The promised firmware arrived during the evening of December 6th for the Nintendo 3DS. The update took a few minutes to install and reboot the system. The changes are mostly renovations and additions to pre-installed software. The camera shoots video now, the Mii Plaza has been enhanced, there is a new channel, the Nintendo Zone, and 3DS to 3DS software and data transfers are supported.
The video supports stop-motion clips, as well as regular filming. There are some limited “editing” features for the videos, but they are limited to changing the speed and pitch of the audio within the clip.
The Nintendo Zone is a new channel automatically installed during the update. Comparable to the Nintendo Channel on the Wii, this is where demos and previews for games can be played and viewed. I’m not sure why this channel was needed,however. It seems to me the major features of this channel are redundant to the eShop channel and Video channel.
Up to now, the only transfers supported were between a DSi and 3DS. Now as more colors and editions are being released, you can now transfer your purchased software and save data to your shiny new Zelda or Rose 3DS.
The biggest overhaul came with the Mii Plaza however. An achievement system was implemented related to the depth and breadth of your interactions with other Mii’s and the quality and quantity of play with the included games. For those who collected every hat in the mini-RPG “Find Me” there is a new Find Mii game.
Each update and feature added or enhanced shows me Nintendo’s commitment to this hand-held. Value added features make early 3DS more and more attractive to the public. The window for the yet to be announced/released GBA games for the 3DS Ambassadors is getting slimmer and slimmer. But Nintendo assures us the 10 GBA games will be out by the end of the year. I did notice the eShop was closed for maintenance this evening. Hopefully that is a good sign.
Now, to steal my son’s Legos and action figures and make some 3D stop motion movies…for the kids, of course.