New Nintendo 2DS XL: release date, news and features


The New Nintendo 2DS XL is the next hardware revision of Nintendo’s handheld, the 3DS, which has been available since 2011. 

As its name implies, the New Nintendo 2DS XL strips out the 3D display found in the 3DS’s that have preceded it, but will nevertheless be able to play all of the same games as the previous consoles, albeit in 2D. 

In this way it’s very similar to the original 2DS, the main change being that it now has a hinge between its two screens allowing it to fold up when you’re not using it. 

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? Nintendo’s new budget-focussed 3DS console...without the 3D
  • When is it out? July 28 in the US and UK and June 15 in Australia
  • How much will it cost? $149.99 / AU$199.95 / UK pricing tba

New Nintendo 2DS XL release date

Nintendo has announced that the New 2DS XL will be launched on July 28 in the US and UK, just under five months after the launch of the Nintendo Switch in those territories. 

Interestingly, although the territory has often had to wait much longer for hardware releases, the New 2DS XL is coming to Australia over a month earlier on June 15. 

In Australia this means that the console is coming out just over three months after the Switch - talk about a fast turnaround.

New Nintendo 2DS games

The New Nintendo 2DS XL, in the same way as the original 2DS, will be able to play the entire 3DS games catalogue, despite lacking the 3D functionality of the original handheld. 

Although its 3D functionality was a major part of the original console’s appeal, it provided little more than window dressing to its games, and could be turned off via a slider on the side of the handheld. 

This means that all of the 3DS’s games are more than capable of being played in 2D, and you shouldn’t miss out on too much of the original experience by playing them without their third-dimension. 

In fact, some recent games, such as Pokémon Sun and Moon, has eschewed the 3D functionality entirely, meaning that you’re getting exactly the same experience whether you play it on a 3DS or 2DS. 

The New 2DS XL is also powerful enough to play those games that were exclusive to the New 3DS, such as Xenoblade Chronicles, which were not playable on the old 2DS. 

Although the console has been out for a few years now, it’s still seeing regular releases. The console’s release will come alongside two games, Hey! Pikmin and Miitopia, in the US. 

Recent releases have included Super Mario Maker for the 3DS, and last year’s best-selling Pokémon Sun and Moon. 

New Nintendo 2DS XL colors

So far two color-schemes for the new console have been announced. In both the US and Australia gamers will be able to enjoy the console in black and turquoise, while the latter territory will also enjoy a white and orange color-scheme. 

Between the exclusive color-scheme and the early release date, Australia seems to be getting a pretty sweet deal with the new hardware. 

New Nintendo 2DS XL C-stick

The New Nintendo 2DS XL will feature the C-stick (ie a right analogue stick) found on the New Nintendo 3DS. 

The 3DS’s C-stick started its life as an add-on for the original 3DS (called the Circle Pad Pro), but was integrated into the console properly with the New 3DS revisions, while it remained absent from the original 2DS. 

Its inclusion means that players on the new handheld should enjoy all the additional functionality of the extra analogue stick.

Battery life

The original 3DS had a battery life of 3-5 hours, which increased to 3.5-6 hours with the New 3DS, and to 3.5-5.5 hours with the original 2DS. 

Meanwhile the 3DS XL had a battery life of 3.5-5.5 hours, which increased to 3.5-7 hours with the 3.5-7 hours with the New 3DS XL. 

Nintendo hasn’t officially announced the battery life of the new console, but given the battery life of the previous handhelds our best guess is that it will be similar to the New 3DS XL’s 3.5-7 hours. 

However, given that the handheld would tend to use less battery when its 3D effect was turned off, we’d expect real-world battery life to skew closer to the upper end of that range, depending on the graphical intensity of the game in question. 

Importantly, the new handheld will include a power adaptor in the box. When the New 3DS was released, it controversially didn’t include one