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Nintendo Portables (Games) Games

Nintendo Downplays Reports of 3DS Flaws 65

RedEaredSlider writes "Shorty after the US launch of Nintendo's last portable console, 3DS owners have begun reporting issues with the device. In one case, dubbed the 'black screen of death,' users reported instances where their 3DS screens grew black shortly before their consoles became unresponsive. Other owners documented errors involving a screen instructing them to restart their systems. Nintendo has taken notice of the issues, and offered 3DS users a fix for the error. 'If anyone is experiencing any problems with their Nintendo 3DS console, we recommend that in the first instance they download and install the latest system update, now available online,' the company said in a statement." The 3DS's launch was reportedly more successful than the DSi's. iFixit did a nice teardown of the device a while back, and Nukezilla's Peter Silk put the screen under a microscope.
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Nintendo Downplays Reports of 3DS Flaws

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  • PEBDAC? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Buggz ( 1187173 ) on Thursday March 31, 2011 @04:35AM (#35675746)

    users reported instances where their 3DS screens grew black shortly before their consoles became unresponsive

    That happens to me all the time. Then I charge the battery.

    • users reported instances where their 3DS screens grew black shortly before their consoles became unresponsive

      That happens to me all the time. Then I charge the battery.

      Sega lost the handheld race to Nintendo because Game Gear's battery life was far inferior to that of Game Boy. Sony lost the same way when the first PSP's battery didn't meet expectations that the GBA SP and the DS had built up. Reports are that the 3DS is the next Game Gear in this respect.

  • Downplays? (Score:4, Informative)

    by damnbunni ( 1215350 ) on Thursday March 31, 2011 @04:44AM (#35675778) Journal

    Er, they released a firmware update to fix the software issue, and while they did say they haven't gotten all that many complaints about the hinges, they do appear to be fixing/replacing them for people with a bad hinge.

    'Downplays' may be putting it a bit too strongly.

    • Re:Downplays? (Score:4, Informative)

      by dunezone ( 899268 ) on Thursday March 31, 2011 @08:10AM (#35676658) Journal
      Nintendo has probably the best customer service of all three major players in the console market. They were still repairing the NES up until about 5 years ago. I read a story where one guy called up their support but since he only lived 5 minutes from their corporate HQ he convinced them to have him come bring his dead Wii and they repaired it.
      • Nintendo has probably the best customer service of all three major players in the console market

        This is true up to the point when a customer becomes more than a customer. When a customer wants to step up to making games or at least mods, Microsoft has that market cornered with App Hub and Xbox Live Indie Games. Nintendo has only WarioWare DIY, which some critics have called too little too late.

    • by brkello ( 642429 )

      Amusing. If a Microsoft handheld was doing this, all you guys would be tearing them apart and singing the praises of your DS. Instead of attacking Nintendo, you complain that "downplays" is too harsh a word. If this happened to Sony or MS, they would be fixing/replacing as well.

  • by RogueyWon ( 735973 ) * on Thursday March 31, 2011 @04:53AM (#35675822) Journal

    I picked up my 3DS at UK launch on Friday. So far, I've had a single black-screen (which happened on quitting a game), which isn't a major irritation. The hinges, however, are very, very loose - if the thing isn't in the "full open" position, it tends to either flop towards that or to flop closed. Other than that, it feels like a fairly nice piece of kit, rather than the "plastic toy" feel you got from the DS.

    The biggest problem for me has been headaches associated with even the mildest 3d settings. I've made a more detailed post about that (and other experiences with the machine more generally) in my journal, though it may be a bit on the tl;dr side.

    Obviously, turning the 3d off solves this problem, but that does leave you with a machine that is basically an expensive and slightly underpowered PSP with a touchscreen.

    • I picked up my 3DS Sunday morning. My particular kit is very sturdy--including the hinge. A friend who bought his at the same time has had a minor issue with his hinge, though; basically with the same complaint the parent describes. He picked up the the black unit while I got the cobalt. I wonder if anyone has found any correlation between the color of the systems and hinge problems?

