While I was attending WonderCon this year, I was fortunate enough to get hands-on experience on several games for the Nintendo 3DS. Keep in mind, these are just demos, and I will judge them as such.
Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition
Well, first up is the one that I know is already out. Again, this was the demo version, so not sure if it’s anything like the released version. If you’ve played the home console version, this is pretty much it on a smaller screen. I’m not kidding, I couldn’t tell the difference visually between this one and the one I played at home. Well, the 3D was a big difference. Before I continue, I must make a point that the deeper the the 3D, the more dead-on you must look at the screen so as to avoid the image splitting on you.
The 3D effect is amazing on this game, and with the new visual mode (which puts it over the shoulder of your fighter) it really helps sell the draw of this edition. The controls are essentially the ones you remember from the Super Nintendo. The touch screen has four moves set up, two special moves, the Super Combo, and the Ultra Combo. According to the Capcom rep on hand, this was to help with the button combos needed to do the higher level moves. Although you could probably spam these like crazy.
Resident Evil The Mercenaries 3D
Again, another game that looks just like it’s HD counterpart, and again from Capcom. Pay attention, folks. This is one of those game where the 3D is a marked improvement over the regular 2D. The aiming laser mechanic carried over from RE4 and RE5 is a lot easier to read with the 3D, so you always know where the gun is going to hit. The touch screen allows you to easily switch weapons and items without worrying about leaving yourself open, and then there’s the new FPS mode. Same controls, but through the first person. Not sure if that works with a survival horror franchise like Resident Evil but that depends on the player.
Green Lantern: Rise of the Manhunters 3DS
This one is an unexpected treat, since I wasn’t expecting this to be on display. Like many handheld superhero games, this one goes for the sidescroller approach. My time with this one was the least, but still, being able to jump and fly as Hal Jordan, using the touch screen to use constructs, it was pretty fun. Stay tuned for me to talk about the console version.
Kid Icarus: Uprising
One of Nintendo’s big boys finally comes out to play. This was an interesting one. You pick your weapon, and control Pit with the thumb pad, shoot/attack with the shoulder button, and use the stylus on the touch screen to aim the reticle. During the flight sections, the game feels pretty good. When it goes to the ground… that’s a different matter. You still control the same, but with the touch screen aiming feature being used to move the camera, it can make things a bit difficult. I will admit, my experience was a bit colored due to the extra weight put on the system due to Nintendo’s security lock. I’m sure the experience on my own 3DS (if I get one soon) will be better.
Legend Of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time
This is it, the big one, the one I’d buy this system for. The demo on hand covered Kokiri Village (from immediately after you get the sword and shield), through the Deku Tree and finally the showdown with the first boss. The cleaned up visuals are amazing, after years of playing this game with the N64 look (all jagged and squared), seeing Link and the old environments and foes looking all HD is amazing. The menus are all mapped to the bottom screen, allowing you to access your maps and switch weapons and items without pausing the game. The tilt sensor allows you to look and aim in first person. This is by far the best Zelda I’ve played, in the best set-up. And the 3D on this one is amazing. This, my friends, is the only reason you need to get one of these systems soon.
That’s it for my 3DS experience from WonderCon 2011, but watch this space, because I’m going to have quite a few more things to share from it soon.