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Pokemon Sun and Moon Pushes Old 3DS Models to Their Limits

The New 3DS is looking somewhat more tempting now...

The Pokemon Sun and Moon Special Demo Version has been out for just over a day now, and already fans have datamined the entire Pokedex, and scoured the entire demo area for future goodies. What those with New 3DS systems may not know, however, is that players on older systems might be getting the shorter end of the stick this time around.

Those who have played the most recent Monster Hunter titles or Super Smash Bros. for the Nintendo 3DS on the older handheld model might already know this, but those games pushed the 3DS to its limits. In order to run them, the old 3DS model had to soft reset itself in order to close the OS and free up resources. This meant disabling heavier load features such as the internet browser and Miiverse.

Pokemon Sun and Moon's demo shares this issue, with the Nintendo 3DS having to soft reset in order to exit the game or before opening up other applications. Users who try to open the Home Menu at all while running the Sun and Moon demo will also note that it takes at least 3 to 5 seconds for the menu to open before being able to even close the game. The demo also takes over 10 seconds to load up at times as well -- much longer than the near instantaneous launch on New 3DS hardware.

While this is only the demo version of the game, it's likely that the full version will have to do the same in order to run the game. This might not be that much of an issue for those who do not take screenshots, but it is possible there may be heavier loading times for larger areas.

It's entirely possible that the full version might also have frame rate drops later on in the game, as the demo does not engage in many cutscenes or crowded spaces. It wouldn't be that surprising, as Pokemon X and Y (above) already had problems keeping a steady frame rate on older hardware -- especially with the 3D mode enabled.

Sun and Moon has already shown that it uses much more detailed models for its overworld, so a need to free up resources was bound to happen. Hopefully players on older versions of the console will be able to play the full version with relative comfort. All we know for certain is that clean screenshots might be a little harder to come by for those without capture devices.

Did you have a problem with the initial loading times on an older 3DS model? Are you now considering upgrading to a New 3DS? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below!

Published Oct. 19th 2016

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