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One day before the Tokyo Game Show, Nintendo has announced the launch dates of several high-profile games for the 3DS handheld console, as well as a new analog stick add-on.
Nintendo investors and fans have been eagerly awaiting encouraging news on the console, which has struggled to make a significant splash since its debut in March, 2011. The console has only sold 830,000 units in the U.S., and the company needs to gin up demand by adding great games. Demand for the console has already somewhat improved since Nintendo dropped the device’s price from $250 to $170.
Two of Nintendo’s biggest North American game launches this year will be Super Mario 3D Land on Nov. 13 and Mario Kart 7 on Dec. 4. Games announced for 2012 include Mario Tennis, Paper Mario, Luigi’s Mansion, Animal Crossing and Kid Icarus: Uprising, a title that was originally supposed to launch in 2011.
The company gave a release date for the hotly anticipated, free downloadable game The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords. It will be available for the DSi, DSi XL and 3DS, and can be downloaded from the DSiWare or eShop store fronts between Sept. 28 and Feb. 20, 2012.
Nintendo also announced a new 3DS peripheral that will add a second circle pad — dubbed the 3DS Expansion Slide Pad — which will launch in Japan on Dec. 10. There’s no word on a release for North American gamers yet.
Investors did not seem impressed by the announcement, as U.S.-based shares for the company dropped more than 4 percent on Tuesday.