By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
No Legend of Zelda fan can do without lusting after the “gold” limited edition version of Nintendo’s 3DS XL. It is very nice to look at and it can make for a great centrepiece for any fans collection.
Ever since I heard about this release, I have been thinking that yes, it is time to upgrade. When The Legend of Zelda: Hyrule Historia book is not enough to sate my appetite, this novelty release will certainly make my slowly growing collection worth displaying.
But is owning it worth the price? When considering that this package comes with a digital download of the game (or preinstalled, according to some advertisements) and nothing else, that’s hard to say.
In North America, fans are getting a decent package at a MSRP of $219.99. If I was to break down the cost, that’s $30 for the game and $190 for the unit. Come Black Friday, this package can be found for as low as $150 in the States. But in my recent price match searches, I think the discount will most likely float at the $175 mark. The big catch is in being able to find it. I bought mine early so I am not hunting for it at only four available outlets I have in town: Walmart, Future Shop, Toys R Us and EB Games.
I like the device. The screen makes for a huge difference and the only shame is that Nintendo has not opted to upgrade the cameras to a reasonable resolution. I am mildly disappointed that the shading of the Tri-force symbol is a painted modification than engraved. That would have made a huge difference for this device’s cool factor. And because of its light colouring, I will have to get a transparent shell to keep the handheld as pristine as possible. Maybe I can engrave something on that to give the symbol a embellished look.
But I have to note that in Europe, a collectors edition of the game includes a music box. When the games are region-locked, I am not gung-ho in ordering a hard copy just for a fancy storage container. The box is made to resemble the chest from many a Zelda game. It also doubles as a storage box for 3DS and DS cartridges. When considering many fans would like to keep their eggs in one basket — well in this case all their Zelda cartridges all in one nifty container — maybe Nintendo has faulted in providing a product that will satisfy fans from both sides of the Atlantic.
Why North America is excluded from this offer is unknown. Perhaps the box is an exclusive that GAME, an operation similar to EB, helped finance production of with Nintendo UK.
Hopefully some kind of North American incentive will appear by mid to late December, if not next year. The scenario of having a child or Zelda enthusiast unpackage the game and to find it nestled in a box within a box can be thrilling, especially with the music playing as its opened.
That can bring more than a smile on Christmas morning. The Zelda Nerd in me may well want to make me figure out the electronic schematics to make a chest that lights up from within while the music plays!