Handhelds have generally been region-free since the Game Boy kicked things off, but controversially the 3DS will have region locking enforced, Nintendo has confirmed.
This isn't just to piss off keen importers though, explains the firm. Marketing man Bill Trinen explains: "Different regions have different ratings systems. The region-locking allows us to provide the different parental controls to deal with the ratings in each territory."
This sounds like a new concept for Nintendo, but Trinen apparently explained to Kotaku that this policy has been in place for years with the Wii and DSi.
Yet the DSi is region-free - for cart-based games at least. Maybe he's referring to the downloadable DSiWare games, which are region-specific.
On the plus side, various internet reports have suggested that the 3DS games library will only be partially region locked (rather like the Xbox 360), forcing importers to do their research on a game-by-game basis before shelling out the cash.
Nintendo boss man Satoru Iwata has said the firm expects 'rocket sales' for the new console at launch.
It's out in UK on March 25, and US on March 27.