Perhaps you’re aware of the ridiculousness of some of the DSi Ware offerings, and perhaps you’re not. Perhaps you’ve purchased some of the stuff there (and then grumbled about how you can’t transfer it), and perhaps you haven’t. Perhaps you read some of the press-releases, and perhaps you don’t. Perhaps you’ve used your Nintendo handheld as a torch!
For those of you who haven’t used their DS consoles as a torch, and who also don’t read press releases (and, really, we can’t blame you), a particularly interesting presser has been pasted below:
ESRB Rating: Not Rated
Price: 200 Nintendo DSi Points
Description: When it’s dark, people need a simple source of light.Â FlashlightÂ changes the dual screens of your Nintendo DSi system into a flashlight with added features. You can change the color and the intensity of the light. Use your Nintendo DSi system to read under a blanket or to get a serious source of light while taking night hikes.Â FlashlightÂ could also be helpful in other situations, such as using the warning light when your car has broken down.
Holy. Hot. Monkey. Balls. On. A. Swizzle. Stick.
I had honestly felt that it couldn’t get any worse when they started releasing crap such as notepads (complete with lifelike limitations such as finite pages) onto Nintendo’s download service, but this really takes the cake and gives it to GLaDOS to hold hostage. I’ve shaken my head at mothers who chastise DS games like NSMB or Phantom Hourglass or Phoenix Wright or whatever to be too expensive, only to be happy to plop thirty bucks down on Solitaire. I know that these people are out there.
But now I’m starting to think that, at the very least, if you wanted to play Solitaire without your DS, you at least need a packet of playing cards. That, or (equally affordable), a computer from 1992. There are some outside components that are integrated into the Solitaire gamecart. They may be pitiful and simple and worth less than a carton of chocolate milk, but at least they’re there. They exist.
Flashlight, on the other hand, is, in essence, charging people a couple of bucks in order to turn their DS consoles on. Granted, you may want some cellophane or something if you really want it toglow red or blue or whatever but, as far as I can tell, this product is aimed at people who have somehow failed to notice that their DS can generate light all by itself. That’s just what it does, first and foremost, when you switch it on. The people behind this product have added nothing. If you want to use it to read a book under your bedding (heaven help you), then you still have to provide your own book!
The DS isn’t a bad source of light as is, either. Two or three years back, I was in a share house with a bathroom that didn’t have any windows (and, therefore, relied on a pretty inadequate fan for ventilation), and a day came when the light bulb did blink out. At this point, I actually showered by the light of my DS Lite. I just switched the console on and, valuing my hygiene over the cost of the hardware, balanced it on a towel rack.
By this logic, nobody in their right mind would pay money for an application that allows your DS to make light. But I can guarantee you that somebody has, and that Flashlight has turned a profit. I mean, how could it not? It likely doesn’t even need a UI â€“ all they need is a guy who can program the screen’s backing colour to change colour when a button is pressed and the thing will work exactly as advertised.
I put this up here to laugh at it, because there’s not much else that I can do. It’s a kind of maniacal laugh though, of the sort that I let out after being told stories of people trying to find non-franchise coffee spots in London; a defensive blanket to stop me from crying.
At least there’s a potential scheme in here, if I’m willing to sell my creative soul. If somebody could program me a clumsy menu screen, then we may be able to work out some kind of Pictionary rip-off. Mind you, we probably can’t call it Pictionary. That’s cool, though â€“ some trite like ‘draw the words’ will do. We wouldn’t even need to include word suggestions â€“ people already know how to play Pictionary. We would just need to hope that enough of them don’t know that you can doodle on your touch screen without a meaningless application.