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5 3DS games that are better on 3DS XL

Why games such as Mario Kart 7 and Kid Icarus Uprising are better on the big screens

Remember when you first switched on 3DS and you had that initial 'wow' moment? Perhaps it was when a dragon burst out of your kitchen table in the AR games, or maybe when you saw your Mii fly through the air in a squirrel suit in Pilotwings Resort, or even when a dog looked like it really was going to lick your face in Nintendogs and Cats. You'll have that moment all over again when playing Nintendo 3DS XL.

For me, it came when I was playing Mario Kart 7 and flew through the tunnel in the Waluigi Pinball course. I even involuntarily said "Wow" out loud on the tube.

Click to view larger image
You see, thanks to the new console's larger screens and exaggerated 3D, some of your 3DS games are simply better on 3DS XL. Here are five of the best.

1. Super Mario 3D Land

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Of all the games you might have expected to be improved by 3DS XL, you might not have thought that Super Mario 3D Land would be one of them. After all, while its use of 3D is smart, it doesn't exactly boast expansive environments like Zelda: Ocarina Of Time.

Yet while Ocarina Of Time is the only game we've played that's perhaps best on the original 3DS (those old N64 visuals look a bit dated on the bigger screens), Mario 3D Land sparkles on 3DS XL. It's immediately obvious as soon as you switch the game on and the logo (complete with waggling Tanooki tail) comes bursting out at you. For some reason, the colours appear brighter as Mario leaps on the blocks next to what is now a massive wall.

Then you start World 1-1 and that Cheep Cheep leaps out of the screen - it's hardly Jaws but it looks cool. Then there's the little 3D illusion puzzle hidden in the warp pipe in the sky. You know the one in which you have to flick the 3D slider up to spot that the Star Coin is sitting above a brown block that appears to be in a different place in 2D. This seems to stand out even more now.

Another 'in your face' moment comes when the Blooper spits ink at the screen in World 2-2 but the main reason why Mario 3D Land is better on 3DS XL than on 3DS comes in World 5-2. AKA The Zelda level. Play this again on your original 3DS after having a go on 3DS XL and you'll really notice the difference.

It just appears to have so much more depth, especially when Mario (or Luigi) drops down into the sandy pits or springs off that bouncy block in the lava pit just after the checkpoint. The flames shooting upwards from the lava are more impressive, too.

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  1. tomutwit Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 14:14

    I think the title should be "The 5 3DS games that were actually worth playing that we are trying to say look better on 3DS XL using weak and feeble arguments"

    - Oh wait, I only have four 3DS games. Guess that means there's only four worth having.

  2. ledreppe Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 14:35

    I think the title should be "The 5 3DS games that were actually worth playing that we are trying to say look better on 3DS XL using weak and feeble arguments"

    - Oh wait, I only have four 3DS games. Guess that means there's only four worth having.

    It's more like you only have 4 games, because that's all you can afford!

    What about Pilotwings Resort and Ocarina of Time 3D, do these look better on XL?

  3. reeesy Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 14:38

    i reckon StarFox 64 would look great too.

  4. PuAl Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 14:41

    This really annoys me. Releasing an updated model a mere year and a half after the initial launch and doing nothing whatsoever to compensate the early adopters is a massive kick in the crotch to the fans. Not sure if I want to give them my money when the WiiU launches anymore.

  5. torterratrainer Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 15:12

    its not better graphical qualitys and coloration is good, there just evenly (without ruining because i used to have a dsi xl) up scaled. you probably haven't played some of these games in a while ONM team as your reviewing others and have likely finished them in you re ow time

  6. Pyron12 Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 15:23

    This really annoys me. Releasing an updated model a mere year and a half after the initial launch and doing nothing whatsoever to compensate the early adopters is a massive kick in the crotch to the fans. Not sure if I want to give them my money when the WiiU launches anymore.


    That really stinks. But the Wii U is being released six years after the Wii and the Wii U will be very different.

  7. CyberGW Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 15:36

    It sounds like the screen is really nice then!
    Would like one, but don't have the money.

  8. Donkey Kong Jr. Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 15:53

    I can't wait for MK7 with massive screens! I am very excited!

  9. Misanthropy Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 15:53

    I agree with the negative comments here
    this article only serves to try to get you to want to buy a 3DSXL when infact those games are perfectly fine on the regular 3DS
    and to release another model of the 3DS so soon after the regular one is a slap in the face to everyone who bought a 3DS when it came out they should be rewarding customers who buy early and the ambassador games weren't enough I only play a couple of them at most.
    And I bet the 3DSXL even has problems with the bottom screen scratching the top one as well. We shall see when it comes out

  10. Redfish20 Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 16:18

    I think the title should be "The 5 3DS games that were actually worth playing that we are trying to say look better on 3DS XL using weak and feeble arguments"

    - Oh wait, I only have four 3DS games. Guess that means there's only four worth having.

