Nintendo has always had a special place in our hearts, but their handheld system is still one of the largest, and amazing libraries that any mobile handheld system has ever offered. With Nintendo favorites like Mario Kart, Legend of Zelda, Super Mario, and even Smash Bros. the Nintendo 3DS is a beast of a system just waiting to suck up all your time. Today we’ve compiled ten of the best games the 3DS has to offer to help you get started on your quest for Nintendo dominance.
Fire Emblem Awakening
Revolving around the usual complex tactical combat, Fire Emblem Awakening also introduces players to the idea of romance between their warriors. Much like the original Fire Emblem games, Fire Emblem Awakening pits players against enemies in turn-based combat where the loss of a fighter is permanent. The new twist this time, however, is that character can fall in love with each other as they fight alongside each other. As they fall in love they can get married and even have children together, mixing several of the key attributes of each parent in the child. Together these components help to craft one of the best strategy games to ever hit Nintendo’s handheld 3D gaming system.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
A Link Between Worlds isn’t just another adventure tale set within the Zelda universe. Instead of simply recreating the Super Nintendo Classic (as they had original planned) Nintendo instead crafted one of the most charming and delightful adventures to hit any game store shelves in many years. Though it might not hold up as visually to the Wii and Wii U Zelda titles, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds is a Zelda adventure you don’t want to miss.
There are a lot of games going for the retro look these days, but Shovel Knight isn’t just looking to give you those visuals, it’s willing to bring the whole package to the table. Take on the role of the Shovel Knight as you fight through a beautiful 2D side-scrolling adventure that feels like it was pulled straight out of the golden age. Though the genre may be bloated at this point, Shovel Knight is a welcome return and reminder of everything good that 2D side-scrollers have to offer.
Super Mario 3D Land
Much like Super Mario 3D World, which we covered in our Best of Wii U piece, Super Mario 3D Land builds off of the successful 2D side-scrolling style of the older Mario games and then pulls the rub out from under you with a stylish 3D look that helps them feature new puzzles and ways to explore the world. Take on Bowser and his minions in this new 3D side-scrolling as you fight to save Princess Peach once more from the clutches of evil.
Set within a fantastical world of magic and danger, Bravely Default is a welcome return to the feel of the old-school strategy games that enveloped many of our childhoods. With content as good as some of the greatest Final Fantasy games, Bravely Default is breathtaking, delicately crafted, and provides plenty of content to keep you playing for hundreds of hours. This might be a turn off to some, considering you’re playing it with such a small l device as the 3DS, but to us Bravely Default is still one of the best RPGs to ever hit Nintendo’s handheld systems.
Mario Kart 7
The Mario Kart formula hasn’t been broken for a long time, and the 3DS debut of the popular karting series is another successful notch in Nintendo’s belt. With newly added customization options, key features that tap into the 3DS’ technical features, and the ability to play on the go wherever you are, Mario Kart 7 is a must-have for any Nintendo fans looking to school their friends in some good ole fashioned Mario Karting. With new glider wings, aerial sections, and submersible karts, Mario Kart 7 is the crème de la crème of the portable Mario Kart world.
Majora's Mask 3D
Set a few months after the events of Ocarina of Time, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask is perhaps the darkest tale Nintendo has ever told in the Zelda universe. Set in an alternate land to Hyrule, Termina is under the threat of a falling moon, and Link has only three days to stop it. Fight your way through dungeons that require you to equip special masks which transform you and give you new abilities, all while trying to stop the evil Skullkid from destroying Clock Town and the surrounding regions. Remember not to take too long, after all Termina is already running on borrowed time.
Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS
While the 3DS will never be the chosen platform for fighting game pros, or even competition matches, Nintendo worked hard to bring the brawling, fist punching action of Super Smash Bros. to the handheld system. Featuring the same huge roster as the Wii U version, Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS is a little brother companion to its larger Wii U sibling. Don’t let it fool you though, there is still plenty of action to be had on the 3DS version, and with the New 3DS you can even incorporate your Amiibos into some of the finest battles to ever hit any handheld system.
Monster Hunter Ultimate 4
Ever dreamed of being a master Monster Hunter? Well now is your change to take on beasts of all shapes and sizes, without ever having to leave your bedroom. Step into the shoes of a Monster Hunter in Monster Hunter Ultimate 4. Team up with your friends to take on massive beasts, insects, and creatures like you’ve never seen before. Taking the tried and true formula of the series to a whole new level, Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate is a fantastic addition to the Monster Hunter family, and a must-have for any hardcore lovers of brutal and challenging games.