Note: The following giveaway is open to Canadians only.
Years ago, when I first became a mom, I had an idealist view of how I would parent – and how my boys would flourish and grow. I’ll make their baby food from scratch! I promised. No television for my boys! I declared. And the kicker – They’ll never, ever be caught with those dreadful handheld gaming devices!
Well, I didn’t make baby food from scratch. And Lord knows I can sing the theme song from almost every Disney Junior show, so there’s that. But I held out on avoiding video game systems for as long as possible, wrongfully assuming that every child who encounters them instantly becomes addicted. Not true at all.
In fact, I found that introducing my boys to the Nintendo 3DS XL has had a very positive effect on their cognitive skills, such as spatial navigation, reasoning, memory and perception. Additionally, I’ve absolutely seen an improvement in their social skills, like sharing, compromise and offering encouragement (although we do have a tug-of-war over the device from time to time, but they’re siblings and it’s to be expected). All in all, you could say that my opinion of handheld gaming systems has changed incredibly over the past few months.
So what’s all the fuss about? The Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo 3DS XL systems feature a stereoscopic 3D display on the upper screen to give objects within the game world a feeling of space and depth. It becomes easier to see the position of characters and obstacles, making many game experiences even more intuitive for all types of players.
(Since the boys are still young, we disable the 3D effect thanks to a built-in 3D Depth Slider, which allows us to adjust the intensity of the 3D settings on the Nintendo 3DS system.)
Of course, one feature we haven’t tried and are eager to as the boys grow: the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo 3DS XL systems can take photos in 3D. Capture eye-popping images of friends and family, have fun with filters like the Merge lens, or even use the system’s AR technology and included AR Cards to make Mii characters and Nintendo heroes appear in the real world. Très cool!
Now if you’re looking to join in the fun – at a wallet-friendly price – the Nintendo 2DS is a fabulous option. And starting today (April 22, 2014), you can pick up five of Nintendo’s most popular titles for the incredible price of $29.99 each. Titles included: Super Mario 3D Land, Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D, Super Mario Bros. 2, Animal Crossing: New Leaf and Mario Kart 7.
Not sure which one is for you? Compare Nintendo handhelds here.
So let’s talk about games. This month, the boys are trying their hand (pun intended) at Yoshi’s New Island. In the Yoshi’s New Island game, Yoshi moves from sidekick to hero in a platforming adventure on a new island with new power-ups. Traverse a wide variety of worlds to help Baby Mario reunite with his kidnapped brother.
• Discover a new island containing six worlds to explore, from slippery snow slopes to watery wonderlands – each filled with creative platforming challenges, rambunctious enemies and a ton of collectibles.
• Use Mega and Metal Eggdozers to find secrets and open up new areas. Launch a Mega Eggdozer to plow through the environment, or skillfully use the heavy Metal Eggdozer to roll over enemies or explore underwater areas.
• Watch Yoshi transform into different vehicles, including a helicopter, submarine and mine cart. All vehicles can be controlled using the gyroscopic controls of the Nintendo 3DS system.
• When Yoshi acquires a certain type of Star in some stages, he can power up and become “Super Yoshi.” He’ll fly like a shooting star through the sky or temporarily be able to run along walls and ceilings.
• The game has a special aid for newcomers to action games. If players are having trouble getting through a stage, they might see the appearance of Flutter Wings, which let Yoshi spout wings and fly through the air.
• Stages do not have a set time limit, so players can take their time exploring as they progress through the peaceful world of Egg Island.
Sounds like fun? Why not experience it all for yourself! One lucky reader will win a Nintendo 2DS with Yoshi’s New Island (total value $175.00). To enter, simply fill the form below with your qualifying entries. Good luck all!