Nintendo 3DS 'Close To' PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360?

Nintendo 3DS

Could Nintendo's upcoming 3D DS be as powerful as Sony's PlayStation 3 or Microsoft's Xbox 360?

Here's a little story I'd like to tell, about raising expectations, then sending them to...well...

Imagine a handheld gaming device powerful enough to rival the PS3 and Xbox 360 coming from the company most recently infamous for selling a galactic empire's worth of consoles and gaming handhelds, all despite those devices crunching graphics with less than half the silicon mojo of its rivals.

That's the popular takeaway from IGN's preview of Nintendo's upcoming 3D-based successor to its DS gaming handheld. (That, and another rumor that the Nvidia-Nintendo mobile Tegra chipset deal's a bust.)

Writes IGN: "Several developers that have experienced 3DS in its current form have reported, off the record, that it has processing capabilities that far exceed the Nintendo Wii and bring the device with abilities that are close to HD consoles such as PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360."

The 3DS won't just zip past the DS in processing oomph, it'll blast past the low-flying Wii and settle into orbit alongside the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360?

Am I kidding? I'm not kidding, though I'm pretty sure the "developer sources" teasing IGN are.

What if it's true? It's not, but even if it's half-true, i.e. Wii-caliber processing power, watch out Microsoft and Sony. The Nintendo DS's outsold everything this generation, and it's about to snatch the PS2's crown for most units sold ever (retail sales tracker NPD Group estimates that'll happen sometime this fall).

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