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The Nintendo 2DS XL Is Still Worth Buying

by Danny Zepeda | December 2, 2018December 2, 2018 11:30 am PST

Over the past two years, Nintendo has been making a killing off the Nintendo Switch, NES Classic and SNES Classic. The three products revitalized Nintendo and brought it back from the dark abyss of the Wii U.

With all of the attention directed at those three products, one former flagship product has entered a forgotten state. That would be the New Nintendo 2DS XL, and though many don’t pay attention to it anymore, it is absolutely still worth buying.

It’s been seven years since the Nintendo 3DS launched and it is still going strong. That’s in part due to incremental upgrades over the years culminating in the introduction of the New Nintendo 2DS XL last year—a cheaper 3D-less version of the console that offers the same functionality.

The Nintendo 2DS XL retails for $150, half of what the Nintendo Switch costs. (The New Nintendo 3DS XL is still available for $200, but I wouldn’t recommend it.) This ensures there is a clear distinction between the two consoles even though they are both marketed as portable systems. The Switch is clearly the more powerful system, but the 2DS XL still has something very enticing to offer: an expansive game library of terrific titles.

Although the 3DS line dates back to 2011, the DS line dates back to 2004 and uses the same cartridges. That means there are 14 years of game development behind it.

There are thousands of games you can purchase at a very affordable price. At most they cost $40 through Nintendo’s eShop, but if you find used ones on eBay or Amazon, you can score games for as little as $10, including Mario Kart 7 and Super Smash Bros. 3D.

Other titles worth considering are Super Mario 3D Land, Metroid: Samus Returns, Bayonetta, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Pokemon Sun and Moon. Additionally, Nintendo is still not done pumping out new titles for the 3DS line. Most recently, it ported over the GameCube classic Luigi’s Mansion, providing a new way to relive the game.

While the NES Classic and SNES Classic provided a shot of nostalgia for many, the Virtual Console still exists on the 2DS XL, making it possible to play a ton of classic games on the handheld.

It might seem like it’s too late to get into the Nintendo 3DS ecosystem, but it’s not. If you pick one up, you’ll get a fantastic console that still holds up. It is no longer Nintendo’s marquee portable, but it still very much has a place in the gaming world today.

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Danny Zepeda

Born and raised in Southern California, Danny grew up on a steady diet Pixar, Star Wars and Steven Spielberg movies. Unbeknownst to him, this was...

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