Nintendo to Offer 3DS Downloadable Games on June 7

Sales of the new 3D console have disappointed since its late February launch.

TOKYO – Nintendo is to start offering downloadable games for its 3DS portable console on June 7 in an attempt to boost flagging sales for the device which is being outsold by Sony’s PlayStation Portable (PSP) by two-to-one in the Japanese market. 

As well as 3DS-specific games, users will be able to download classic titles designed for Nintendo’s Game Boy; the lack of backwards compatibility for Game Boy software has been a complaint about the 3DS since its launch.      

Kyoto-based Nintendo had high hopes for the $250 glasses-free 3DS when it launched at the end of February in Japan. However, sales have disappointed faced with a sluggish post-disaster domestic economy, a lack of must-have games, competition from cheaper game-playing smartphones and concerns about eye-strain from the 3DS’ dual 3D displays.

Although sales of the 3DS have been lackluster globally, the company predicted this week that it will shift 16 million units worldwide by the end of the year.