It seems that the Internet is awash with people complaining of a “black screen of death” on their new Nintendo 3DS handhelds, launched Friday in UK and Sunday in US.
The screen, which has been noted to appear during games such as Ghost Recon and Monkey Ball, suggests that the power be turned off and the unit be restarted, and if the problems persist to contact your local customer support centre. Whilst turning off the power and turning back on again seems to work for most people, there is no denying that it is annoying.
Suggestions about the cause of the problem are also circulating, with some claiming certain buggy games and others claiming wifi issues. The overriding feeling seems to be that the problem will be solved with the next firmware update. However…
Our personal experience here at GGUK is as follows. We have had our unit for a couple of weeks now and it has seen extensive use. Before launch, a lot of time was put into Ghost Recon, a game during which a lot of people claim to have experienced the error, without a single hitch at all. In fact, we saw absolutely no problems with the unit, besides the icons spinning at high speed without anyone blowing into the microphone, until after the launch and after the unit was updated. Since then, each time Monkey Ball has been played the Black Screen of Death has been experienced. We also noticed that when the error occurs, the Wifi light is permanently on.
Could it be Monkey Ball? Possibly. But in my mind it is more likely that something in the first update has caused this. The update included “improved wireless network connection” and could be linked with the Wifi light being on during the error.
But this is all speculation. Whatever the problem is, let’s hope that Nintendo fix it soon.