For an explanation regarding the recent void of updates on the blog, click here. Now then, moving along.
In a few short hours Nintendo will be holding a press event all about the 3DS. Many possible announcements float in the air at the moment. Hardware release dates and new software are well within the realm of possibility, along with many other hypothetical headlines.
First off, it's certain that the hardware's Japanese release date will be laid down tonight. After all, that's pretty much the core purpose of the event. Well, as far as we know, at least. Back on subject, many "sources" point to this yet-to-be-announced release dropping on the 11th of November. Can't really call it a prediction what with the crazy amount of outlets pointing in that direction, ergo this paragraph shall just sit here with a blank look on its face, much like I do every day.
Crossing the ocean back to the land upon which my blank look is typically fixated, many are eagerly anticipating a release date for the North American market. Sadly for those people (Myself included, blank stare and all), I just don't see such an announcement taking place tonight. Look anywhere and you'll see a million signs pointing towards the system not hitting our shores until at least 2011. Games deemed launch titles are being quietly announced for next year, bringing the 3DS along with them. Add to that the complications that would result from attempting to release a highly-anticipated system in multiple regions nigh-simultaneously and you've got a 2011 launch date*.
One announcement that's sure to please everyone, however, will be the highly-probable reveal of the 3DS' final design. As has been stated repeatedly since E3, the model we've seen so far is still in development, and changes from that model are surely going to be detailed tonight. I'm anticipating a sleeker design, one without the two different types of plastic comprising the inner and outer halves of the lower section. Doubling the camera on the inside to allow for more 3D picture possibilities would be nice as well, but I'm not exactly expecting it. I suppose such a feature would lend itself to some rather perverse interactions should a video chat service be included...
Slightly related to the above is the announcement of a new built-in, game-changing feature. It was suggested many months ago that the 3D was far from being the most revolutionary of gameplay-related additions to the handheld, and now would be the time to announce such a feature. What could it be? A multi-touch screen on the bottom, allowing for more advanced manipulation of and interaction with the game world? Perhaps the seemingly-normal camera we've seen on the inside is actually a highly-advanced, Kinect-like, hands-free motion controller? Or could there be no final secret after all and I'm just rambling like a madman? I suppose we'll find out shortly.
Uncertainties aside, one thing we all know for sure is that the 3DS is going to be a great system once it hits... Whenever that may happen to be. Whether it's next month or next year, though, it will certainly be worth the wait.
*Slightly off-topic, I personally believe the 3DS will be hitting North America sometime in February or March 2011. My mind's stuck on February 20th for some unknown reason... Or maybe it could be really cool and launch almost a month earlier, on my birthday (Which conveniently lands on a Sunday). Well, Nintendo, if you've been wondering what to get me this year...