The Nintendo 3DS will live on, even if the handheld console was entirely overshadowed by the Nintendo Switch at E3 2019.
New Nintendo of America president Doug Bowser — who landed the top job in April, when beloved CEO Reggie Fils-Aime retired — reiterated that the company will continue to support the 3DS. In an interview with Time, Boswer said the focus at E3 2019 was on the Nintendo Switch, and that the company had no new Nintendo 3DS games to announce at the annual video game event. But that doesn’t mean Nintendo is pulling the plug on the handheld console.
The Nintendo 3DS business “continues to do quite well,” Bowser said, stating that as long as there is consumer demand, the company will continue supporting the device. Retailers also continue to sell hardware and software for the 3DS system, likely sharing Bowser’s sentiment that the console is “a great entry point for young gamers.”
“A 3DS at $ 79 with a game included is a great value proposition for a young gamer coming into the Nintendo ecosystem,” said Bowser.
Nintendo’s renewal of its commitment to the 3DS echoes the company’s stance from last year’s E3, when then-president of Nintendo of America Reggie Fils-Aime said that the company has no plans of phasing out the handheld console.
Fils-Aime said at the time that new games were coming to the handheld console, but in a financial briefing by the company in April, the device was not even mentioned, with no new game announcements. A spokesperson clarified that there were no first-party games in the pipeline for the 3DS, with software coming instead from third-party publishers.
Kirby’s Extra Epic Yarn was the last first-party game launched for the handheld console, and the last significant release was Persona Q2: New Cinema Labyrinth. It remains to be seen how long interest in the console will hold, when there is so far nothing laid out for its future.
The Nintendo 3DS has an extensive collection of knockout games, of course, reason enough for both new and old players to keep picking up the console. The Nintendo Switch may have the spotlight, but it looks like the 3DS is not sinking into the shadows, at least for now.