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My first game system was an Atari 2600. Sure, it's still my favorite, but after a few years on the Atari, we moved to Nintendo - just in time for Super Mario Bros. 3 to come out. Complete with the Tanooki suit, we were SO excited. We stuck with that Nintendo for ages, got our own GameBoys, and I bought a Nintendo 64 to take to university with me. We got a Wii not long before Mad Natter was born, and a WiiU this past spring, starting the fine tradition of a childhood of Nintendo all over again for Mad Natter.
After a string of children's handhelds (the MobiGo, Leapster Explorer and InnoTab spring immediately to mind) failed to really keep Mad Natter's attention for more than one car trip, we needed something new. Something that wouldn't see him playing all his available games to the point of boredom within eight hours. And thus, the gift of the Nintendo 2DS
Mad Natter got the handheld for Christmas. He was inseparable from it all day. Same with Boxing Day. Now that it's been a month, the shine has mostly worn off, but he still loves his GameBoy. Granted, he still has trouble remembering that he has more than one game, but hey. He'll get there. So far, while this isn't the most educational of toys, Mad Natter's cognitive age has pushed him right out of the ability to enjoy traditional edutainment. So now, his games work on things like practicing to get better, not winning the first time every time, and how to not be a poor loser. I can do nothing but approve of this.
The system itself is fairly durable, meaning it doesn't feel like it's going to break at one mishandle, and the games for the old DS and the 3DS all work in his 2DS. Even better, it runs on a rechargable battery, which means the days of needing a twenty-pack of AA batteries (or worse, AAA!) to travel are over.
He also has the ability to connect to wifi (with parental controls), and therefore connect to Netflix on his own. The 2DS also supports YouTube, but without having immediate parental supervision, I'm not installing that one. I don't want to send him off into the cesspool that YouTube can be without someone there to pull him back if things get out of hand. Also for Christmas, we got Mad Natter a Super Mario Bros Folio Case for that 2DS, which holds both the unit and the games - as well as all the cables and such - in a single portfolio, which makes it super easy to travel with, and for him to find all his games at a moment's notice.
I was worried about his getting a GameBoy. I didn't want it to end up smashed, dunked, or otherwise dead by six-year-old. Turns out, it was a baseless worry, and I should have gotten one for him much sooner. He's happy and occupied, and learning lessons Mom alone just can't seem to teach - maybe because Mom is inherently uncool somehow...
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