    -Oh wait I don't own a car. Guess that means it's not worth owning a car.

    anyway please don't let me interrupt your commentary on "weak and feeble arguments"

  11. Wii U Marry Mii Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 16:43

    Yet this still doesn't make the 3DS XL worth it at all.

  12. geengy Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 17:04

    I guess this makes good sense, apart from hat bit about the lefties in Kid Icarus: Uprising and the stand.

    This is quite the balls-up for us all and I could have done better if the original was released with bigger screens , especially with the better battery life.

  13. Misanthropy Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 17:19

    I guess this makes good sense, apart from hat bit about the lefties in Kid Icarus: Uprising and the stand.

    This is quite the balls-up for us all and I could have done better if the original was released with bigger screens , especially with the better battery life.

    and of course the rubber stoppers in the correct place on the corners of the top screen or get rid of that ridge around the bottom screen or both

  14. bots Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 17:21

    I'd rather just keep my 3DS because it's not essential that I get the XL is it?

  15. C00LI098 Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 18:43

    I think the title should be "The 5 3DS games that were actually worth playing that we are trying to say look better on 3DS XL using weak and feeble arguments"

    - Oh wait, I only have four 3DS games. Guess that means there's only four worth having.


    Completely agree. "Oh, wow, look at how great this game looks on 3DS XL! It has great 3D effects!"

    Guess what? I can experience great 3D effects using my 3DS. Shocker.

  16. hamzahdsi Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 19:10

    I dont think they would look better-just bigger

  17. Aboyandhissequel Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 20:16

    They named 5 games which look better. Speaking strictly of facts we can then only assume that every single other 3DS game looked the same or worse.

    It might have been better just to write about a huge article comparing the two consoles with pros and cons for both. Instead of this rather lacklustre attempt at trying to convince people that we should all sell our 3DS's to play a handful of games.

    I'm not having the argument anyway. A 40 inch HD monitor looks better then a 22 inch HD monitor because it's bigger; but the 22 inch monitor guy still gets a quality experience after all.

  18. TaleOfTheToaster Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 20:41

    5 games that look better on 3DS XL? How about 246 games that look better on 3DS XL?
    They ALL look better...

  19. alexkinch Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 20:46

    They named 5 games which look better. Speaking strictly of facts we can then only assume that every single other 3DS game looked the same or worse.

    It might have been better just to write about a huge article comparing the two consoles with pros and cons for both. Instead of this rather lacklustre attempt at trying to convince people that we should all sell our 3DS's to play a handful of games.

    I'm not having the argument anyway. A 40 inch HD monitor looks better then a 22 inch HD monitor because it's bigger; but the 22 inch monitor guy still gets a quality experience after all.


    not really a bigger screen can stretch the image (dsi xl).

  20. Kirby8 Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 22:29

    This really annoys me. Releasing an updated model a mere year and a half after the initial launch and doing nothing whatsoever to compensate the early adopters is a massive kick in the crotch to the fans. Not sure if I want to give them my money when the WiiU launches anymore.


    That really stinks. But the Wii U is being released six years after the Wii and the Wii U will be very different.

    I don't think he's complaining about the about the Wii U being launched. I think he's saying that he doesn't want to give Nintendo his money when the Wii U launches in case the same thing happens. Nintendo's updates to their home consoles tend to be little to none, especially in comparison to their portable consoles, but you never know.

  21. barrybarryk Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 22:41

    Um yeah not to disrupt all the fun 3DS XL bashing, I don't own a 3DS, 'mobile' gaming doesn't really appeal me so whether it fits in my pocket or not is irrelevant and I thought the original 3DS was way to small for me and my giant hands but a 3DS XL looks like something I might actually buy after I have a quick look at one in a store.

    It isn't an 'updated' model, it's just a different model. It's not like your 3DS is going to self destruct when the XL goes on sale

  22. omza Wednesday 4th Jul 2012 at 23:51

    Don't complain about the timings, people. Don't forget that the DS Lite also came out only a year and a half after the original DS, and they were only really aesthetic improvements.

  23. imbusydoctorwho Thursday 5th Jul 2012 at 12:31

    I bet Metal Gear Solid looks beautiful on this.

