Colors! 3D – Review

Title: Colors! 3D
Genre: Painting application
System: 3DS
Developer: Collecting Smiles
Publisher: Collecting Smiles

What should be considered an application, rather than a game as such, Colors! 3D is the latest available to download from the Nintendo 3DS eshop. Following in the lines of Flipnote studio, this brings out your creative side.

The app’ starts by asking you whether you are right or left handed. This determines where the controls are mapped, which, for a right handed user which I am, means the menu is bought up with a quick click of the L button and the circle pad is used to flick between layers and zoom in and out of your artwork. The stylus is used, of course, to draw on the bottom screen and you can also use the R button to undo and move around your painting when zoomed in, by holding left on the directional pad as you slide your stylus across the screen.

The tools menu where you can choose colour and brush options

By means of a simple tutorial, you are the introduced to the tools menu which gives you the options to choose a colour from a full spectrum, pick the weight of your ‘brush’, the tint of your colour and the brush effect. There are three options from a hard line to a softer ‘brush’ effect, as well as an eraser. I found this very intuitive and easy to navigate around, with easy access to other options including the ability to undo, clear and save from this menu too.

You have 5 layers to choose from in each of your creations, upon which you can draw different elements of your painting. Quite simply, the first layer is furthest away and the last layer will be right at the forefront of your creation. There is also the ability to import photos from your 3DS camera roll, which you can place in the background. I found this a good technique to use for tracing over the top of a photo. Once complete you have the option to save your work on your SD card.

for the godess

for the godess

You can also upload your artwork to the online community and then check other’s masterpieces for inspiration. There are some excellent examples of what you can really do with this software to see, including the option to see a sped up video of the artwork being created and view the painting layer by layer. The full range of paintings are also online at The Gallery gives you the option to view newly uploaded paintings, as well as those which are top rated by other users and you can save your favourites to your SD card. This Skyward Sword example by user spartacris is one of my particular favourites, with excellent use of the layers for the elements of the ground, the clouds and Link himself.

Whilst painting with the stylus feels natural, I did find the small screen size limiting, which means zooming and moving around will need to be done regularly. The combination of holding the console and switching your thumb position between using the circle pad and the direction pad that is needed to execute these controls can be a little cumbersome.


I was intrigued to check out Colors! 3D and I was pleasantly surprised and impressed. The ability to create 3D ‘paintings’ using a simple, easy to use interface, with just the right number of options means I recommend this to anyone who fancies themselves as a bit of an artist. Local wireless sharing with another user adds painting with friends to the mix too, plus you can turn your hand to colouring in some preloaded black white examples if you fancy. Colors! 3D is available now from the eshop for £5.40. Check it out!

Wes’ score: 8/10

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