3DS Adventures: Take It To The Streets

September 9, 2011

Today I want to talk about a new addiction of mine. And I warn, the euphoric hit I get from it is going to sound completely ridiculous unless you have had the pleasure of experiencing something like it for yourself.

My new drug is the Nintendo 3DS’s Streetpass system. This little handheld has proven its worth to me a thousand times over, especially during last week’s power outage, and thanks to my car charger I was able to keep it juiced up everywhere I went.

But I guess what started the obsession actually happened a while before this. One day, I was at the mall shopping for a pair of yoga pants, and when I looked down into my purse and — BAM! — there was that little green light on my 3DS telling me I’d gotten a tag. Someone in the last few minutes had passed by me with their own 3DS, and in that split second our two systems had traded information. I opened up my 3DS, checked out my Mii Plaza and saw to my surprise I had actually tagged not one but two people during my short time at the store.

It was that moment I became hooked. When I had first heard about Streetpass, it sounded like a pretty cool feature BUT OH GOD YOU WON’T HAVE ANY IDEA HOW AWESOME IT FEELS UNTIL IT HAPPENS TO YOU!!!

With wireless communication turned on and your 3DS in sleep mode, it will automatically send data about your Mii and the games you’ve played to people you meet on your travels (who also have their Streetpass enabled), and vice versa. I’ve since developed a habit of taking the 3DS with me whenever I go out. Every time I see that green light, I get all giddy. Unreasonably, excessively so.

It still doesn’t happen as often as I like, but I’m hoping news like August’s 260% increase in 3DS sales and today’s launch of the new “flame red” 3DS will mean more Streetpass opportunities in the future. These days, I seem to have the most luck at the mall, where I get at least one tag every time I go, even if it is just “Mike the Gamestop guy”.

Game and electronic stores are almost guaranteed to give you a hit, and I’m sure if I went to a gaming or comic convention in the city I’d be in heaven picking up random people left and right (wait…that didn’t really sound right…) but to me, that’s a little like bamboozling the system. I much prefer the random Streetpasses that I get by simply going about my daily life, the encounters that some people in the community have taken to calling “wild Miis”. Leave it to Nintendo fans to make everything a Pokemon reference.

Ever since my husband traded in my old DS Lite for a 3DS of his own, things have also gotten a lot more interesting. Our systems tag each other every morning without fail as he makes his way to work, and the thing is, once you encounter someone more than once you can choose to leave custom personal messages to each other. And yes, in case you’re wondering, we do leave each other intimate notes — turns out there’s just enough space for “Buy more milk!” but not enough for “It’s recycling day!”


  1. So what info gets passed?

    • Stuff like new features in games that you own (and you don’t need the cartridge in the console at the time), and the Miis (like, your Nintendo avatar) of 3DS users.

      For example, Nintendogs will allow you to exchange gifts (items from the game) and unlock new breeds. Super Street Fighter will allow you to have a battle to collect trophies from the other player, some racing game will send ghost data and you can race against the other person’s best time, etc. Stuff like that! Oh, and it’s a choice whether or not you want to enable it. I should find a link for the article.

  2. How funny. I have yet to get a Streetpass tag, but I don’t carry it around nearly enough. I’m glad you are both enjoying yours.

    Time to head off to the mall. 🙂

    • Husband got a tag tonight when we went to pick up Starfox…but for some reason, mine didn’t pick theirs up, even though we were standing together and our systems were right by each other *cry*

  3. I should be getting my 3DS very soon! Does leaving it in sleep mode run down the battery much? I’m going to be very curious if I’ll be able to catch any tags at any of the places I go. I’d be *extremely* surprised if it happened at the office. I don’t know of anyone else there who has a handheld system at all, much less a 3DS. 🙂

    • Surprisingly, the 3DS battery can last for days when in sleep mode. When I’m actively playing though, it doesn’t last for more than a few hours. I just make sure to charge it every night so when I chuck it in my bag in sleep mode during the day I know I’ll always have enough power for the Streetpass to keep chugging away sniffing out other 3DSs ^_^

  4. This actually makes me want a 3DS. Doubt I’d get a lot of hits in my office, in my apartment, or scootering back and forth betwixt the two. However, that does sound cool as heck.

    • Yeah, haven’t gotten any luck in my neighborhood, and my husband hasn’t gotten any from his work…though maybe one day it’s possible he might get one in traffic 😛 Always just the commercial areas so far — one time even in a restaurant. I should take mine downtown one day and see what happens.

  5. My 3DS came yesterday and I brought it to work and to the grocery store today, but didn’t get any hits. Maybe by some stroke of luck I’ll get a hit bringing it to karate tomorrow night. On a good note, I’ve earned a few coins from the pedometer thingee. 🙂

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