I bought a DSi when it first released. No one cared for it, but it became my favorite portable ever. Using the system's functions to its fullest made it more than with the buy.
I actually kinda regretted selling it to get the 3DS. The 3DS had all of its functions, but none of the charm.
I buy consoles for the consoles. Not just the games. If I wanted just the games, I'd skip generations (as either A) games become cheaper, or B) backwards-compatibility saves the day).
That said, no one complained about the exclusives for the DSi. And lo and behold: the DSi games were playable for the 3DS (not at their best, however... some games didn't fully work with the 3DS' camera).
I don't have a new 3DS. My best friend does, I bought it for her. I was jealous, since Xenoblade Chronicles is one of my favorite JRPGs of all time and I'd love to play it on the go.
And no, I coudn't have bought it for myself - I have bills to pay, I only go above and beyond in payments when they're consoles I NEED, or they're gifts.
That said, I already have a 3DS.
What I AM VERY jealous of is the N3DS' better internet connectivity and run speed.
But I DON'T need it.
So I didn't buy it.
You can argue this is the worst thing about consumerism, that this is a betrayal on Nintendo's front... but I'd argue: Didn't you see it coming from a mile away?
You already have the primest of examples: the DSi. But Nintendo's always done the "Ver 1 => Ver 1.5 => Ver 2" with its portables for almost all of its life.
And sure, the 3DS had a Ver 1 (3DS), Ver 1.2 (2DS), and Ver 1.3 (New 3DS)... but ver 1.2 directly addresses the concerns of consumers not caring for 3D (or parents having problems getting their kids to turn down the 3D).
But again, didn't the DS do this as well? DS. DS Lite. DSXL, DS Lite XL, and finally the DSi.
We can blame NIntendo and the culture of consumerism. But people BUYING INTO THEM are the ones making the market and creating the culture.
It's like DLC, patches, and pre-orders. The only reason why they're so prevalent and powerful these days is because people are BUYING them.
I personally haven't bought that much DLC over the years. Just the ones I needed. If I found a DLC to be offensive in its sales marketing, I wouldn't buy it and simply pretend the game is only as good as its non-DLC self.
End of story.
I know we're talking about principles here.
But 1) these principles aren't entirely new for Nintendo. You can go back several years and still hit the Gameboy and the Gameboy Color - then years later hit the Gameboy pocket.
And 2) the principles aren't a one-way issue. Consumer and business hold equal power. A consumer changes the business through buying, selling, and refusing. They can boycott, they can argue, they can do whatever they want... but in the end it's their sales that show how much the people ACTUALLY care. Got a problem with other people buying into it? Argue with them, not at the company. And businesses change consumers through their products and copyright laws. The former is dependent on the consumer, the latter is dependent on the business itself - consumers can have very little effect on copyright infringement laws, it's the business itself that argues over it.
This ain't new.
Is this a great thing or a terrible thing?
It depends on your paychecks and birthdays, I suppose. But it's isolated on you for the most part. Even if other people share your concerns, in the end the only thing you can do is NOT BUY IT.
Nintendo sells it because they want to make money off of a prototype. They did that with the DSi. Don't like it? Only ever buy the first iteration of something.
Want the exclusive games? EIther get them in the next iteration, or just get them used after the handheld's dropped in price.