I Wish Nintendo Would Bring Back StreetPass
Last month, I visited PAX East in Boston and had a New Nintendo 3DS XL on my “things to bring this year” checklist. I honestly don’t remember the last time I was part of a kit while traveling, but I do remember being disappointed by how few StreetPass notifications I picked up after the Nintendo Switch PAX East. Rather, I brought it as a scientific experiment. I wanted to see if the plaza could welcome some new guests during the day.
I have been going to PAX East in Boston every year since 2013. long time no see. Early on, I scraped together all the spare cash I had, hit the hotel floor, ate nothing but $9 con sausages twice a day, and fell in love with the splendor and the sights. Some of my fondest memories of being outside (and now inside) the gaming industry are tied to PAX East. It’s about time! If you haven’t already, please prioritize. trust me!
In the 3DS’ heyday, wearing one while walking around the floor or sitting on a panel almost got you out of control. . People in the hall flock to his one of the most unusual power outlets to charge their 3DS and meet new guests passing by at Plaza Gate. At the time, it was her Mii wearing a rare but necessary color to unlock enough pieces to complete one of his many 3D puzzles, or to outrun monsters in Mii Quest. It was easy to find.
So many people passed each other, giving each other the equivalent of Nintendo’s digital high five. The thrill of meeting them all was worth sitting down and cycling through Plaza Gate about every hour. I’ve never completed a map of America, but I have a passing from far away Japan. 99% of that comes from visiting PAX East over the years. In the 3DS heyday, my maps and puzzles would have been much more substantial had I attended other events such as Gamescom or his PAX West.
Nor did I mention 3DS games with StreePass features like Bravely Default. This allows you to collect townspeople or summon other players you pass by to aid in combat. All around great and fun features that can be very useful and a great way to make you feel part of a community.
So at PAX East 2023, I charged my 3DS and carried it around all day. A few hours later, when I opened the bag and looked inside, the light in the front corner of my 3DS glowed green, signaling a new guest at the Plaza. I was over the moon I met 6 new people on StreetPass.To my surprise, one of my StreetPass guests was someone I met at a previous PAX.
After wandering the floor for a few more hours, I checked again and was thrilled to find that 10 visitors were waiting to be greeted. Years ago I would have fast forwarded greetings, but this time I got a taste of it. I rolled my eyes back and forth as I read their greetings and dreams, admired their hats, and coveted some of the less common text backgrounds they had acquired. I also saw a NES cartridge-style text background that I had never seen before. It was so beautiful and pure.
After a while, I checked again. The lights turned green again and there was one person waiting for me to say hello to them.Once I let them in the plaza, Mii put her hand to her forehead and looked around her. Later she went through the gate. With a touch of grief, she realized my little Mii may never see others waiting for her visit.
I want Nintendo to revive StreetPass to some extent. People line up to throw money at bracelets and catch Pokemon, but whether they do the same for the chance to unlock puzzle pieces or run past enemies in Mii-only games. I don’t know. Building the feature into the Switch looks like it could work, but the Switch doesn’t fit in your pocket as easily as the 3DS, and the Switch’s battery life isn’t on par with the Nintendo 3DS.
I’m glad I had a 3DS during the heyday of StreetPass, and I’d love to see Nintendo bring the 3DS back on their next console, but I’m not holding my breath. Nintendo’s handheld-only days seem to be over. The Switch and its hybrid design became the third best-selling video game console of all time. And famously, it surprises us with both the old features and games that Nintendo brings back, and the features and games that seemingly disapproving (is there a lot of Mother 3?).
There are some unfinished puzzles, so PAX West and… Tyler, the Creator concert.