Nintendo 3DS Summit of Awesome #NintendoEnthused

Returning home from my whirlwind adventure in Seattle was bittersweet, as always. Coming home to the loving arms of my family, whom I missed dearly, is always the sweetest of the sweet part. Especially when they missed me enough to surprise me with this:

welcome home mommy cake
Talk about sweet! My husband watched all six kids and baked me a cake. Dude, he is freakin’ AWESOME!
friends at Nintendo cocktail party
Some friends I miss already!

Unfortunately, by coming home to my very-much-missed family means I’m leaving my friends (new and old) behind, which is the bitter part. It’s always difficult, since we’re so scattered all over the country. Only seeing each other once (if we’re lucky, more) a year is tough, friends. Real tough.

But this incredible Nintendo 3DS event was pretty much the coolest fricken way to hang out with my fellow-gaming friends, learn all about this new system, as well as get an inside look into Nintendo and their facilities in a fun and inviting way, and I could not be more thankful to Brand About Town and to all the Nintendo folks that made this magnificent weekend happen.

I have long loved the Nintendo gaming systems, reminiscing my days as a child playing Donkey Kong and Mario Brothers alongside my pre-pubescent friends, dueling each other on Zelda with game cartridge after game cartridge. Folks, it has been my pleasure to watch and experience Nintendo flex it’s gaming muscles into the sophisticated gaming systems they are today, and share them with my children, as well as all of you, too. Becoming a Nintendo Brand Ambassador was pretty much the awesomest thing to ever be offered, ever, and such a natural fit for me and my family. As if being an Ambassador or Enthusiast wasn’t already spectacular enough, then they invite me on this trip, to see where the magic happens and be formally introduced to their newest system. Won.der.ful.

During this action-packed Nintendo 3DS-based trip, we got the unique opportunity to tour the Nintendo Headquarters, too. Unique, as in, you can’t even ask for a tour, or buy one, they are only available to Make-A-Wish or via raffle for charity – that’s it! So special! And while touring the facility, we were not allowed under any circumstances to capture any pictures. As aesthetically beautiful as the building was, with all the wonderful Nintendo paraphernalia around, I couldn’t capture a single Mario, a single Luigi to share with you the extent of the beauty within their offices. I understand why, but as a writer/blogger/natural-sharer? That part was way tough! Their offices are as green as possible, with bamboo floors, a “green” roof with plants and shrubs, lights on motion sensors and heat coming from the floors. It meant a great deal to see how they were striving for green perfection in their headquarters and being so very eco-minded. I truly wish I could have shared some images with you.

During the actual summit part on Friday, during which we had extensive playing time with the Nintendo 3DS, I asked each Nintendo employee I came across how they liked working for Nintendo. Each person unequivocally answered, without a stammer – “I love this job!” I was bitten by their enthusiasm. As I ate lunch in their healthy-living cafe that day, I kept pointing out to other ambassadors how even the employees on their lunch-breaks were playing hand-held gaming devices while they ate. Talk about passion! It was contagious. They were so inspired, so enthusiastic about what they were doing, the real definition of “enthused” – which I suppose is the reason why they consider us “enthusiasts” or #NintendoEnthused on Twitter.

What’s my take on the Nintendo 3DS? Amazing. Game-changing. If you have the opportunity to try one, do it! Try it! Because anything I say to you here will pale in comparison to trying one for yourself. I am wholly impressed by their technology, by the parental controls that give YOU piece of mind while you’re children play, and wholeheartedly blown away by how different and cutting edge these units are, like nothing you have ever seen. Turning yourself to steer your ship in Steel Diver? Bringing your surroundings to life and having your table come alive with a dragon attacking you with the AR Games? Creating a Mii using Mii Maker and trade Miis with others using StreetPass? Take 3D pictures of yourself, and then fight yourself in Face Raiders? Seriously. Try it. And if you live near me, ask me. I’ll show you. Unreal stuff here, folks.

Here are some pictures from my whirlwind weekend. My neck is still recuperating from hauling my DSLR around, but I had to. I couldn’t not capture everyone and everything.

snow-capped mountains
Snow-capped mountains on my flight to Seattle – gorgeous!
Nintendo cocktail party sign in Hyatt lobby
Sign in the lobby. The Twisted Cork was INCREDIBLE!
Hyatt Bellevue hotel room
My gorgeous hotel room at the Hyatt Bellevue. *swoon*
Nintendo 3DS logo in conference room
Logo on all the flat-screen TVs in the conference room.
Nintendo President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime
Reggie Fils-Aime, President and COO of Nintendo, taking time out of his busy day to speak to us!
Playing Nintendo 3DS
Game time, yo!
Nintendo 3DS gaming stations
We visited different gaming stations to try each game by group.
Nintendo Headquarters Seattle
I may not have been able to take pictures of their offices, but I got an outdoor shot!
Sign for cocktail party before dinner at Hyatt Bellevue
Cocktails before dinner! (I had to take this picture, too. It seems the other event had their choice of meeting OR coffee break. Ha!)
Anthony's Pier 66 in Seattle
The view from Anthony’s Pier 66 on the water – breathtaking!
Delicious food served at Nintendo Summit
The gorgeous, delicious, mind-boggling food we enjoyed!
Even at breakfast, we were gaming-it-up!
Mount Rainier
Mount Rainier on the flight back – isn’t it beautiful?

Words cannot express the wonderful time I had. Many thanks to the courteous and professional staff at Hyatt Bellevue, including the electrician with a kind-smile who visited my room when my TV wasn’t working properly (the cable plug wasn’t inserted all the way, it was not operator error. Ahem.), as well as the deliciously entertaining waitstaff/bartenders who smiled and thoroughly entertained us at each cocktail party.

The attention to detail was incredible, and so very thoroughly appreciated. Thanks to all, again, who made this weekend an experience I’ll never ever forget.

*Disclosure: As a Nintendo Ambassador, I am sent Nintendo items/games/devices from time to time to play with and enjoy, as well as access to exclusive events and parties. This trip was paid for in full, and I was given a Nintendo 3DS for attending. My affiliation with Nintendo does not sway my opinion of them at all, as I have long-loved their company before becoming an ambassador.

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