Nintendo of America’s Online Store has just started offering a new product. Well, it’s new, but also old. You can now buy a used 3DS directly from the publisher. At the moment, there are two options available. You can either get a 3DS alone, in Aqua Blue or Midnight Purple, for $129.99, or one of those two systems and a copy of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D for $169.98. The question is, should you?
Nintendo is guaranteeing that every used 3DS it sells will be fully functional. When you buy one, you will get a working system. It could have minor cosmetic blemishes, but those could be covered easily enough with a 3DS skin. Each will also come with a one year warranty, just like a new 3DS, meaning if something does go wrong, Nintendo will step up and make things right. If you purchase a used 3DS from another retailer, say GameStop or an independent store, you can probably get a system in comparable condition, but will not get any kind of warranty unless you are willing to pay extra for it. That’s a definite point in Nintendo’s favor.
However, it’s the price that really makes a used 3DS from Nintendo really look appealing. While I’ve seen used 3DS units at places like Disc Replay and Half Price Books for at least $129.99, usually more. GameStop’s standard price for a used 3DS is $159.99. You may be able to find one cheaper on eBay or Amazon, but when you’re going through the mail like that, you still risk not knowing what the final product will look like. With Nintendo, you’re getting the aforementioned, guaranteed item for a reasonable price.
You probably shouldn’t go with the used 3DS that includes a new copy of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D, however. That bundle price isn’t doing you any favors. The game is $39.99 normally. The price of the $169.98 bundle is exactly that of the $129.99 used 3DS and the $39.99 new game. It’s pretty easy to find that game used for $25, perhaps even less.
What a lot of people neglect to factor into prices is shipping. You don’t need to worry if you buy a used 3DS from Nintendo. You’ll spend at least $5 for standard shipping, and at most $17 for UPS Red. I’d recommend going with the $10 UPS Blue, because this is a premium item you’re buying and you want to make sure it reaches your home safely.
After going over everything, I think the answer is clearly yes. You should consider the Nintendo Online Store if you are looking to buy a used 3DS. You’re getting a working unit with a year’s warranty at a reasonable price, and won’t be paying a ridiculous amount to have it shipped to your house. So long as you’re okay with only getting a blue or purple model, it’s fine. Avoid the offer that includes The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D though, as you can get that game cheaper elsewhere.
Product Page [Nintendo Online Store]