Nintendo has officially announced that the company will be releasing two new Nintendo 3DS models in Japan this year.
The new line of 3DS consoles – the 3DS and 3DS XL – feature a slew of hardware changes both inside and out. The most noticeable change is the new analog “C-Stick” (originally found on the original GameCube controller) placed above the console’s A, B, X, and Y face buttons. There are also two new shoulder buttons (labeled ZL and ZR) and the colors of the face buttons, on the regular 3DS at least, match the colors on the original NES controller. The regular 3DS is now also rounder to make the design of both models more consistent with each other and features a larger top-side screen now measuring 3.88-inches compared to the currently available 3DS’ 3.5-inch screen.
Other changes coming to both new versions of the 3DS include a new “Super-Stable 3d” function which, according to Nintendo, will provide a more comfortable 3D gaming experience, the moving of the cartridge slots to the front edge of the console instead of the rear, the inclusion of NFC for use with Nintendo’s upcoming Amiibo figurines, the switch from using SD cards to microSD cards, and a new replaceable battery. According to Nintendo, the new consoles also feature a new processor for better performance and will be receiving an exclusive port of the classic Wii Xenoblade Chronicles to showcase the new internals.
The new Nintendo 3DS models will be available in Japan on October 11 for an SRP of 16,000 Yen (around $154) for the 3DS and 18,800 Yen (around $181) for the 3DS XL. As for the rest of the world, Nintendo has announced that, while other markets will be getting the new models at separate dates later this year, the US and Europe will have to wait until next year for the new 3DS models to launch there.