While the XBox dashboard update is grabbing all the headlines, Nintendo has quietly updated the firmware for its 3DS console, meaning that users will now be able to capture up to ten minutes of 3D video and make stop-motion animations.
This major update has also introduced ‘accomplishments’ to the device, the closest that Nintendo has yet come to offering Xbox-like achievements.
The update, which is now available directly through your 3DS console, adds new puzzles to the StreetPass Mii Plaza, along with a new dungeon for the StreetPass Quest game. These games are part of the unique Street Pass functionality of the 3DS, that allows users to share Miis and profile information as they pass each other on the street.
The ‘accomplishments’, added in this update, all relate directly to the Mii Plaza, and include ‘meet Mii characters from ten countries’ and ‘receive a personal greeting’. Given Nintendo’s previously reported scepticism about the value of achievements in games, it may be that these accomplishments will not spread beyond the Mii Plaza. But Nintendo is is renowned for springing surprises on its customer base, so nothing is for certain.
Another key feature of this update is the ability to transfer content, including software from the Nintendo eShop, account funds and save data, to a new 3DS console. Nintendo details this process on its support site, and users will no doubt be pleased to see this more flexible approach being taken, especially given the content locking that was seen on the DSi . There are some restrictions to the 3DS transfer process – up to five transfers are permitted in total and there will be a waiting period applied between each transfer. In addition, content can’t be exchanged between systems with different region or country settings.
If you have a 3DS, then it should automatically request an update to this new firmware. If it doesn’t, then you can follow the procedure to perform a system update, as outlined on Nintendo’s support site.