  24. TheAwkwardDancer Thursday 5th Jul 2012 at 17:30

    I just saw one for real and I must say, THAT'S ONE BIG WHOPPER! It's just too big for me, so I'll stick with the original 3DS for now, thank you very much.

  25. Tams Thursday 5th Jul 2012 at 23:35

    This really annoys me. Releasing an updated model a mere year and a half after the initial launch and doing nothing whatsoever to compensate the early adopters is a massive kick in the crotch to the fans. Not sure if I want to give them my money when the WiiU launches anymore.

    Really? Sure, the 3D may be better, but really it's just a bigger 3DS (and not as good looking in my opinion). It's more just a variation of the same handheld. If the 3DS was really too small, surely you wouldn't have got one?
    Now, if it were a new handheld; essentially with several new features, then yes, that would be annoying.

    More to the point though. You should buy all technology with the knowledge it will be outdated very quickly if you compared it to the latest. There's no point getting in such a buyer's remorse. If something gets updated more than every 6 months though, it's getting ridiculous.

  26. ThePokekid78 Friday 6th Jul 2012 at 14:05

    I agree with the negative comments here - you could easily make articles like this for every single new TV that comes out that's a few inches wider, and talk about 'all the films that are so much better on it', but no-one does. There's no point in trying to get people to buy this new model when it's really no different.

  27. Reven the Brewer Saturday 7th Jul 2012 at 19:36

    Only five i beg to differ imagine heroes of ruin or somethingelse thats awesome

  28. peter_bread Sunday 8th Jul 2012 at 15:51

    I agree that they probably will look better but i think Nintendo are just making small changes to the 3DS to get more money, I mean why not just release it as a 3DS XL first time round they've already done it once and i didn't buy one then either

  29. TwoDaysAgo Sunday 8th Jul 2012 at 16:05

    I wish ONM would stop trying to sell it to us, every time they try to convince me that it's great I just dislike it more. They just repeat how good big screens are, how great the round edges are and the that bigger battery life is amazing. In my opinion, bigger screens = bigger headaches, the edges of my 3DS don't cause me any trouble and the battery life is perfectly fine. But that's okay, 5 games look a bit better. Of course, that makes a HUUUGEE difference... :|

    I know I'll get a little hate for this comment, but what I've said is my opinion, I'm not stopping you from having yours...

  30. CraigEmberson Monday 9th Jul 2012 at 14:20

    Hi Thomas, can I ask a couple of questions?

    Is the 3DS XL's shell matte plastic? I ask because I want one, yet am worried as I have a sensitivity to rubbery materials. I also want to know about your article... You say things look better only because of the 3D and bigger view of the world in games, yet I worry that you haven't commented on if it looks more pixelated or if it actually resolves the pixelation.

    My theory has always been that because the physical dimensions of the 3DS screen (in relation/equal to pixel dimensions) are 300x180, whereas the native resolution in pixels is 400x240 - so it is squeezed down from the size it's made in, during development (if this is making any sense) - thus causing the pixelation around the edges. I'm no good at explaining but I measured the original 3DS screen with 300x180 pixels and it's the same size. Does this mean it will appear better or do the visuals and edges look worse or better?

  31. skullkid92 Friday 13th Jul 2012 at 11:09

    to kille thjem quickley lol

  32. BattleGooseUK Sunday 15th Jul 2012 at 00:39

    I can't wait for this, got to have a play about on one the other day. Blown away, feels so much better in the hands than the original and the 3D is better than my 40" TV! For all you whiners, I've Enjoyed Nintendo for the last 20 years and I don't feel insulted, if you don't want it, don't get it, it really IS that simple.

  33. Komodo_Wolfgang Sunday 29th Jul 2012 at 23:19

    I agree with the negative comments here
    this article only serves to try to get you to want to buy a 3DSXL when infact those games are perfectly fine on the regular 3DS
    and to release another model of the 3DS so soon after the regular one is a slap in the face to everyone who bought a 3DS when it came out they should be rewarding customers who buy early and the ambassador games weren't enough I only play a couple of them at most.
    And I bet the 3DSXL even has problems with the bottom screen scratching the top one as well. We shall see when it comes out

    Needs punctuation..,.Badly.

    Grammar/Spelling whatever nazi aside.

    this article only serves to try to get you to want to buy a 3DSXL


    I agree. And so far so have the other "why you should buy a 3DSXL" Topics. They seem to be just using it as a way to push us to buy it. They seem to be pushing really hard to sell it, and the only thing thats really good about it is that the screens better. And until they start putting on actual Films on the 3DS as aforementioned before release, I dont think it was really needed this update. It came too soon.

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