StreetPass At Otakon 2012

Freaking everybody had a 3DS at Otakon this year. I think we all had a feeling this would be a big opportunity for people outside of Japan to actually get a lot of use out of StreetPass, but Jesus Christ. I still don’t know what this indicates about the platform’s position though.

I got something like 400+ 1up mushrooms in Super Mario 3D Land over the course of one weekend along with enough special coins to skip most of the hard mode levels. I really didn’t expect to see so many mystery boxes to show up, only for new ones to appear as I was playing, which kept me stuck on the game for hours. Even though that told me a lot of people bought the hardware, for a year-old platform there still doesn’t seem to be a lot of software variety.

From what I can tell most of the StreetPass going around at Otakon was for two games. Actually, almost everyone I saw playing a DS was playing the same game: The “Find Mii” game that comes pre-installed in the 3DS as part of Mii Plaza. The funny part is, I didn’t even know what it was until I finally asked someone the night before I left the convention.

All this time I just thought Mii Plaza was the same as its Wii equivalent – an indexer for all the Miis installed on your hardware. For those that still don’t know, I had no idea there was a whole Dragon Quest-style RPG packed inside. The whole time I was up there I kept thinking “what the hell is this RPG people are playing with the Miis?!”

Within the last few hours of my stay at the convention I was able to collect some 60 Miis in Mii Plaza, and I like how through it I was able to collect data on who went to the convention: where they came there from, what games they were playing, etc. Other than Mii Plaza, the most popular 3DS software right now, or at Otakon at least, seem to be 3D Land, the Kingdom Hearts 3D demo, and Theatrhthm Final Fantasy.

Even before I left for Otakon I remarked at how little 3DS software I owned at this point. Actually, the problem is just the small number of notable retail releases there have been for the system so far. For me the 3DS had become very valuable, but almost primarily for the games from eShop. Nintendo’s 8bit summer, weekend deals this summer, and free Club Nintendo games have reinvigorated the platform in my experience.

Still, this fall, starting with New Super Mario Bros. 2 should start to improve the retail landscape with stuff like Epic Mickey Power of Illusion, Zero Escape: Virtue’s Reward, Paper Mario, Luigi’s Mansion, and the next Professor Layton game. Now if only more of the Japanese stuff could get localized.

BULLETS:

  • Huh. European PS3 owners can pre-purchase and pre-load Assassin’s Creed III on PSN. Same goes for Liberation on the Vita. Hope it’s a sign of things to come.
  • The opening scene of A Link to the Past is one of my all time favorites: http://flpbd.it/rZE8i 
  • Seems the publishing industry is facing some of the same problems as the game industry. http://pocket.co/sQI8n 
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