      I have also experienced the black screen of death 3 times. One of those was after the firmware update. However, every
    • by Cinder6 ( 894572 )

      I, sadly, had a similar headache experience. One of my students showed me his new 3DS yesterday, and I got to try it out for all of 5 seconds. The 3D effect looked pretty nice (not as strong as a TV with glasses, but I'm not sure what intensity he had it set to), but I got a headache even in that short a time, and then my eyes wouldn't focus properly for about 10 seconds. I experience a similar phenomenon with other 3D stuff (except for, oddly enough, the Virtual Boy), but never that quickly. I'll pick

  • Ah, plenty of options for jailbreaking then... ^_^
    • Black screen of quick reset actually, still a pain but nothing like PC-death or Xbox-death
  • Sony Ericsson is trying to launch the Xperia Play gaming-phone-combo-doohickey in the UK without (m)any devices (stuck in shipping or some such). Three of the biggest mobile chains already delayed - not a great start: http://psp2roundup.blogspot.com/2011/03/xperia-play-launch-round-up.html [blogspot.com]
  • Granted, the first thing I did when I took it out of the box was update it, so perhaps that's why.
  • I tried the 3DS at the store yesterday. I kept seeing 1.5 of everything no matter where I positioned my head. And my eyes began to hurt. For brief moment the screen did look deeper, but... so what?

    I also crashed my plane into a tree.
    • by Buggz ( 1187173 )
      You're not supposed to position your head, keep your head "perfectly" in front of the 3DS (side movement will keep the directional light from hitting your respective eyes). You are however supposed to use the slider to adjust the 3D effect until you find the sweet spot.
  • I've actually used the 3DS for multiple days in a row now and all of these problems haven't occurred to me. As long as you install the online firmware upgrade (which might later be included out-of-the-box) you don't get those errors, and many of the build quality errors with 3DSs are, as always, just vocal minorities. Is it really that hard, even for people that don't have Wi-Fi at their home, to download a simple firmware upgrade? There's libraries, restaurants and such all over the place with Wi-Fi that y

    • A lot of the complaints are because the device really doesn't seem like the device Nintendo woudl have normally shipped if it could help it. The price is way higher than any previous handheld from them, the battery life lower, several features like a single analog stick and resistive touch are outdated. Power wise, the resolution is quite low, and the hardware is outclassed by pretty much all their competition. Nintendo seems to be betting that 3d makes up for all that, and people are rightly critical of
      • The price is way higher than any previous handheld from them

        Without inflation taken into account. Even still, I'd expect a handheld with graphics supposedly better than the Wii, a gyroscope, two cameras (one of which is two lenses used for a 3D effect), 3D support, a touchscreen, and all of the software included with the handheld itself (there are tons of easter eggs if you look for them) to be at least the price of a Wii. The price will go down with time, of course. I think that, at launch, something as versatile as a 3DS deserves that price point (which also sets

      • by tgibbs ( 83782 )

        Hardware outclassed?
        Dual displays, touch and glasses-free 3D; accelerometer; 3D camera.
        Which competitor even comes close to matching those hardware features?

    • I want to buy one and love it, but I can't afford it and I'm pretty certain the 3D would bother my eyes for anything other than very short stints. Plus, I jumped on the DS bandwagon a few months after the Lite was released, and by that time there were a lot of great games for the system. I think I'll do the same here: wait for a hardware revision/price drop ($180 plz) and a decent library.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    The fix for many of the black screens is to reformat the included SD card with FAT32. 3DS games and the system actually use the SD card pretty frequently, and I don't think whatever mechanism that formatted and shoved SD cards into the slots on the assembly line did a thorough job or something.

  • It looked like this [wikipedia.org]. Same issues with loose parts and headaches.

  • It's too bad we never see actual numbers on things like this. I haven't encountered either black screens or headaches while using the 3DS. I'd be curious to know what percentage of users have them, but all there is to go on right now is the "some people on the internet" metric.
  • by Karl J. Smith ( 184 ) * <karl@onetruekarl.com> on Thursday March 31, 2011 @02:17PM (#35680286) Homepage

    The first thing I did was update the firmware it when I got it on Sunday so that I could see the "OK Go" video. I never saw the "bsod" requesting that you power off and on again until yesterday when I was playing Ghost: Recon for the first time. I just saw it again today, also while playing Ghost:Recon. The exact wording is "An error has occurred. Hold down the POWER button to turn off the power, then turn it on and try again. For help, visit support.nintendo.com."

    I just looked for another update, and there is none.

    So the issue still exists with all current patches applied, and seems to show up in Ghost:Recon, at least for me.

    • The one time I BSoD'd was also with Ghost Recon, but for me before the update. May be an issue with the way that game is programmed. Or, perhaps more cases are happening with it because that game is popular; it was noted as the 3rd best selling 3DS title this week on Gamasutra.

      I suspect with all the shenanigans the console is trying to do at once (rendering effectively 3 screens, game logic running in the background, pedometer, checking online for updates and notifications, transferring streetpass info) it'

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