News: The Nintendo eShop Now Supports Free Software From Third-Parties

eShopIt’s true that Nintendo’s been offering free software via its digital distribution service on the Nintendo 3DS since the launch of the Nintendo eShop – examples of this include Nintendo Video, Nintendo Letter Box, and even the games 3D Classics: Excitebike and Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition were free for a limited time.

In the past, however, third-parties have been forced to add a price tag to all of their published titles on the eShop, potentially deterring the likes of fun, quirky little apps as seen on Apple’s App Store.

Thankfully, Nintendo’s now changed its policies to now allow third-parties to bring their free apps and games to the Nintendo 3DS’s download service.

The first of these third-party apps launched on 5th July: Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games Virtual Card Album, with Square Enix following suit with a free Dragon Quest X companion app, which will allow you to view information about friends and characters, and products from the Travelers’ Bazaar.

Are there any other companion apps, or free ports of iOS games you’d like to see arrive on the eShop?

Source: Adriasang, via 3DSTribe

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News: Nintendo Letter Box Update, Mario & Sonic Virtual Card Album Now Live on eShop

Expansion app now available!

Nintendo UK’s going a little QR Code mad today, making two of the square little blighters exclusively available to its Twitter followers.

The first takes you into the Nintendo eShop, where you can download an update to the Nintendo Letter Box software. Whilst adding nothing monumental, you’ll be able to push the left or right button on the D-pad whilst writing a letter to change the colour of your ink. Spoilers – you can now write in red, blue, green, purple, orange, as well as the standard black ink.

The second QR Code takes you to the download page of the Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games Virtual Card Album, which was revealed by SEGA’s brand director of the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise.

Both downloads are free, so be sure to check out the eShop for these latest downloads, on top of this week’s bumper selection of games and DLC, as confirmed earlier this week.

News: Nintendo Direct 22/06/12 – Round-Up, Including 3DS XL Reveal!

E3 has only just been and gone, yet Nintendo couldn’t resist showing off their lovely presidents’ faces once more – this time to boast about a brand new, re-modelled Nintendo 3DS with huge screens and to give us some details regarding some upcoming games for 3DS, Wii and DS. Here’s our round-up of this morning’s events:

  • Europe’s presentation is now starting!
  • Thanks for making us feel so welcome, Iwata.
  • Time to hand of to Nintendo of Europe’s president, Satoru Shibata – “the European variety of Satoru” – to take over direct from Nintendo of Europe’s factory.
  • And we’re kicking off with New Super Mario Bros. 2… on a much bigger screen! Nintendo 3DS XL confirmed for Europe!
  • Nintendo’s handheld with the biggest screen ever. That red & black model looks gorgeous.
  • 4.88 inch upper screen. 90% larger screen, 46% larger console. Improved battery power adds 1-1.5 extra hours of playtime.
  • Will come bundled with a larger SD card than current 3DS models, but not include and AC adapter or charging cradle to keep costs down.
  • The launch date is ‘not far away’ – releasing next month on 28 July! Releasing in blue, red and silver.
  • New games coming on the same day to take advantage of the larger screen – Kingdom Hearts 3D is the first…
  • Free demos of Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance and Theatrhythm: Final Fantasy available from the Nintendo eShop in Europe NOW!
  • New Art Academy (‘New’ being a noun, not an adjective) coming to 3DS on July 28th to make use of the 3DS XL’s larger screens.
  • No way – a retail sequel to FreakyForms: Your Creations, Alive! announced, entitled FreakyForms Deluxe: Your Creations, Alive! Adds multiplayer and RPG elements; why couldn’t we get a sequel to Pullblox!?
  • In the RPG mode you explore dungeons, level up your Formees and defeat bosses.
  • Back to New Super Mario Bros. 2, the game’s releasing in Europe on 17th August via retails outlets and the Nintendo eShop.
  • A deep-voiced voice-over man is now explaining the methods you can use to collect as many coins as possible.
  • You can share your how many coins you’ve collected in-game via StreetPass, the ultimate goal apparently being 1,000,000.
  • The game will also have paid downloadable content some time after launch – will add extra Coin Rush stages.
  • SEGA’s Sonic brand director now has some exciting news regarding Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games
  • A new, free application called Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games Virtual Card Album will become available through the Nintendo eShop.
  • Offers virtual card collections which sees you using Nintendo Zone hotspots, StreetPass and other methods to fill your collection.
  • You also get a ‘special card’ for completing your collection, but the ones distributed via hotspots will only be available until September.
  • Nintendo announced 20% discount on best-selling games on the Nintendo eShop, which will last for two weeks.
  • Inazuma Eleven Strikers coming to Wii in Europe on 28th September, just as we suspected.
  • Pokémon Black and White 2 coming this Autumn, as well as Pokémon Dream Radar and Pokédex 3D Pro on the same day, but we already knew that.
  • English gameplay of the DS games asks you the most important question of all – “Are you a boy or are you a girl?”
  • Pokémon Typing Adventure is also coming to Nintendo DS – includes bluetooth keyboard which is compatible with other devices… such as Wii U, maybe?
  • Arriving in Europe in September.
  • Nintendo’s finally remembered that Heroes of Ruin actually exists and has decided to show off a trailer – “37 Cool Things About Heroes of Ruin.”
  • We’d love to list them all, but alas…
  • One of said 37 cool things is “3D TREES!”
  • New trailer now – “Professor Layton comes to Nintendo 3DS.”
  • Professor Layton and the Mask of Miracle is the first in the prequel trilogy, and is set to launch this November.
  • Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem news now!
  • Who said anything about good news? The games have been delayed, and are now on course to launch in early 2013.
  • Nintendo of Europe confirms that Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U and Nintendo 3DS will be co-developed by Namco Bandai.
  • Masahiro Sakurai remains the games’ producers, and will oversee development at Namco.
  • Head to www.nintendo.co.uk/nintendodirect to read messages from Sakurai and Namco Bandai’s Kobayashi.
  • Mario Tennis Open QR code, when scanned, unlocks ‘the most powerful character’ in the game – Metal Mario. You can find it here: http://yfrog.com/ntig8pp
  • Shibata’s now offers a reminder of the upcoming 3DS games we have to look forward to. Take a look here: http://yfrog.com/oc3prep/
  • And that’s a wrap! We hope to see you at the next one too, Shibata!

Wow! More exciting than E3 in its entirety?! Are you going to purchase the new Nintendo 3DS XL when it launches next month, or any of the games we’re too tired to recall the names of? Let us know! Oh, and don’t forget to download your free demos from the Nintendo eShop!