Forums - Nintendo Discussion - 3DS just had its best month of sales since late 2014! What does this mean for its future?


Many have wondered if Nintendo would discontinue the 3DS because there’s a new kid on the block called the Switch, which is also a portable console.

Nintendo has denied this and it seems that the most recent sales data will shut up 3DS critics for a while.

That’s because last month the 3DS family of consoles has its best selling month since December of 2014. And that’s despite the competition from smartphones and now its big brother, the Switch.

The 3DS sold 750,000 units in December in the US. That’s very impressive for an aging console. It helps that the new 2DS XL was released last Summer.

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Unless they just want one system, they are going to either need to replace the 3DS or continue to find ways to print money with it for a few more years. A few price adjustments on the actual 3DSXL could help.

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Nintendo will produce the device as long as there's enough demand for it, but those December sales don't change anything in regards to first party support in 2018. As for third parties, only Japanese ones still have 3DS games in development, but they can tell from Japanese sales charts that Switch is the future, so they'll go Switch once their 3DS games have finished development.

Legend11 correctly predicted that GTA IV (360+PS3) would outsell SSBB. I was wrong.

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That if Nintendo finds the way to sell the 3DS for 49.99$ they should consider keeping the thing on the market until 2022

Nothing really.Nintendo cant keep eternally supporting the system, and it will eventually be left to die.Nintendo support was already wanning in 2017, and all things point that Nintendo support will be even lower this year.Probably third parties will be more proeminent this year, more likely due to late localization.And little by little, support will be pulled away.

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I wouldn't mind if they keep making games for the 3DS, but why don't they just release them on the Switch too?

This doesn't really indicate anything other than 3DS ending up with higher-than-expected lifetime sales. It's still an aging console, and its active user base is on the decline. Even though Nintendo had a pretty respectable lineup of 3DS games last year, software sales were overwhelmingly concentrated on evergreen franchises rather than new releases. At this point, the back catalog is selling the system. All Nintendo needs to do now is keep producing units for as long as they'll sell.

I think the key focus for Nintendo right now should be lining up resources to grow the Switch, as that is their future. The installbase for the Switch is not yet at the point where it can be considered viable, so Nintendo needs to do as much as possible to grow the base, and that includes having the vast majority of development capacity behind it.

As for the 3DS, there are still plenty of avenues to continue supporting it until its sales curve flatlines. In the West, there are good number of Japanese games, largely third-party titles, that they can localize and potentially publish. They can also bring smaller projects to the system like a WarioWare style game. Ideally it would be nice if some of the future larger 3DS projects (if there any left; I suspect there may be 1 or 2 potentially left) to the Switch as well. However, I do not believe they need to do much beyond that at this point to entice newer buyers; chances are that people that are purchasing the 3DS/2DS these days were hold outs because of price and already have games available int he backlog that they want to play (many of which are cheaper now).

3DS is almost seven years old now. There's an emu out for it. The only new noteworthy games coming out for it are Atlus games. These are the twilight years of the system. By 2019 3DS sales will fall below 20,000 a week.

But man, oh man what a great little system it was! I have over 30 3DS games. Atlus just kept supporting and supporting that little system with all those great JRPGs. The mainline Nintendo stuff, on the 3DS, was some of their best software in years. 

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Its pretty crazy that 3DS sales are still humming along decently despite the Switch being out as its successor and being super popular. This year though they should definitely knock $50 off the price of 3DS and 2DS to keep it still viable while the Switch is the high end portable at $300.