Wednesday, September 7

3DS Ambassador Program fails to ease tension with early adopters

I concede that I'm making an assumption with the headline: I'm sure that there are some who are happy with the first batch of downloadable freebies that Nintendo has thrown to those who purchased a 3DS before August 12. The list started off promisingly enough: Super Mario Bros, The Legend of Zelda and Ice Climbers were some of the first revealed in the lead up to the system's unprecedented - though arguably necessary - price drop. Then days before the program was set to launch, I was slapped with the rest of them.
Wrecking Crew, NES Open Golf, Mario & Yoshi...... how do these "classics" make up for the failed launch of the 3DS? They don't; and don't think that this was Nintendo's only jab at their loyal consumer base before all was said and downloaded.
Time has not been kind to this mediocre puzzler
The selection of titles was underwhelming, but I still had to download them before I could have a proper moan. Directions appeared on a great many gaming sites with some inconsistencies mixed in to make matters worse. Before I knew it, some even started claiming that the titles were live (to be fair, most of these were US sites and PAL territories have oft been known to get the short end of the stick). I clumsily opened my dusty portable and connected to the eShop, only to find that my nostalgia fix would go wanting. It didn't matter whose instructions I followed: no luck. It was September 1, where were my free games? It was September 1 here in Australia, but not in other territories: why were these lucky bastards indulging before I could!?
Later that night they finally appeared, but anticipation was to be replaced with frustration. After fumbling through the menus to start each download, I would then be ejected to the main menu after each game was received. I had to go through this process more than ten times so I could get my Ambassador Certificate as well. This was the thanks I got for spending an extra hundred dollars and enduring the worst console launch lineup in history? Please, allow me to raise my middle finger and aim it square at Nintendo.

While Super Mario Bros has aged immaculately, the truth is, not one of the other nine peace offerings is worth loading up (I should clarify that I am not a Zelda fan and still believe that Ocarina of Time is the most overrated game of all time). Worse yet, these emulations do not allow for use of the "Restore Point" feature that allow you to save and load games (and thus, repeat frustrating sections of play) on a whim. This is not what I signed up for!
This is not enough to buy my silence!
Worst of all was the revelation that the to-be-released Game Boy Advance reparations would receive even less support in terms of emulation. Forget about Restore Points: you can't even put the system to sleep when playing these games. Close the lid and nothing will happen. Who at Nintendo thought that this stripped-down compensation would appease anyone? It turns out that there is a reason that these GBA games won't be released to the general public: you'd be foolish to pay for them!
It's been months since I purchased a game on the 3DS, and Nintendo's half-assed attempt at an apology hasn't helped things. I'm not going to trade in this glorified paperweight because - let's face it - it's worthless anyway. Who knows, maybe Kojima can save the day with the release of Metal Gear Solid 3D: Snake Eater? Maybe Nintendo will clean up its act and clean up the GBA ports that are still forthcoming?

What are your thoughts on the 3DS Ambassador Program? Am I just an ungrateful troll?
  1. Nintendo AU - Nintendo 3DS Ambassador Program:
  2. Kotaku - How Nintendo 3DS Ambassadors Can Download Their Free NES Games:
  3. Bitmob - News Blips: 3DS gets ambassadorial, BioWare's new game, Modern Warfare 3 Hardened Edition, and more:

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