Accessory Review: WaterField CitySlicker 3DS Case

Shawn reviews WaterField’s flagship case.

By Shawn Wilkins. Posted 03/25/2015 15:00 Comment on this     ShareThis
The Final Grade
grade/score info
1-Up Mushroom for...
Mature design
Premium quality leather
Exuberant craftsmanship
Poison Mushroom for...
Additional weight

3DS has been desperate for a decent case for all of its lifetime. Unlike smartphones and tablets, cases for video game handhelds usually range from faux leather and velcro to thin shells that can attach to the system’s body. Finding a premium case is something that people have spent years searching for, and WaterField Designs has created exactly that.

The CitySlicker is a case made for people who know what they want in a case, but couldn’t figure out how they wanted it presented. From its almost poetic style to its incredibly sumptuous looks, the expectations for this case are exceedingly high. Things that are simply built with such devotion usually focus on how to perfect one thing and leave else to the wayside, but here, the extra mile was taken.

The case features a flap cover the entire front of the case that is suited with premium leather. When the phrase “premium leather” is said, it usually evokes a sense of ironic inauthenticity, but the feel, the application, and the quality of this leather is superb and it’s made evident. It’s not a hopeful and and poorly put together case. The feel of the leather embraces a natural touch, one that feels like you’ve just purchased something that was processed solely for this. It’s all stitched together, and even the stitching, a minor detail, feels like it was given a luxury treatment.

The stitching is seen from both the interior and exterior of the flap with two buttons accompanying them from within. The leather is applied to the part that’s visible when the flap is closed, but the opposite side is covered with another piece of dark, exquisite, black leather. Again, premium leather. The two slabs of leather are seen as well-assembled pieces and not something that was hacked together in a rush, but a pure illustration of absolute precision with perfection at the forefront.

It leads directly into the slot that is used to hold the 3DS. The 3DS XL fits perfectly. There is no loose space, but it isn’t too tight, metaphorically clamoring for life. While it is a snug fit, WaterField has supplied a small tab alongside the bottom of the case that is solely used for holding when you need to pull out the console. It’s this level of care and ingenuity that was left on the sideline when other companies were experimenting with 3DS XL cases. The usage of two leather tones, the ease and satisfaction that is found in both sliding your 3DS in and out of this case is a testimony to the work put forth into creating a case that caters to those who yearn for something of quality.

Atop the pocket for the console is yet another leather slab, entirely stitched on, with three divided pockets for various games. On top of those pockets are three small holes meant for you to slide upon in order to remove the games. Easy stuff. Given the dimensions of both 3DS cartridges and DS ones, the cases fit both with absolute ease. With the flap buttoned down, you not only get to see your color choice and its visible virtue, but you know your console and games are securely protected.

Along the back is the mesh pocket. The pocket has an all-over smooth, fluff feel that only parallels a memory foam pillow. Aligned with a zipper, it can be filled with anything from additional memory cards, more games, small pieces of paper, Japanese candies, or even a USB charging cable. A 3 foot USB cable folded into a series of ovals seems to fit in perfectly fine, although it does produce a bulge of sorts. The pocket is meant to hold things and be flush with the rest of the case, but, like most pockets, in use, it does not stay as so.

With this case, it’s seen as something that is defined as premium. With a $50 price tag, it has to be received as such. It has nuanced flaws, although. The usage of leather creates an expected weight relative to the console, and with a case of this level, you’re expected to perceive it as an additional unit. You don’t slip and slide this out of your pocket, but rather you put this in your bag. Many 3DS XL users find comfort in their large pockets and the like, but for those who rather put their console in a backpack, purse, manpurse, etc. you can find comfort in using this case as it was meant to be.

That said, it’s hard to find anything generally wrong with this case. Everything about it feels premium. Everything about it shows how WaterField went above and beyond to craft something that is left unrivaled. Everything about it has care, down to the finest detail. It’s rare for something to have some little to no ingrained flaws, especially given its competition, but if any accessory has done it, it’s this case. It’s something I pull out of my bag and want to show off. Not for its vanity, but because I legitimately want people to see it, ask questions, see how different it is from the one a retailer offers for ten dollars – it’s just that good.

When retailers, other companies, even independent businesses decide to rival WaterField on the level showcased here, the discussion can be had for what the best case is for the 3DS family. However, as it stands, WaterField has created what can only be summed up as the perfect case; quality-first, care-embedded, and all-around illustrious. What’s presented here is a display of artistry, and, personally, I’d have it no other way.

The CitySlicker is available from WaterField Designs for $49.00 in five colors, black, camel, grizzly, kiwi, and orange.

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