With the success of Avatar and other similar projects, 3D has recently exploded back into the public consciousness and is no longer regarded only as a distant gimmick from 70s drive-ins, but as a gimmick from the theaters of today. Putting on the glasses to see the 3D version of a film at the theater is fine, but manufacturers seem to think that people will want to do the same thing at home. Ah yes, I can see it now. The whole family gathered in the living room, wearing $150 battery-powered 3D glasses, fighting for the one spot on the couch where the 3D looks best. If only someone could figure out how to get 3D to work without those ridiculous glasses.
Enter Nintendo, Electronic Entertainment Expo 2010. The Nintendo 3DS is revealed appearing much like its predecessor featuring two screens, the bottom one being a touch screen. Except the 3DS’s top screen boasts stereoscopic 3D that works without glasses. Every person who tries it makes a face like this:
In addition to a 3D top screen, Nintendo threw in motion and gyro sensors and a 3D camera among other things. This lets game developers do some pretty awesome stuff like augmented-reality where game elements appear to be interacting with whatever you see through the 3D camera. Games like Face Raiders take advantage of the motion and gyro sensors so that you have to physically aim the camera around to play.
All of this really really cool tech stuff aside, the 3DS is launching with a good mix of games, all of which still pale in comparison to the glory of the 3D remake of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. If you don’t know what that is or why it’s such a big deal, just imagine the best game ever, and then make it even better. It’s reason enough for me to throw hand-fulls of money at Nintendo until I have one of these things in my hands. This is the face I will make once I do:
As usual I have digressed and the topic has somehow changed to video games. Bringing all this back to 3D: If you’re going to buy into the whole 3D TV in the living room thing, you should wait until someone takes what Nintendo did on a small screen and puts it in a nice 40” LED. Maybe Nintendo will make their own 3D TVs? Who Knows!? Until then: