Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Nintendo DSi hands-on impressions

Hey everyone, sorry for the delay (despite it actually being a shorter wait than I had thought) but my DSi finally arrived today at six o'clock. Apparently a package can sit in a UPS truck for 13 hours before you get it, even though the shipping plant is just 15 min away... Anyways let's open up with some pictures I added to Flickr:

NintendoDSi_01 NintendoDSi_02 NintendoDSi_03 NintendoDSi_04
Sorry for no DS lite in the comparison shots, but I don't have one.

Quick note about the no DS lite, the video feature I have planned in the coming week will be about convincing early adopters of the original DS who didn't upgrade to the DS lite to finally take a step up; because I know I wasn't the only one out there in that situation.

For me, the first thing I noticed, other than the weird yet surprisingly comfortable matte finish, was the screens. Not only are they noticeably larger by comparison, but they're significantly brighter (but I again can't speak for the DS lite), and have less of a glare; heck the touch screen doesn't even get all those lines on it from the stylus. Speaking of the stylus, I was leary at first going from the tiny DS stylus that I was oh so used to the DSi's new, larger stylus. However, after a few run throughs with the DSi's various appilications I found it to be more comfortable, and well... better; I just have to get used to its placement in the system.

While the screens are bigger, the resolution stays the same, which I don't think makes a huge difference. However, while playing Mario Kart DS, the menus looked more jagged to me, though I can't really put the blame on the image being stretched, or if it's just the fact that it may of always looked that way and it only took the bright screen of the DSi for me to actually notice it.

App-wise, I purchased WarioWare: Snapped!(yet to play it) and the DSi Brower (Free) with the 1000 points Nintendo gives with every DSi. On my wifi, the downloads were much quicker than I expected, and I was able to get two downloads quicker than I have an NES game on the Wii Shop Channel. The browser is actually quite nice, though I'll the spare details until the actual review. As for what comes with the system, I played around with the camera, which was fun to an extent, but I had issues with some of the color filters due to my lighting. The Nintendo DSi Sound .. channel?.. was actually pretty fun; it was neat to be able hear my favorite songs and play around with it to make Eddie Vedder sound like Satan himself, or to twist and warp my own voice; not to mention, some of those music visualizer are neat (especially the Excitebike and Mario ones).

Lastly.. what else can I say? I've only had an hour or so to play around with the system because it arrived late, and I wanted to get the battery drained before I got into any serious gameplay (so yes, it is still charging). I also was able to transfer my Nintendo WiFi Connection stats from my old DS to my DSi in a procedure that was actually quite simple and easy, just incase you don't want to wory about remembering all new friend codes.

If there's anything I wish the DSi did have, other than say GBA support (though I can live without, being I have every GBA model) is I wish there was more networking to it. Like, why can't I have DSi friends like I do Wii friends, and have the ability to share photos and sound clips? Or even better, have the ability to share and recieve with Wii consoles? I mean, i'm sure it is possible with a firmware upgrade on both ends, but it's something I'd of liked to seen out of the box.

Other than that, if you still have an original DS, I'd say it's about time to upgrade, at least for the new hardware features like the internal memory, SD/SDHC support, cameras, and improved screens/speakers. But if you're a GBA purist, I wouldn't get rid of the old DS if you don't have any other way to play those games; I would get the DSi to supplement your gaming experience. My hope really comes down to the DSi Shop, if there's games there that you can't find anywhere else, than that will have to be your selling point, especially when the DSi sells for $170, while the still GBA compatible, yet extra feature-less DS lite runs for $130.

Hope this helps your purchase decisions!

No comments: