3DS Ambassador titles and more arrive this week!
Another Wednesday in Japan means an update for the eShop. This week, unexpectedly, gamers are now able to access all ten of their well earned Ambassador titles. Oh yeah, and of course, here is what was released this week on the eShop for everyone:
3DS Downloadable Titles
Nikori no Puzzle Nurikabe - 500 yen
Zoid Densetsu (Zoids Legend) - 400 yen
Apart from the usual shenanigans that are Itsu no Ma ni Terebi and Nintendo Video, there have been some updates that are actually worth talking about this week. The first of which is about a new video series that is currently available on Itsu no Ma ni Terebi. It's called, “Tohoku 2011 Tamashi no Matsuri Egao de Naku" (Spirit of the Tohoku 2011 Festival: The Smile in the Tears) and it focuses on various festivals that are being held in the Tohoku region. The video series is only available for a limited time. Until September 6 to be exact, when the previous series, Dobutsu de Calendar (a series showing off a variety of animals at zoos or in a special animal play room) makes it's return. In the meantime, 3DS owners in Japan can enjoy this new gem and see what summer festivals in Japan are like up close in personal.
Another awesome update came from Nintendo Video. While most of the other content that has been coming as of late (OK Go, and the fashion model shows) have been underwhelming, Nintendo went back to something from the beginning of the service in Japan that I enjoyed quite a bit – Fura Fura Machi Aruki Kyoto (Tottering Around Kyoto). This five minute long episode's focus is on Kyou Onna, or the Women of Kyoto. The first part of the video focuses on a woman who is dressed in a beautiful kimono making her rounds for the day. Seeing the elegant style of her kimono mixed with her graceful movements and speech with the backdrop of a modern day Kyoto is quite a treat, and is becoming rarer and rarer in Japan. Afterward, the video crew happens upon a female rickshaw operator, an amazingly dressed couple at a temple, and three kimono-wearing maidens around a popular drinking area in city during the evening.
Although Zoids was extremely tempting (that's me being sarcastic, no offense to you Zoid maniacs out there!), I have spent quite a bit of time with a few of the newly released 3DS Famicom Ambassador titles. For those of you living in a hole for the past few weeks, you probably know that gamers who purchased their 3DS before August 11 in Japan (August 12 elsewhere) that they'll be members of the 3DS Ambassador program, entitling them to free software downloads on their 3DSes this September and before the end of the year. The first wave of games are Famicom titles, and here's what ambassadors get in Japan: Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, Ice Climber, Donkey Kong Jr., Balloon Fight, Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, Wrecking Crew, Yoshi no Tamago (Yoshi's Egg), Metroid, and Mario Open Golf. On the 3DS menu, the games are listed as Virtual Console games and feature a white and red block – the colors of the Famicom.
I played the original Legend of Zelda briefly, but put a lot more time into Super Mario Bros. One thing to note is that these are definitely the original Famicom versions of the titles being emulated on the 3DS. The games themselves are presented pretty closely (if not exactly) in the correct aspect ratio, cutting off the sides similarl to the Game Boy Virtual Console games available. Games are able to suspend their games (a la the Wii), but do not have the ability to utilize fully saved states as they do with Game Boy Virtual Console games. Playing the original Super Mario Bros. Isn't something new to me, as I own both the Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance versions of the classic. This version, by far is the most polished, as it is perfectly emulated without a hitch. Controls, on the other hand, can feel a little cramped, but having Mario on the go (without an additional cartridge in my pocket) is ideal. Some of the other titles, such as Zelda, Metroid, and Zelda II can benefit from the pick up and play style that you have with the 3DS, suspending where you are to forgo the need to save.