So you want to buy a Nintendo DS for Christmas either as a present or for yourself? Just in case you are new to the Nintendo DS, the Nintendo DS accessories and Nintendo DS games then we’ll go over the basics first.
The Nintendo DS is a great little portable games system that can be used at home in a comfy chair or while you’re commuting on a bus or train. The Nintendo DS console comes in two main flavours; the original launch model which is now commonly known as the DS Phat (discontinued) and the newer updated model called the Nintendo DS lite. For this article we will be mainly be referring the Nintendo DS lite system because it is superior in every respect to the original version.
When you first look at the Nintendo DS lite you’ll notice that is has two LCD screens, at first this does seem unusual and you might think you’ll need two pairs of eyes to use it. Don’t worry though your current pair of eyes is more than enough. The lower screen uses touch technology which allows you to interact with the DS games in much more detail; typically you’ll be using a plastic stylus to tap the screen with but you could use your finger like you would with an iPhone or iPod touch, beware of the fingerprints though. The top screen is not touch enabled but identical visually to the lower.
Another of the favourite DS features is the built in rechargeable battery that charges from a standard mains outlet saving you a fortune in AA batteries.
A standalone DS lite costs just $129.99 and in a variety of cool colours – Metallic Rose, Cobalt/Black, Crimson/Black, Onyx, Metallic Silber, Polar White and Coral Pink.
Nintendo DS games are stored in special flash cards like those used with digital cameras, uniquely the Nintendo DS handhelds accepts two types; the regular DS game card and Gameboy Advance cards (these are games from a previous Nintendo portable console which can be also be played on a Nintendo DS – known as backwards compatibility). You can buy Nintendo DS games (and Gameboy Advance games) from many different retailers and there are a huge number to choose from in many different categories (genres). You can be jumping around magical lands with a hero like Mario, training your Brain with Dr. Kawashima, racing cars around fun tracks with the Wacky Races crew and many other fun activities that just make the Nintendo DS so great to own.
The NDS is truly a games console for everyone, here is a look at a selection of titles that would make great gifts for current DS owners in your family or games that would be perfect to buy as a starting point with a new Nintendo DS lite.
Games for the 7-12’s
The Nintendo DS is great for youngsters as there is hardly any setup, simply plug the game cart in, turn on and hey presto it’s ready. There is also a wide range of games for younger age groups which star all their favourite cartoon characters and TV show stars.
- Disney Club Penguin: Elite Penguin Force – A fun title packed with mini games featuring the famous group of Elite Penguins.
- Mario Party DS – A virtual board game featuring Nintendo’s best loved characters such as; Mario, Peach, Yoshi and Wario. Lots of game boards and mini games to keep the kiddies occupied for ages.
Games for the 12-16’s
How about some games for the older kids?
- Pokémon Ranger: Shadows of Almia – Another adventure in the land of Pokémon with monsters to battle, capture and train as your own.
- Kirby Super Star Ultra – Japan’s favourite Nintendo mascot is now a massive hit in the States; it’s time for more fun with the kick ass pink ball who can do almost anything.
Games for 16+
The older gamers are always after new games, here are a selection of our favourites which should keep them amused for weeks.
- Mario Kart DS -Featuring classic racing gameplay of the original Mario Kart from Super Nintendo but with the all characters and tracks from newer Mario Kart games. With online play too!
- Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures – What self respecting adult doesn’t love the Indiana Jones movies? Recreate all the fun of the films on your DS but this time everything is made from Lego!
- Chrono Trigger DS -This classic 13 year old role playing game returns once more and it’s not for the faint hearted. Chrono Trigger is a difficult adventure for advanced players only.
Games for OAP’s
Get off the DS kids as Gran wants to train her brain and stay out of that nursing home for a few more years yet -here are a couple of titles for the older gamer.
- Brain Age -Keep your brain and response time in check with a daily workout or math, language and logic puzzles.
- Brain Age 2 -Even more brain training activities for those looking to move onto more advanced puzzles every day.
Nintendo DS Accessories
Where would we be without extra accessories for our gadgets? The Nintendo DS Lite travel kit has everything you need for under $15 and features lots of nice little extras to make your DS life more accessible:
- 12 Volt power adaptor
- Game Case
- Screen cleaner
- Wrist Strap
- Screen Protector
- Stylus extender pen