The DS XL: Pretty much just a DSi that’s let itself go.

When the Nintendo DS first came out, I was very excited. “Oh. A new Nintendo handheld. I just HAVE to buy that.” And I bought it, and all was well.

Back in my day...You could crush a baby seal with this thing.

Then the Lite came out. “Well, the DS is kinda huge, and brighter backlighting never hurt anyone. I guess I should buy that.” And I bought it, and all was, well, good enough.

Then the DSi came out, and it had a camera. After it had been out several months, I gave in. “Well, it has a camera, and… er… screw it. Might as well.” So I bought it. And all was kinda sorta lame.

Now, only a few months after I bought the DSi, I get wind of the DS XL.

Okay, now I’m pissed.

So let me get this straight. It’s bigger and….

Wait, that’s it?

That’s all? It’s bigger? It has a bigger case, bigger screen, and bigger pen, and this merits being it’s own handheld? I could see releasing this as new hardware if it also came with 3G, a taser, and games I could enjoy without either being senile or 5 years old, but apparently Nintendo thinks so little of us that they believe releasing new hardware and saying, “Hey look! Something new that Nintendo made! It’s an improvement! Honest!” will make us spasm at the thought of buying a DS XL. I am certain that the only reason this travesty is being released is that Nintendo is relying on it’s loyal fanbase to buy anything and everything they release. Another release = another influx of cash, no matter how worthless the release.

Nintendo's Legion of Fanboys will buy anything and everything from Nintendo.Nintendo’s Legion of Fanboys will buy anything Nintendo.

I mean, the whole point of the DS Lite was that it was smaller then the gargantuan DS. However, it also had a screen size upgrade and a screen brightness upgrade, and the sheer awkwardness of the brick-like DS made a smaller version very attractive. This new one is bigger then the original DS. That is beyond coming full circle. That’s more like shooting the circle in the face and coming full panda. I am beginning to fear the for the future of Nintendo’s handheld system. Are they just going to get bigger? Will they ever make an actual improvement in screen resolution or picture quality, maybe something to rival the PSP? Or maybe a new feature, like streaming movies from Netflix (because you could TOTALLY pull that off with today’s 3G network…) or something like that? Or will they simply increase in screen size until you might as well be hauling around a laptop?

Hkg2905240This thing will eat your children.

Honestly, if this trend doesn’t change, I am going to have to do something I never thought I would do. Being an Xbox fanboy, me and everything PlayStation haven’t gotten along since the PS1. But I might actually move to the PSP, with better graphics, more games marketed towards people who play something other then casual games, and homebrew goodies, I feel that I would get more out of Half Minute Hero and Little Big Planet then I do out of Diner Dash and the laughably gimmicky Scriblenauts.

Nintendo claims it has a reason for this money-grubbing hardware “upgrade.” Apparently, this size bump is for old people, who’s knobbly, arthritic phalanges are too weak and useless to grasp a normal stylus or DS, and who’s glaucoma-ridden eyes can’t make out the cartoonish figures on the screen unless the screen is inflated like a fat kid at an all-you-can-eat buffet.

Y’know what, no. Nintendo is not going to release a whole new DS just for the elderly. That is nowhere near a large enough market. I call BS on this. I’m sorry Nintendo, but fail. FAIL HARD.

I wonder how big DS’s will get?


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  • Hehe…taser.

  • ROFLMAO! Fantastic article. Can’t wait to see the Nintendo fanboys come out and defend it. LOL.

  • Great read! I’m happy with my DS Lite, I have no desire to upgrade it, partly because if I want to play games I play on my consoles, and if I’m in the mood for handheld games, I go to my iPhone, quite possibly the best handheld on the market.

  • Jennifer Kye

    Oh man, I couldn’t stop giggling through parts of the article. Nintendo just generates cash and assumes this will be another addition to their cash cow.

  • Ha ha great article!

  • ooo where’s B4? he going come after you! but great article! going have to get used to new versions of things being released though. we have the PS3 slim and PSPGo now and sure if MS could they would make a 360slim.
    cant wait to see what you have issues with next.

  • mik

    You’re pissed because your current DSi is not rendered obsolete by this alternate version of the hardware–so you don’t need to lay out any cash for a new system?


    • Scott Bullock

      I’m pissed that Nintendo refuses to do anything new with the platform other then inflate it. I’m pissed that they refuse to make games that I want to play. Long story short, I’m sick of Nintendo.


  • 101010

    The point of the DSi LL/XL is to target older gamers that don’t like squinting at a tiny screen. It’s part of their ongoing “blue ocean” scheme to get everybody on the planet playing games. That’s why it comes in more muted, “respectable” colors and why it comes with brain training games built in. I’m only 32 but it’s so hard on my eyes playing my son’s DSi that I’m missing out on a lot of good games. Playing on the current version for any length of time is just not an option. I can’t wait to buy one, but again, it’s mostly an age thing. Holding a DSi kinda sucks too if you have big hands. If you’re not uncomfortable playing the one you’ve got, this isn’t really targeted at you. I have a lot of issues with the way Nintendo is operating these days but this is one decision I applaud.

    • nagaidevil

      Agreed! Very Good points! Its not about getting EVERYONE that has a dsi to upgrade (although nintendo would never complain about that) Its all about options. Think of how ridiculous an article would be complaining that there are different sized TVs on the market. That would be moronic, different people have different wants and needs and a good company will do their best to appeal to as many people possible. Some want portability, they’ll buy the standard dsi, and some want a larger screen and will sacrifice portability for it, and these people will buy the XL its that simple. This Article=Epic Fail

  • skull

    Well, the PSP always was a monster by itself. And with GO, it got even larger and bulkier. Now the DS is a tad bigger and here comes the haters. This article kinda smells of Nintendo hate.

    And it’s not like Nintendo is putting a knife against your neck to buy it (like making later DS versions obsolete – unlike, again, the PSP).

  • Katrus

    Well, the idea is supposed to be that it’s for grandmothers that can’t see all that well to play Brain Age and Professor Layton.

    Personally, I’m happy with my DS lite, and will be until the rumoured DS2 comes out.

  • To be fair, it seems like you are not the target audience. From what I have heard, there are a lot of older people playing the DS but they find the small screen and buttons difficult to operate, so Nintendo made a large version with a bigger screen and bigger buttons just for them.

  • My mom has a DSi and she does get annoyed at the small size. I know what I’m getting her for her birthday!