The day the Nintendo Switch was announced, we said the Nintendo 3DS basically had an expiration date and would be done a year after release. We got a lot of grief for that, and hey, we understand. People love the 2DS/3DS series of portable consoles, and we do too! But the reality is that when Nintendo made a better console that was also portable, there was no way that company was going to invest money in two that do the same thing in the biggest areas that count. Production had already been stopped in Japan for the console as they focused on the Switch, but today we're learning that the entire line has now been discontinued.
The news comes from Nintendo's Japanese site as some eagle-eyed gamers caught the translation showing that all of the 3DS systems appeared to be discontinued and unavailable for purchase, despite being listed on the site as if you could get them in a store. The news was later confirmed by James Batchelor via Gamesindustry.biz, who got the statement below from Nintendo confirming the news.
"We can confirm that the manufacturing of the Nintendo 3DS family of systems has ended," a spokesperson said. "Nintendo and third-party games for the Nintendo 3DS family of system will continue to be available in Nintendo eShop, on Nintendo.com and at retail.
"The existing library of more than 1,000 Nintendo 3DS games contains many critically acclaimed titles and can provide years of content to explore and enjoy."
The spokesperson added: "We currently have no plans to end any existing online services for the Nintendo 3DS family of systems. Online play and Nintendo eShop will continue to be available and it will be possible to access and redownload all previously purchased content in the foreseeable future."
The company had already rolled back production on games, even though there were still independent companies making titles for the console. A few had been released in 2019, but best we can tell there's been nothing in 2020 that's officially approved by Nintendo. The news seems to have also affected the 2DS lines, at least, on the Japanese website. There are still retailers selling both consoles here in the U.S. as it appears they still have stock left.