Note: This is taken from my website 9fiftyfive.github.io I'd appreciate it if you took some time to check it out. Thanks! 3DSXL hand cramps: Here's my workaround. Wednesday, April 13th,2016 The 3DSXL is a great system. It's offered me hours upon hours of fun. The 3DS a great upgrade for those still using the DSi, and it's backwards compatibility is superb. The 3DS offers a large selection of eShop games, and it's NFC-style multiplayer makes it great for a wide variety of situations. For it’s cheap price tag, the 3DSXL is almost a no-brainer. Almost. I purchased my 3DSXL nearly two years ago, and for a while, I didn't use it. I bought it to replace my already rarely used DSi. I originally wanted the regular-sized version, but due to lack of quantity, it was 3DSXL or nothing. I used it for the first month or so, but quickly lost interest. I owned one game (MarioKart 7), and for some reason, I barely played it (even though it's currently my favorite game). It sat in storage for over a year and a half before I decided to pick it up again, mainly to hack it. This spiked my interest in the system, and ever since then, I've played it a lot (even a little too much ). This is where the problem begins. The first game I began to play after I picked up my 3DSXL was MarioKart 7. This game is still my favorite DS game to this day as it offers many hours of fun (and I gave myself all the cool karts from a PowerSaves). Now, it's important to note the way I hold my 3DS. I've placed a picture below for you to see. DS Grip As you can see, because my hands are large, I'm forced to awkwardly bend my thumb in order to reach the ABXY buttons below me. Because, in MarioKart, "A" is to accelerate, I was forced to hold down my thumb in the awkward position for three or so minutes straight (average time of a MarioKart race). This causes intense cramping in my right thumb. The cramps were so bad that I was unable to play more than four races without needing a good five or so minute break. At first, I thought it was just me who was holding the DS wrong. However, after trying to search for a comfortable position, I couldn't find anything else that would work. I made this post, and, to my surprise, I wasn't alone. It was noted that not only the shape but the weight of the 3DSXL caused cramping. I tried playing in an armchair, which kind-of helped, but that wasn't the solution I was looking for. I was then given three suggestions. The first suggestion was to purchase a grip for the 3DSXL (Here's one for reference.). The second suggestion was a 2DS, and the third suggestion was the regular-sized New 3DS. I eliminated the grip as it wouldn't be portable, leaving me with two expensive options - a new console. Originally, I had wanted to go with the New 3DS. Redditors explained that, even though it was a smaller device, the weight made it much easier to use. The responses for the 2DS weren't good. This comment stood out to me as well. Reddit user Darius2301 claimed that, after trying all of the systems, the 2DS "just didn't fit [his] hands". This pushed me further to the New 3DS and made me rule out the 2DS. That was, however, until I saw the price. I'll give you a price rundown of the New 3DS. First, I'll have to pay $220 for the "Happy Home Designer Bundle" because Nintendo doesn't sell the regular-sized New 3DS in normal colors (they only sell it in bundles). Not only would this be the most awkward trip to GameStop (Imagine a male walking in to GameStop and asking for the Happy Home Designer 3DS, which is clearly aimed at children 10 and under.), but the price would be more that what I payed for for my old 3DSXL. I decided that, maybe if I saved, I could make the New 3DS happen. Then I realized that I'd need to order different plates for my 3DS because the ones from the Happy Home Designer bundle look horrid, even for a little kid. I found Plates 024 to be the coolest looking ones. Unfortunately, they would cost me another $40, and they're a wood design, so they'd need something over them to protect them. The solution to that would be to purchase this TPU case, which adds another $30. In total, my new system would cost a whopping $290! This made me take the 2DS into consideration. Now, at second glance, the 2DS doesn't look so bad. It's price tag is dirt-cheap at $60 for a refurbished one, which also comes with a charger. Many reviewers admired the 2DS's more "comfortable" and "adult-friendly" design. I even found this article, which showed how the 2DS was more likely to be picked by adult reviewers. On top of that, it lacks the useless 3D feature that made me sick. This can be seen as a pro because it can, in some cases, make the 2DS's battery last longer than the 3DS (image listed below). I decided to assess the 2DS and the New 3DS to pick out the pros and cons of each system. Battery Test Screenshot from Blunty's video Here were the pros and cons of each system: New 3DS Pros/Cons: +Plays all the new games +Much faster> +Hardware upgrade over current system (3DSXL) +Improved 3D +Looks very nice -Very expensive -Not as good of a battery life as the 2DS -Not sure if the weight will be enough to make the system more comfortable and reduce strain 2DS Pros/Cons: +Extremely cheap +Supposedly more comfortable +Better battery life +/-No 3D -Looks kind-of stupid -Not as portable -Not a hardware upgrade I decided that, after comparing the two, the 2DS would be the right system for me (or at least I hoped). Conclusion So, today my 2DS came in today. I eagerly opened the box, and it was the perfect solution I was waiting for. It fit right in my hands with zero, and I mean ZERO strain. It was comfortable, fit well in my hands, and was cheap. So, I guess to conclude my "quest" to find the most comfortable Nintendo handheld, I pick the 2DS. As stated before, it is affordable, comfortable, and mostly capable of running every game (some new VC games don't work, and also, good luck playing MH4U on that thing). If you're experiencing cramping issues such as I was, or you're just looking for your first Nintendo handheld, I recommend the 2DS. Thanks for reading, and have a great day!