What the 3DS Successor could look like..

Just a couple days ago, Nintendo released a statement saying that they’re considering a possible 3DS successor. This disappointed many Switch fans as they wanted their Switch to become the one device. With their marketing of the Switch and bringing over 3DS-only franchises to the Switch they backed themselves into a bit of a dillema. Since that just thinking about it, if a dedicated handheld comes it probably won’t arrive until at least 2021 which paves for a lot more options in technology. Let’s get started!

Option 1:

Make a single screen handheld that is essentially a Switch but shrunk down to a more pocketable size. It would have a 720p screen or 480p screen. A 720p screen would create an incredible PPI of 294 PPI and 480p would have a worse one but still respectible of 196 PPI. A 480p screen makes a whole lot of sense but it would take more work for developers as the games already on the Switch platform are already made for 720p. If Nintendo requires apps to be updated many games would be uncompatible with the Switch Mini because of the lack of the developers wanting to put in time.


This will most likely be marketed as a Switch Mini or something similar and would have the ability to play Nintendo Switch Games. However, the Switch name doesn’t really make sense as it would have non-detachable Joy-Cons and would lack the ability to be docked thus removing the whole point of it being called a Nintendo ‘Switch’. This thing would ship with a Tegra X1 and would be probably air in the sub-$200 range (possibly $150-$199.99) and like the 2DS would have its price dropped over time. For the people saying this could possibly the Switch keep in mind this would probably be released around or a bit before a Nintendo Switch revision thus removing that concern.

Option 2:

Make a dual screen handheld similar to the style of the DS and 3DS. This thing would probably also come with a Tegra X1 just like Option 1. If not an X1 a K1 or Tegra 4 would also be pretty likely. Neither the K1 or the X1 are any slouches with the K1 being found in NVIDIA’s own Shield K1 tablet and the X1 being found in the Nintendo Switch and NVIDIA’s TV Boxes.

Backwards Compatibility:

This thing would probably have hardware backwards compatibility with 3DS games and maybe DS games but that is more skeptical based on systems such as it would require three processors and systems like the DS didn’t bother putting in a GameBoy processor. Though again their chips are so old and weak (the ARM11 came out in 2006, and even when the 3ds came out it was already 5 years old..) they may be cheap enough just to throw in the system after all (the 3DS did contain an ARM7 processor for GBA games even if it never really used it).


The successor’s resolution could simply double the 4DS’s display making it have a 800×480 resolution and 640×480 resolution for the top and bottom screen respectively. This would make a PPI (for the top) of 196 (for the XL model) which is much more than the New 3DS XL’s 99 (not including the ‘3D’ feature). Unlike the original 3DS, the new successor would likely not include 3D as shown by the success of the ‘2DS’models. Another option, is to switch the aspect ratio like they did from DS to 3DS and give us either a 16:9 720p display (which admittedly seems awfully high) or change it to a 4:3 640×480 display. I’m not sure how likely a 720p display is though but that would be very nice! (and create a 300PPI display on the XL models imagine just the regular).


If the Switch didn’t exist, this would probably be the most likely option. I have no idea what this thing could be called but 4DS is all of our logical guesses (like the Xbox One –> Xbox Two).

The main problem with this thing is the problem with exclusives with Nintendo already promising games like Fire Emblem and Pokemon on the Switch. Would the games be released on both platforms? If this thing comes out it would most likely be released closer to 2022 or 2023.

Option 3:

Make a low powered Switch.

This one is very similar to the first one but this time it’ll be a bit of a downgrade. Option 1 and 2 honestly seem more likely than this one but we’ll still explore this. This’ll be similar to the Option 1 and will have a 5″ with a resolution 480p. Similar to Option #1, the joycons will not be detatchable and will lack the ability to be docked. The main thing to make this cheap, however is the lack of a more powerful processor. This thing would probably come with a Tegra 4 or K1 as I mentioned earlier which is no slouch but would be a problem when the games are already built for a Tegra X1. That’s really it for my ideas for this one.

With hopes of a 3DS successor possibly coming, we have many years of rumors and speculation before these devices come out at least 3 years from now. If you didn’t know, the reason why I gave all of these processors NVIDIA chips instead of something similar is because of a licensing deal Nintendo has with NVIDIA. Anyway, enjoy your day and thanks for exploring the possibilites of a 3DS successor with me!


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