokoo 

Wasn't. It's been doing very well recently, it has a ton of games that should appeal to a lot of people on it and they seem to be announcing more not yet released and more for releases in other regions every few days.

It's likely that it will start doing very well nearing the end of the year. God knows the new Pokémon is going to make them a ton of money.

Furwings
Furwings

@grove12345 @hatieshorrer @WingChopMasta Games sell consoles. Wait for E3. IF Nintendo doesn't have a spectacular showing this year, then fine, you could be right. BUT if they hit it out of the park with announcements for next-gen versions of Metroid, Zelda, Starfox, F-Zero, Mario Kart, Smash Bros and on and on. Trust me these games will move hardware.

Morokoo
Morokoo

@nintendoboy16 @Morokoo 

I didn't say it did, that's the reason why I said wasn't, past tense.

NO system does well at launch anymore if not ever, when they launch they have a good amount of games but most of them aren't ever appealing. I got a 3DS and played DS games on it until KH:DDD came out, and since then I have bought more 3DS games because they released more that interested me.