Take Notes While Playing Nintendo 3DS Games

By Ishaan . January 28, 2011 . 12:53pm

Similar to the Wii, the Nintendo 3DS has a “Home” button. Pressing it takes you to the system’s Home menu, even if you’re in the middle of the game. Unlike the Wii, however, the 3DS can multi-task.


From the Home menu, you can choose to suspend your game and open up the system’s Internet browser (which will be made available in May) to browse the web. The Home menu also allows you to access your Friend List and an application called Game Notes.


Game Notes allows you to take notes on the 3DS touchscreen while a game is suspended. The top screen of the 3DS will display either a screenshot the top screen of the game, or both the top and bottom screens shrunk down to fit. You can switch between either. Notes taken using the Game Notes app can then be saved to the SD card.

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  • That seems nice though I think I would never use the feature. I can not think of any instance in which I would need to take notes from a game, lol.

    • SilentNeko

      Really? What about their main idea at the top, Zelda? Or dungeon crawlers, as mentioned before. I would say games like Professor Layton, but they’ve already incorporated a memo function into the game.

    • necrosex

      Keep thinking.

    • Zero_Destiny

      You obviously haven’t played the DS Zelda games since this feature is built into the games and is necessary to progress, especially in the towers. Also I thought you’d liked to use guides. Well now if you’re going out and don’t want/can’t carry your guides with you, you can look ahead and scribble down some important info so that you won’t miss out. Seems like a perfect feature for you.

      • Tom_Phoenix

        …Am I the only one frightened by the fact that Tsunayoshi has such presence on Siliconera that some users seem to know his habits? :P

        • Zero_Destiny

          I go to bed at night sometimes wondering if I’m just his puppet for his own amusement. So no, you’re not alone. lol

    • Now you can save money on those strategy guides!

  • Ereek

    I can see this being very useful for some dungeon crawlers. I can’t be the only one who forgets “there’s a door that leads to a small locked room on 3F that I can’t seem to find a key for.”

    I also wrote some notes when farming high level Grottos in DQIX so I knew where the 8/9/10 Treasure was at quick reference.

    Either way, even if not everyone uses it, more features isn’t a bad thing.

    • In the EO games, you could just scribble it on an in-game note.
      In SMT: Strange Journey, not knowing what was where was part of the fun.

      The Dark Spire exists solely to torture people, so you shouldn’t cheat that at all. Just enjoy the pain. <3

      • Ereek

        Even The Dark Spire is easy compared to early Wizardry games from which it was based off of.
        The torture is, of course, the entire appeal of the harder games of the dungeon-crawling genre. EO is a bit too easy for me, but the little note placing is nice, if a bit inconvenient to have to type out.

        • *nods* I’ve heard about that a lot, yeah.
          The Dark Spire got me interested in the Wizardry games, but I got my ass handed to me /so hard/… >->

          I’ll agree that EO is relatively easy – especially EOIII was dead simple.
          However, I still prefer EOIII to the other First-Person Dungeon Crawlers on the DS.

    • puchinri

      This. I agree completely. I used to jot down notes while playing games (or use my computer to now), so being able to do so with so much ease and convenience is very nice.

  • vadde939

    Very nice. I’s good to see Nintendo packing so much into the 3DS. Little features like this really do make alot of difference to me.

  • Nice, but I can see how it would kill the immersion, probably won’t use.

  • onilink888

    Man, this would’ve helped A LOT for 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors. :P

  • Code

    rarr, I love this idea >ww> This feature if it works well, might just be one of my favorite little features on the system >w<'

  • I can not tell you how many time I have forgotten passwords in game. I end up going back to find them again.

  • Jaxx-Leviathan

    That sounds really useful to me, I could see myself using that often. I guess it’ll make a lot of puzzle-segments slightly easier, when you need to remember combinations, codes, whatever.

  • Minor nitpick …. this isn’t really multitasking. It’s just suspending and resuming the game. It’s possible this isn’t even built into the OS but just a feature that Nintendo requires to be baked into every game.

    • Guest

      “just a feature that Nintendo requires to be baked into every game.”

      Err…its completely SEPARATE from the game. That’s what this whole feature is about. I don’t think its true multitasking either but yea this isn’t a forced feature in games or anything like you think it is.

      • I meant that Nintendo would require the game to handle the home button press in the game’s input handler, then the game would take a screenshot of itself and call a routine in the system ROM to display the home menu. It would also have to poll Nintendo’s servers periodically in the game loop to light up the friend online indicator light. Obviously I have no idea if it works like this, I’m just guessing.

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