Is Nintendo 3DS still worth buying in 2021?


The 3DS was released in 2011, but even 10 years later, games like Pokemon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire and Animal Crossing: New Leaf are still talking about them in the Nintendo community to this day.

While some fantastic games have been released for the system during its lifetime, is the Nintendo 3DS worth buying?

While you might feel left out for missing out on this excellent console in its heyday, there are a few things to look out for before buying a 3DS now.

Nintendo 3DS price and where to buy one

When the 3DS first came out in March 2011, Nintendo fixed the price at $ 249. After the system got off to a slow start in sales due to a lack of compelling games available at launch, Nintendo then slashed the price to $ 169 after just five months on the market.

Nintendo even gave early adopters of the system NES and GBA virtual console titles to make the higher price they paid for the console worth it.

Since the 3DS is much harder to find at reputable retailers 10 years after its release, a wide range of prices can be found online.

Nintendo 3DS models available for purchase

The Nintendo 3DS has had several models in its lifetime, with some more sought after than others due to a nicer color or a special edition version. Here’s a quick look at which models have been released, along with the average price they are priced at at the time of writing.

  1. Original Nintendo 3DS (2011): $ 200
  2. Nintendo 3DS XL (2012): $ 230
  3. Nintendo 2DS (2013): $ 160
  4. New Nintendo 3DS (2015): $ 250
  5. New Nintendo 3DS XL (2015): $ 300
  6. New Nintendo 2DS XL (2017): $ 260


Due to the cessation of manufacturing of all 3DS models in September 2020, their prices will vary depending on the most popular editions and the condition of each individual console. When looking for your 3DS online, be sure to search for the exact model to get the best price insight.

Usually the best place to buy a used console is at a major retailer, like Best Buy or GameStop; however, at the time of writing, the 3DS consoles listed on the GameStop website are only available in individual stores and cannot be purchased online.

Gamers looking to get their hands on the next-gen Nintendo console may need to be content with buying it from a third-party seller on eBay or Amazon, or through a retro game store like DK Oldies.

Nintendo 3DS offers an incredible selection of games

Gray New Nintendo 3DS XL surrounded by games

The best part about owning a 3DS now is still being able to play a wide range of fantastic and exclusive games that have been released during its 10 year lifespan.

Pokemon fans will find hours of fun in X & Y as well as Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire. Those who love Japanese RPGs will fall in love with the adventures of the Bravely Default series, as well as a wide range of Legend of Zelda titles. Single-player platform games have always been a big part of Nintendo’s handheld game lineup, and this is no exception for the 3DS with titles like Kirby: Triple Deluxe and Metroid: Samus Returns.

The 3DS eShop, which includes many of the most popular games, as well as virtual console titles for Game Boy, Game Boy Color, and NES, is also still live.

Popular Pokemon titles from Generation One and Two are available and still provide hours of fun. Playing games on Virtual Console also saves battery power as the 3D effect is not enabled and the touchscreen is not used for most of your gaming time.

Related: How To Save Money On Your Nintendo Switch Games

Does Nintendo still support 3DS?

Dark Gray New Nintendo 3DS XL on Dark Background

Although the Nintendo 3DS was discontinued in 2020, many parts of the system still remain online.

The 3DS online store

The eShop will remain live until further notice, but Nintendo has announced that credit card and other electronic payments will no longer be accepted on the system itself as of January 22, 2022. That doesn’t mean, however. that gamers will not be able to purchase games for their 3DS through the eShop in the future.

Instead, Nintendo has said that prepaid, credit and debit cards through the Nintendo website, as well as adding balances to your Nintendo Account through the Switch eShop, will still be accepted. This will allow 3DS owners to continue browsing and purchasing games on the eShop.

Online multiplayer

Although it might seem surprising, people are still playing games online on the 3DS! There were a lot of games for the 3DS that specialized in online play, such as Super Smash Bros. and Super Street Fighter IV.

In September 2020, after Nintendo announced the end of manufacture of the 3DS, Nintendo also wanted to assure current 3DS owners that they are “not currently considering terminating existing online services for the Nintendo 3DS family of systems. . Online play and Nintendo eShop will continue to be available and it will be possible to access and redownload all previously purchased content for the foreseeable future. “

This is great news for those of us who still want to fight with players from all over the world in Mario Kart 7 and the like.

Related: Hated Brawl? Super Smash Bros. for 3DS is for you

Guarantee and repairs

Nintendo offers most of its consoles, including the Switch and 3DS, a 12-month limited warranty. Its warranty covers manufacturing defects that affect the material and does not cover accidental damage such as drops, water damage and similar damage caused by the user.

However, if your 3DS is out of warranty, you can still request a repair through Nintendo Support. According to the support page, this applies to everything from current Switch models, to the entire 3DS and 2DS family, to the Wii U, to the Wii, to the NES Mini Classic Edition and to the Nintendo family. DS.

Related: Is This The Joy-Con Drift Fix We’ve All Been Waiting For?

Should you buy a Nintendo 3DS in 2021?

Aqua Blue Original Nintendo 3DS on white background

It should come as no surprise that over the 10 year lifespan of this Nintendo handheld, there have been many amazing and exclusive games released. Whatever type of games you love, there is one you will fall in love with on Nintendo 3DS. However, the handheld will not have any more new games for it, as the Nintendo Switch is such an incredibly popular console.

Online multiplayer, as well as Nintendo’s eShop, will remain online, and although the console’s price has increased since its initial release, the 3DS is still available for under $ 300. Another advantage of buying Nintendo 3DS on the Switch is its portability. In 2021, it’s a rarity to be able to carry a console in your pocket with games that can provide hours of fun.

However, purchasing any discontinued console comes with the risk of removing online features and hardware issues that can be difficult to fix. Nintendo consoles and games are known to be extremely reliable, but it’s something to keep in mind.

Nintendo seems to be very much in favor of the availability of official repair support for its discontinued consoles, from the Wii and the DS. This is a good sign that much needed repair will be possible in the future.

If you already own a Switch and want to finally play those fantastic games that you missed that are exclusive to 3DS, now is the time to grab the latest generation handheld from Nintendo.

Nintendo 3DS will never be forgotten

While it is sad to see the history of Nintendo 3DS come to an end, it will live and be remembered as another chapter in Nintendo history.

If we’re being completely honest, in 2021 the Nintendo Switch is a better buy if you don’t already have one. However, if you’re dying to try out a brilliant Nintendo handheld that you missed out on, the 3DS is still a fantastic addition to your console collection.


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