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Nintendo 3DS reborn as New 3DS: What you need to know

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Nintendo has just announced the newest versions of its 3DS handheld mobile gaming console.

The devices, which the company imaginatively named as the "New Nintendo 3DS" and "New Nintendo 3DS XL"  represents a minor upgrade for the mobile console line.

In a Nintendo 3DS Direct video post, the company showed off the new hardware running upcoming video games such as Final Fantasy Explorers. The New Nintendo 3DS has been fitted with a number of improvements, most notably a faster processor and the ability to more easily handle 3D effects. Nintendo did not specify what kind of processor is in the device. However, it said the console will have more processing muscle than its predecessor.  

The processor upgrade means that the device can handle exclusive games such as Xenoblade Chronicles. The New Nintendo 3DS and 3DS XL can still handle older games for the 3DS and DS systems. However, that doesn't go both ways. Since games for the new console would require more processing power, it cannot be played on older systems.

The design for the new 3DS line recalls older Nintendo gaming hardware. The brightly colored face buttons are similar to the company's SNES consoles from the '90s. Just above the buttons, there is now an analog nub called a "C-Stick," which is similar to the one on the Nintendo GameCube from about 12 years ago. The redesign has also endowed the device with two more trigger buttons. The ZR and ZL button is meant to be used in tandem with the analog stick.

Nintendo has included NFC support for the device for pairing with Amiibo figurines. Super Smash Bros., which comes out on September 13, will be released about a month before the new console's October 11 launch date in Japan. The four-player fighting game will be one of the first with NFC support.    

"We have a variety of compelling portable gaming options for customers now and through the Christmas shopping season, including a variety of different Nintendo 2DS and Nintendo 3DS XL bundles at retail. We also have a strong library of hundreds of games for these systems that appeal to all kinds of players, with titles like Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS, Pokemon Omega Ruby and Pokemon Alpha Sapphire still on the way before the end of the year," a company spokesperson told Eurogamer. 

In other words, if you're outside of Japan, you'll have to wait until after the holidays. Nintendo said that the New 3DS and 3DS XL, which will cost 16,000 yen ($154) and 18,800 yen ($181), will not come out in Europe and the United States this year.

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