Confusingly Named 'New Nintendo 3DS XL' Headed To U.S. February 13 For $200

Planning on getting a new Nintendo 3DS XL handheld console? First you'll have to clarify if you mean a new model from the existing line, or if you mean a new "New Nintendo 3DS XL," which is a different beast. Also, it's not yet available to purchase in the U.S., though it will finally make its way to our shores on February 13, 2015 for $199.99 -- Valentine's Day gift, anyone?

Uh oh, we see that glazed over look in your eyes. Let us clarify -- the New Nintendo 3DS XL is an upgraded version of the original Nintendo 3DS XL. That's surely going to cause some confusion when little Billy hands grandma a wishlist for his birthday, who then proceeds to purchase the original Nintendo 3DS XL instead of the newer model, but hey, at least he'll learn early on that life isn't always peaches and cream.

New Nintendo 3DS XL

In any event, the system was actually announced way back in August of last year before launching in Japan in October. The refreshed model sports a faster processor to presumably load games a little quicker, along a few other improvements -- better Wi-Fi, a new head-tracking feature for a more flexible viewing angle of the device's 3D capability, NFC support, longer battery life, auto-brightness features, two additional shoulder buttons, and the addition of a C-Stick (it does the same thing as the Circle Pad Pro attachment).

If you already own a robust collection of Nintendo 3DS titles, no worries, the New Nintendo 3DS XL will play them. However, the refreshed console will curiously ship without an AC adapter, so you can either re-use an old one from your previous DSi or 3DS handhelds, or purchase a new one. Alternately, you could play on it until the battery dies and add it to your expensive paperweight collection, right next to your HD-DVD player.

Also curious is the lack of a non-XL release in the U.S., at least for now -- Nintendo could always release the regular model down the line (they exist in Japan and sport custom faceplates). In the meantime, the New Nintendo 3DS XL will be available in red and black color options. There's also talk of special edition models, though it's not clear if those will be available in the U.S.