Nintendo DS dual-screen portable game system debuts

Billy Drown

Billy Drown

Nintendo’s new dual-screened handheld game system launches this week.

Too bad Sony couldn’t get out their handheld, PSP, now as well. It would’ve been great to see the two compete.

The upper screen is where most of the action takes place. The bottom screen has a touch pad on it for the stylus pen. It will be interesting to see what concepts game publishers come up with to bring the best out of the stylus pen.

There will be only a handful of new games released for the DS. Leading the charge is a Super Mario 64 DS, a rehashing of the brilliant Super Mario 64. Another unique DS game is Sega’s bizarre Feel the Magic: XX/XY, which should delight gamers with all of the mini-games tangled in a love story/adventure-type game play.

If the lack of launch games scares you away from the DS, remember that the DS is backwards-compatible — it can run all the games the Advance could. But that compatibilty means most people will probably stop buying the Advance in favor of the DS.

Nintendo will probably be raking in a lot of greenies with the DS over this holiday season, but once the more powerful Sony PSP is released in 2005, things could change.

It would almost seem odd for someone else besides Nintendo to reign on top in the handheld market but it could happen. But for now the only other handheld that the DS will have to compete against is Nintendo’s own Game Boy Advance. I could count Nokia’s N-Gage, but the N-Gage was a failure from the start because of its poor design and lack of decent games.

Will the DS deliver what video gamers have come to expect from Nintendo’s handheld offerings? Or will the DS be an oddity and a failure, dragging Nintendo from its high peak and letting Sony rest comfortable on top of the handheld market? Only time will tell.

#1.885570:1951128386.jpg:nintendo ds.jpg::