Rip-off Britain strikes again as Nintendo's new 3D games console costs 40% more than in U.S.

It is set to be the pester power purchase of 2011.

Nintendo today launched its ground-breaking 3DS handheld console - the first to offer 3D images without the need for special glasses.

The console will go into stores on March 25 in Britain and Europe with a collection of 3D games, movies and its own 3D camera system.

The pleas from children demanding the latest version of the hugely successful console have already begun in many households.

Launched: The Nintendo 3DS will cost £229.99 in the UK, which is a mark-up of more than 40 per cent compared to the $249.99 (£156.50) charged in the U.S.

Launched: The Nintendo 3DS will cost £229.99 in the UK, which is a mark-up of more than 40 per cent compared to the $249.99 (£156.50) charged in the U.S.

However, once again, British consumers will have to pay more than their American counterparts for the latest technology.

The hi-tech console will cost £229.99 in the UK, which is a mark-up of more than 40 per cent compared to the $249.99 (£156.50) charged in the U.S. 

Details were announced at an event in Amsterdam fronted by Jonathan Ross and Ortis Deley of Channel 5's The Gadget Show, who described it as a 'complete and utter game changer'.

Nintendo are presenting the new console as a portable entertainment system, rather than a games machine for children.


To create the 3D effect the Nintendo 3DS uses a device called a parallax barrier.

This is a second LCD screen that sits over the main viewing panel that consists of a layer of material with a series of precision slits, allowing each eye to see a different set of pixels, so creating a sense of 3D depth.

It works well providing the user sits in a fixed point in front of the image but does not work when viewed from an angle.

A slider at the side of the device lets users choose the intensity of the 3D display, from an extreme 'in your face' experience to a more subtle effect.

Apart from a mix of games and films, Nintendo has signed a partnership with Eurosport and Sky which will allow short downloads of 3D sport, such as Premier League football highlights.

Users will also be able to care for a 3D virtual pet using the Nintendogs and cats software. There are also more adult games, such as Super Street Fighter and Resident Evil.

The firm behind Wallace and Gromit, Aardman Animations, will provide a series of original Shaun the Sheep short movies in 3D.

The console, which like existing DS gadgets, has two small screens and is able to connect to the web over wi-fi hot spots.

Users can activate a StreetPass feature, which is capable of exchanging game information with other Nintendo 3DS systems as owners pass one another during the day.

In this way, people can swap information on games they are playing and the levels they have reached.

Nintendo of Europe's Laurent Fischer, said: 'Nintendo 3DS is not just about being able to watch and play in 3D without glasses – it also offers unique social experiences.

'In the way Wii brought families together, Nintendo 3DS will appeal to a broad range of people.'

President of Nintendo Satoru Iwata

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata first introduced the 3DS in June last year

Nintendo 3DS includes two screens. The bottom touch screen makes use of a telescoping stylus that is stored in the unit itself. The top screen displays 3D visuals to the naked eye.

The company claims that looking at the screen 'is like peering through a window into a world where characters and objects have true depth'.

The system also has a 3D Depth Slider that lets players select the level of 3D they enjoy the most. The 3D effect can be increased up to the highest level, scaled back to a more moderate setting or even turned off completely.

In addition to the familiar Control Pad and buttons found on previous consoles, the 3DS includes a Circle Pad, which provides a full 360 degrees of direction, giving the freedom needed to play games in 3D worlds.

While the new console will inevitably appeal to very young children, Nintendo has issued a warning that those under six should not use the 3D function.

This is because there is a danger that it could interfere with the development of eyesight and the use of the eye muscles.

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