I picked up my 3DS at GameStop's midnight launch, and have been dinking around with it ever since. There were quite a lot of questions I had about the system and its pack-in software that the internet hadn't yet managed to answer, so I've managed to collect quite an array of tidbits here.

First and foremost, holy crap at the DPI on this lower screen. It's higher resolution than the vanilla DS screen and wow does it show. I'm actually more impressed by this than I am by the 3D. Anti-aliased text in the DSi menus always just looked kind of crummy, but things are so crisp and fabulous here on the 3DS. The on-screen keyboard in particular is just delicious. I went back to the DSi to try some stuff afterward and almost had to turn away, so terrible were its gigantic pixels.

That resolution bump is both a blessing and a curse though, since when I popped in Pokémon White to see how the upscaling looked... let's just say I second those recommending that you keep your DSi around if you still want to play DS games. The pixel-match mode you get by holding start/select while booting a DS game certainly fixes most of the blurriness (though colors are still a tad bit washed out) but it's really like playing on a DS Micro at that point.

The first time I noticed the upscaling wasn't with Pokémon though, it was when I tried to transfer my Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection settings and account from my DSi. People who have moved from DS to DS lite to DSi like me are surely familiar with the process, you send a bundle of data from your old DS to your new one and effectively transfer its soul so you can keep playing your online games without having to start over. I am thrilled to report that it indeed works when you send this packet over to the 3DS, but the 3DS uses the original DS's download play interface, complete with analog clock and calendar on the top screen, and it is almost hilariously blurry. I think crisp pixel-designed things will suffer the most from this upscaling, but polygonal games may weather the stretching more gracefully.

This thing is in 3D though did you know that. I've been so enamored with the pack-in software and firmware that I haven't even broken the plastic on the games I bought (Pilotwings Resort and Steel Diver; the 3DS boxes are actually thinner than DS ones how about that, and I like the iconography on their spines), so at the moment my favorite use of 3D has got to be when you suspend a title and have it fade into the background of the screen. It's a really slick and crisp layering effect, and makes the system feel pretty powerful.

I think I am feeling a tiny bit of eye fatigue though. I keep the slider at max because anything less feels like it's not really worth it, and now on my computer typing this I swear I am seeing 3D effects in what is definitely a 2D monitor. Last night after playing around with it my windows all seemed to be popping out a bit, so I think I might actually be going a little bit insane.

The 3D is nice though, I like it. I do feel like sometimes I'd be happy turning it off, which is fine. I played Super Street Fighter 4 3D on a demo unit at GameStop last night and I preferred the 60fps 2D mode to the 30fps 3D one. It just suited a game like that in general, but Street Fighter is also a game where you're really gonna be wailing on that system, and it'll make you constantly lose the sweet spot for the 3D.

Did you know that when you suspend a game with the Home button, you can hit L or R to take photos without having to shut down the game? The camera counts as a top-row interface item when it comes to being able to use it without actually quitting your game. I think it's a great idea for the camera really, it's much more useful if you can snap shots of things when you have the 3DS out without having to save and quit whatever you're doing.

You can take "photos" of the notes you take in the Notes application, too. Just screenshots really, but it'll save them in the Photo app. So that helps with the 16-note limit in the Notes app itself. Speaking of that Photo app, I was also able to transfer all of the photos from my DSi to the 3DS without any trouble. Just put the SD card in the DSi, loaded them on, and stuck it in the 3DS. It read them with no problem.

I am a little bummed out that the 3DS doesn't fit in my DS case very well, though. Those extra millimeters of thickness are just enough to make it a reeeally tight fit, enough so that I'm probably in the market for a new case.

I made a Mii of myself, and it dosn't look as good as the one I made on the Wii. At least, I don't think it does. I might just be too attached to that old Mii, however more "accurate" this new one might be. The extra freedom you have with the new pieces and the ability to stretch and squash them kind of encourages you to make your Mii less caricatured, but it's probably a good idea to not go in that direction.

What I love to death immediately after doing it is the QR-code scanning for importing Miis. I imported codes of Yamauchi, Iwata, and Miyamoto and the speed at which they got scanned and LEPT out of the code all KYAAAAA!!!! was just shocking and amazing. This is the future right here, let me tell you. I'd post my QR code but I am not COMPLETELY happy with my Mii yet so I might once I've given it some more tweaking.

Click for full-size image, if you can't scan from this one

That charge dock's mysteries have finally been laid bare before me. In particular I've always wanted to see what EXACTLY happens when you depress the trigger on the base. It extends two metal prongs that stick into the 3DS to charge it, which I knew, but I wondered how they didn't catch on it when you try to lift it up. Turns out even when they're extended, they're rounded on the end, and can be pushed back in without the trigger being released. So they kind of slide against the back of the system then click in when they can. They're very accommodating.

This thing is accumulating dust like nobody's business though. The top screen specifically. It reminds me of one of my monitors at home here which is a glossy screen that's almost impossible to wipe dust off of. Dust is really very noticeable when the 3D is on, so that kinda sucks. I've got a little string-like imperfection in the lower-right corner of the screen, too, which is invisible in 2D but sticks out a bit in 3D. Why must I be constantly plagued by tiny annoyances.

I wish there was still an alarm in here. I'm going out of town in like an HOUR and I wanted to use it as an alarm in my hotel room but oh well I guess I'll just use a dumb old clock. And why is there a device in this day and age that doesn't have a daylight savings time option. Come on.

So this is all pretty stream-of-consciousness I know but really that's all I've got for you guys. I feel like I've barely cracked the surface of this thing, and it's just a torrent of little data-points in my mind so far. Overall though it's super-slick, this 3DS. It feels very modern, very capable, very Not A Piece Of Junk. I look forward to actually putting a game in there at some point!