I really wanted to find the biggest picture that I could of the Nintendo DSiXL 100 Classic Books game to give you the best idea of what it would look like. Hopefully this particular picture gives you some idea of the reading experience you can expect to have, courtesy of a Nintendo DSi XL screen!
Now the lovely ladies here at 5 Minutes for Books were each given an opportunity to read from this 100 Classic Books game on the new Nintendo DSi XL. As any of you who know me through my book reviews, you know that I like reading with an actual book on my hand. Reading a book on a game console is typically not my cup of tea. However, I was willing to give it a go after traveling to New York in May (for BEA.) My affinity for words on a printed page kind of got the better of me as I discovered that I didn’t have very much space in my carry-on luggage to cart a lot of books around! On that trip, and at that time, I wished I had some small, portable system on which to read books, simply to save space! Honestly, the only time I’d be tempted to read a book on a screen would be when traveling. I have to be in space-saving mode. Otherwise, I really prefer the feel and the smell of an actual book.
That said, I enjoyed the opportunity granted by Nintendo to give this 100 Classic Books game a whirl.
Here are my positives from the experience:
* I actually appreciate the fact that this is a game on a game console. When I travel, I typically travel with children. When traveling with children, I like having something with which to distract them. Hand held games are attractive to my three year old. I like the fact that I can be reading a book on the console on minute, but then switch it over to SeaWorld Adventure Parks Shamu’s Deep Sea Adventure (which I picked up locally, upon receiving our game console.) (Have I ever mentioned that I am also a big fan of Tetris?)
* I desperately liked the fact the game console gives you three bookmarks to use per book you read. As a book reader/reviewer, I find myself marking multiple passages in books that I want to come back to and think more about. I appreciated that I could mark up to three spots in the books I was reading on the Nintendo DSi XL. (Usually, when I’m reading a book, I allow myself to mark 3-4 spots for thought/discussion purposes so this was a handy and very perfect number of bookmarks for me!)
* I like the fact that there are 100 titles to choose from, some short and some long. I personally chose to read Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde on the console because a.) it was short and b.) I wanted to get a feel for how reading a book on screen would be for me.
* I don’t really like reading books on screen.
It’s just not the same. I being able to feel a book and turn the pages myself. That said, I know that when traveling, this can be a convenient game to have on hand that is not only useful to Mommy when she’s bored, but for the little children when they become antsy and squeamish.
I definitely plan to add games to our Nintendo DSi XL collection – strictly for traveling (to keep the novelty of it alive!) And when we’re traveling, I know that I WILL make use of the fact that there is a 100 Classic Books game. I can absolutely see myself utilizing that when traveling space is limited. This game is a fun idea and much more convenient to families at large, which I think gives it special appeal. It’s small, convenient, (and did I mention it takes pictures? Bookworm1 and I got a bit distracted with that feature…) A solid book in hand isn’t quite so distracting. But then your typical book doesn’t offer Tetris. So there’s your trade off!
Disclosure: Nintendo sent a DS game system and a copy of the 100 Classic Books, for review purposes.