Nintendo 2DS Gaming Handheld Announced, Plays 3DS Games in 2D, But Why?

While Nintendo gets left behind in this year's next-generation console war, it's doing something a little different. Granted, Nintendo has always operated a little differently. It was the first to truly embrace motion controls on its Wii, and the Wii U shipped with a GamePad that's most definitely a first in the sector. But, with the Wii U doing so poorly that it's being forced to hack $50 from the cost of the 32GB unit, Nintendo is having to lean on something else: handhelds.

The 3DS has been fairly successful, and Nintendo's handheld lineage as a whole is one that gamers far and wide have grown to respect. This thing, however, is questionable at best. Nintendo has just unveiled the 2DS: it's a 3DS, but it throws 3D aside and changes up the form factor. It'll ship in red and blue, and will play all of the DS games already available. The harsh reality is that 3D has been a huge bust outside of the cinema. No one wants to wear 3D glasses for 3D at home, and those glasses-free 3D devices (much like the 3DS) are seen mostly as gimmicks.

The 2DS honestly looks and sounds like an April Fool's prank, but believe us, it's real. Very real. In a nutshell, the 2DS has two screens and the same controls as the 3DS, but instead of boasting a hinged form factor, this one's flat... like a tablet. It'll fit in only the largest of cargo short pockets by our estimation, but the simplification means that it's also cheaper. It'll retail for $129.99 when it ships to North America on October 12, which is $40 less than the basic 3DS and $70 less than the 3DS XL.

We're guessing that Nintendo is simply hoping that parents spring for this as an impulse-buy Christmas gift during their Black Friday escapades.