Nintendo DS

We bought a blue Nintendo DS. I haven’t been terribly excited about it before, but I am a satisfied customer, now. The plastic looks and feels a little cheap, it’s not very ergonomic, it’s really quite large and the second screen feels gimmicky. Nevertheless, the whole package does work. And buying one of the colored versions also makes it look a lot better. Personally, I would’ve preferred the pink one, but my wife wouldn’t accept it.

I’ve known a long time that I must get a Nintendo handheld. We’ve been thinking about the Gameboy Advance SP, but the DS is newer and it plays the GBA games. What really landed the deal, for us, was Animal Crossing: Wild World. We both played AC on the Gamecube a lot, and this is simply a better version of the same vision. There is one problem, though: the controls feel a little awkward. I don’t know if it’s because I’m left-handed or what, but I can’t find a satisfactory method to control AC for an extended period. Then again, it really is best in frequent but short sessions. The upper screen is almost useless. I think Wild World is the only game, to date, which I’ve bought on release.

In addition to Animal Crossing, I really wanted Advance Wars: Dual Strike. It kicks butt. I appreciate the challenge: I’ve already had to yield one mission and I haven’t been getting straight S grades. It does some interesting things with the upper screen, but mostly it’s redundant. The touch interface works fine, though you don’t need it.

Games I’m looking forward to on the DS include the new Pokémon (Diamond/Pearl), the new handheld Zelda (Phantom Hourglass), New Mario Bros, Zookeeper and some Castlevania. Yes, mostly updates to previous GBA successes, but hey, whatever.

I haven’t got around to checking out the Wifi abilities of the console yet, so more on that some other time. Looking forward to head-to-head Advance Wars. And crossing animals, of course! Imagine the babies of today: they won’t recognize a cable when they grow up. Yes, we used need those on our controllers. Yes, they maimed people, lying around in livingrooms, creating deathtraps and unsolvable knots.

In geek-related news, they rolled out the new Coca-Cola Light. It’s okay. I did prefer the old one. I would’ve loved to post a link to a cool Coke site, but disappointingly Coca-cola.com ain’t worth a visit.


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