With the introduction of the Nintendo 2DS to bolster the Nintendo 3DS line-up, it seems that the days of the Nintendo DS could be drawing to a close. But it turns out Nintendo still makes a couple of models of the hardware. You just might not see them in your neck of the woods.
“There are retailers that continue to carry [the] DSi and DSi XL today,” Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime told me during a phone interview earlier this week. “Typically you’ll be able to find more DSi XL [units] out in the marketplace. And typically that product will be priced at $US99.”
Fils-Aime made it clear that stores aren’t simply selling through existing DS stock. Nintendo still makes the last-gen handheld.
“We do continue to manufacture and to sell out to retail [the] DSi XL,” Fils-Aime said, referring to the plus-sized final iteration of the DS hardware. The DSi XL was first released in Japan in late 2009 and then in America, Europe and Australia the year after.
The DSi preceded the DSi XL and was released in 2008 in Japan and then in North America, Europe and Australia in 2009. It was Nintendo’s first online handheld and also the first version of the DS line to exclude a port for playing Game Boy Advance games.
“We also continue to manufacture and ship DSi to just a handful of US retailers but more broadly throughout Latin America,” Fils-Aime said.
The Nintendo DS launched in late 2004 and was followed by the Nintendo DS Lite in 2006. Both machines were hits, helping the DS line sell around 154 million units to date, making it easily the best-selling dedicated handheld of all time. Various news reports put the PlayStation 2’s sales as high as 155 million, but otherwise no gaming machine has outperformed the mighty DS.
If the DSi and DSi XL are the only DS units that Nintendo still makes then that means that Nintendo no longer manufactures machines that can play GBA games.
The Nintendo 3DS and 2DS both play DS games, so even if the DS hardware is slowly fading away, the DS software line-up is still relevant. If you never played a DS game but are interested, please check out this list of our 12 favourite DS games.