.3DS File Extension

2 file types use the .3ds file extension.
File Type 1

3D Studio Scene

Developer Autodesk
4.1  |  194 Votes
Category 3D Image Files
Format Binary

What is a 3DS file?

A 3DS file is a 3D image format used by Autodesk 3D Studio. It contains mesh data, material attributes, bitmap references, smoothing group data, viewport configurations, camera locations, and lighting information. 3DS files may also include object animation data.

More Information

3DS files consist of blocks of data called "chunks" that contain an ID and length description. Chunks store the shapes, lighting, and viewing information that together represents the three-dimensional scene.

NOTE: The 3DS format has been replaced by .MAX files in newer versions of the 3ds Max software. However, the 3DS format is still widely used.

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Programs that open or reference 3DS files

Updated July 28, 2016
File Type 2

Nintendo 3DS ROM

Developer N/A
4.0  |  111 Votes
Category Game Files
Format N/A

A 3DS file contains a game ROM of a video game for the Nintendo 3DS (N3DS) handheld console system. It stores a copy of the data from an original game cartridge and can be played on a computer with supporting emulator software.

More Information

3DS files are typically used by gamers who enjoy playing discontinued games on their computers. The gamers may create 3DS files by dumping the game data from the original cartridge onto a computer and packaging it as a 3DS file. Or gamers may download 3DS files from game emulator websites that have already been dumped from game cartridges.

There are various emulators available for playing 3DS games, including TronDS and Citra. Some features provided by emulators include enhanced game graphics, "cheat" options, and new gameplay settings.

NOTE: 3DS files may require external resource files to be emulated properly. If the correct resource files are not present, there may be glitches in the game or it may not be playable.

Programs that open or reference 3DS files

Updated September 22, 2020

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