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This review is from: Nintendo DS Lite Cobalt / Black
The Nintendo DS. What more could one say? I'm going to try and rate this as objectively as possible. First off, this is by no means an adult gaming device. Anyone who is upset because it does not have TV out HD capabilities is playing with the wrong toy. You have to look at this product as it were geared towards children and the younger crowd. Many adults who purchase the DS feel that they have been ripped off. Well that's just the thing. Like I said, one has to see this as a youth oriented device.
Anyways, now that we've cleared that up let talk about the DS itself.
Graphics: Not great and it definitely would not be able to compete with the PSP, but If I remember correctly Edge magazine's top 100 games off all time features more games from the 2D era than anything else. Actually, out of the top ten 4 were 2 dimensional and the number 3 and 1 spot went to Mario 64 and Ocarina of time. Both these games were some of the first in the 3D world. So looking at it from that perspective, I'd say that graphics are outweighed by game play presentation and storyline. Plus new Super Mario bros is just plain goodness in a cartridge.
Gameplay: Lets talk about Mario 64... The original Mario 64 relied heavily on the N64's analog joystick, so Mario 64 DS gives you a few different control options that attempt to emulate the control in different ways. By default, the game is configured to let you play without using the system's touch screen. The D pad is used for movement, and the buttons are used for jumping, ducking, attacking, and running. While you can also use the touch screen for running, the other two control modes are somewhat better suited for use with the touch screen, letting you shuffle the buttons around a bit to give you more control over your character. I think the methods incorporated for movement in this game are superb and could not have been mapped much better. This seems to go for all games. Most games that require the use of the touchpad and stylist are focus more on tactical elements rather than speed, which results in a more enjoyable game experience if you're not too quick with the stick. One issue I did encounter was after the touch screen got a bit scratched up it was not as sensitive. Plus those little stylists are so easy to loose.
Price: Can't beat it. Can be found for under 100 dollars if you shop around. You're not going to find a cheaper way to entertain yourself on the go. The games are not too expensive either. Although, 30 bucks is pretty steep for anyone under 12.
Feature set: I'd say for something as simple as a "Gameboy" it has a lot to offer. It has Wifi which can be a lot of fun with friends. Try playing Mario kart with 7 other people on their DS's and you'll know what I mean.
Also the chat feature is neat if you have friends that have DS's as well.
And a big bonus is the backwards compatibility with GBA games. There is a little cartridge spot to put old games in. Some of my favorite Mario games are still playable on the go cause of this.
Other than that there are not a lot of features. But I wouldn't expect it to. Like I said before, If you're looking for a portable media center this is not it. The DS is a fun handheld (strictly related to gaming) that can keep you entertained for hours on end.