Price of Nintendo's portable game player is portable too: It moves down

The price of the 2DS player will drop $30 on August 30, making the cost of the gadget a hundred bucks.

Don Reisinger
Don Reisinger
Former CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
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Nintendo's 2DS, complete with Mario Kart 7, will soon be available for a C-note. Nintendo

Nintendo's 2DS portable gaming device will soon be a little cheaper.

Starting August 30, the 2DS will drop to $100 from its current price of $130, according to an announcement Thursday from the company, owner of some of the best-known video game franchises of all time. At the $130 price, Nintendo tosses in a copy of cart-racing title Mario Kart 7. It will continue to include the game free after the price cut.

Launched in October 2013, the Nintendo 2DS is pitched to first-time gamers. The device comes with two screens and has Internet connectivity, letting gamers play against each other over the Web.

The 2DS has been met with some controversy over the years, due in large part to it being viewed as an ancillary part of Nintendo's portable strategy. The Japanese gaming giant's main portable, the 3DS, comes with a clamshell design and with 3D gaming that doesn't require special glasses. Most portable games are developed for the 3DS, making it the company's flagship portable device.

The 2DS nixes the 3D feature and the clamshell design. It does, however, work with nearly the entire library of 3DS games, and it also supports most of the games available on Nintendo's first dual-screen portable, the Nintendo DS.

Still, it's unlikely that any price cut will have a major impact on Nintendo's standing in the mobile-gaming space. Many more people now turn to smartphones and tablets for their mobile-gaming fix, realizing that they can play many of the same games on a device that comes with far more features. The 2DS, like the 3DS and even Sony's own portable, the PlayStation Vita, stubbornly stick to an old style of portable gaming in which players buy dedicated game devices to play titles on the go.

Nintendo finally acknowledged the changing mobile-gaming landscape in March after it announced that it would start building games that work with the software that powers mobile phones, such as Apple's iOS operating system and Google's Android OS. While the move marked a significant shift in policy for Nintendo, which has previously snubbed mobile OSes, the company said it would continue to offer portable devices, like the 2DS.

Nintendo did not immediately respond to a request for comment.