Nintendo weeks away from expanding its studio partnerships for the 3D handheld

Source: Full 3DS devkits roll out early 2011

Nintendo will make its 3DS devkits available to smaller independent studios “early in the new year”, Develop has been told from trusted development sources.

The handheld, set for full global release by March 2011, already has a number of independent and internal groups building games for the device.

At E3, some 70 games were announced to be in the works for the handheld. Level-5, Kojima Productions and Capcom are just a handful of studios Nintendo has already partnered with.

Yet with the launch line-up now set in train, Nintendo will in January begin licensing its development kits to the smaller indies, providing access to the widest possible stretch of game creators.

Nintendo’s strategy here is to ramp up the catalogue of 3DS games following the handheld’s initial launch offering.

Sony, meanwhile, has already sent out its PSP successor dev kits across the industry – this despite not revealing the hardware’s SKU line-up.

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