Click to viewGizmodo reader Phil Nolan, a profesional 3D modeler and animator, got inspired by our Nintendo DS 2 mock-up and wish list and sent us his cool version of this dreamed-up third iteration of the Nintendo DS. It looks so yummy inside that I want to get it out for a date:
As you can see, he took the original design and added a whole lot of the iPhone and the PSP. Looks quite good to me, even while it still has some unresolved issues, like the hinge, which can't be like the MacBook because it will block the shoulder buttons. Still, a very doable, even slimmer form factor than the Lite which can perfectly fit all the not-so-crazy features we thought could make it to the next revision of the Nintendo portable console.
And before the anti-Apple camp gets up in arms, let's not forget that the original DS got redesigned with a clear inspiration on the Apple's all-white, all-shiny, all-simplicity iPod design. People didn't think the same could be done with the original DS and look what happened with the Lite.
Some more thoughts from the "buts" that people claimed about the first 2D mock-up:
"But the screen on top should be the same size"
Not necessarily. For compatibility, you can play original DS games letterboxed. Even new games could retain exactly the same format and keep backward compatibility if you want. The top wide-screen, however, could be used very well in most games. But specially, for media playback.
"But the it should be a totally new concept. Nintendo broke the rules and will do it again in the next generation"
That may be true, but the True Next Generation is years away. It took decades for Nintendo to change the paradigm of the original Gameboy to the Nintendo DS. Until the latter arrived, the first went through many iterations, each adding more things: smaller package, more power, color, backlighting, etc.
They milked the cow until it was dead. Then, they reinvented themselves with the DS. The next DS will be an evolution of power and features, not of basic concepts. It works great now, it sells like crazy, so you don't need to change it dramatically just yet. Nintendo just needs to keep the distance with the PSP and that will be it.
"But it will be too expensive to make"
Like I said in the original mock-up article, given the sinking prices of current components thanks to the proliferation of smartphones like the iPhone or multimedia players, a DS 2 with shaved corners, better screens and built-in multimedia playback will be very doable in 2008. Granted, it may not take this shape, but it will happen sooner than later.
"But it doesn't have Advance cart compatibility"
With downloadable games coming to the DS and dirty-cheap Flash RAM prices, the next version of the DS will probably have Virtual Console emulation, just like the Wii. Why deal with hardware when you can have it all in software?