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Why You Should Buy a Nintendo 2DS Now

On May 20, Nintendo will officially drop the price of its 2DS handheld from $100 to $80. That's one of the best deals in gaming right now, and if you've been looking for a portable console, it's time to pull the trigger.

Credit: Nintendo

(Image credit: Nintendo)

Gamers who missed out on Nintendo's handheld titles over the last few years should take a serious look at the 2DS. It plays all of the 3DS' games (but without the 3D effect), giving you access to an incredible lineup of titles on the cheap.

The 2DS has been considered to be a bit of a joke -- the hardware looks like a toy and, without the hinges, is less portable than the 3DS because it doesn't fold. For $80 and with Mario Kart 7 bundled in, however, it's not funny anymore. It's a damn good value.

MORE: Nintendo 3DS Games: Our Staff Favorites

A ton of Nintendo's most beloved franchises have great entries on the platform. Super Smash Bros. for 3DS, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, Animal Crossing: New Leaf, Pokémon X and Y, Super Mario 3D Land and Fire Emblem Fates are all playable on the 2DS.

Third-party developers haven't been sleeping on the system, either. Capcom's Professor Latyon vs Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney is a fun fusion of two franchises, Bravely Default and Bravely Second bring back the days of classic Japanese RPGs and indies like Shovel Knight and Shantae and the Pirate's Curse are available on the cheap to download in Nintendo's eShop. That's just a smattering of what's available.

There are still exciting titles on the way, too. The newest Pokémon games, Sun and Moon, are coming in November, as is a re-release of beloved RPG Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past. Even if Nintendo's upcoming NX, which is rumored to have both a console and handheld component, kills the 2DS and 3DS next year, you'll still have a huge backlog of titles to take on the go with you.

Nintendo's own games rarely get cheaper, even when you buy used. When their hardware drops in price, that's your best bet to get in on a budget. You won't be able to play in 3D with the 2DS, but the games are still great without that (heck, I prefer keeping it turned off). For $80 and a game thrown in, the 2DS is a steal.

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Andrew E. Freedman

Andrew E. Freedman is an editor at Tom's Hardware focusing on laptops, desktops and gaming as well as keeping up with the latest news. He holds a M.S. in Journalism (Digital Media) from Columbia University. A lover of all things gaming and tech, his previous work has shown up in Kotaku, PCMag, Complex, Tom's Guide and Laptop Mag among others.