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On the DS, you could close it mid-play and pick up where you left off (Sleep Mode). You can also do this on the 3DS, but I have found that some DS games won't sleep properly when played on the 3DS (Yoshi's Island DS comes to mind).

Is there a way to make sure games enter sleep mode? I was a little disappointed to be quite a ways through a level, then I put my 3DS in sleep mode, and when I cam back 20 minutes later, the 3DS took me to the Home Screen instead of my game.

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

I don't know if this is the specific problem you're having, but there's apparently some hardware weirdness when the 3DS is in sleep mode, possibly related to sleep mode with DS games. Exposure to magnetic fields might be part of the problem. For instance, putting a 3DS on top of a DS Lite (which has magnets in the speakers in the lid) can sometimes cause this issue:

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I didn't have it on top of a DS but it was on a laptop. I don't know if that would do anything. –  Ashley Nunn Dec 19 '11 at 0:55
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Yeah, there are magnets in most laptops, in the speakers, the hard drive, and sometimes they're used to tell if the lid is closed or not (a Hall effect sensor, if you're curious). It's possible that if magnetic fields are the problem, that putting it on your laptop would cause an issue. –  agent86 Dec 19 '11 at 0:57
    
It seems possible. I can't think of any other reason. It worked later in the day (when the laptop wasn't present) so I think this probably answers it. :) –  Ashley Nunn Dec 19 '11 at 15:37
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