With the 3DS on its final hurrah, it’s as good a time as any to look back on the quirky handheld and remember the good times. The WiiU was never anything, so Nintendo’s bread and butter has been the 3DS since 2011. What better way is there to see it off, than to count down the 8 best 3DS titles ever!?
8. Smash Bros for 3DS
I’ll admit I was a naysayer of a 3DS Smash Bros. I didn’t think the system could handle a proper Smash Bros title, but I was proven wrong. Smash Bros for 3DS is intuitive and as in depth as every smash game, and has a a wealth of characters that is just fantastic. I honestly prefer it to the WiiU title.
7. Animal Crossing: New Leaf
Show me a person who doesn’t like Animal Crossing and I’ll show you someone who’s dead inside. The cutesy Nintendo mainstay does nothing but bring pure joy into the hearts and minds of everyone who even does so much as think of it. New Leaf is the best game in the franchise so far and a fantastic 3DS must have.
6. Super Mario 3D Land
The 2D/3D Mario platformer was a sight for sore eyes when it hit the 3DS in 2011. A true Mario game to catapult the system to something that wasn’t terrible. As endlessly charming and polished as any Mario game under the sun, it wouldn’t be a Nintendo system without a proper Mario game, right?
5. Fire Emblem: Awakening
Fire Emblem: Awakening pretty much single handedly brought Fire Emblem back from the brink of death and turned it into one of Nintendo’s most bankable franchises. The JRPG/strategy game is polished to heck and a surprisingly digestible story for a JRPG. No Fire Emblem game since has been quite as good, but there’s a strong argument that Awakening is the best Fire Emblem game ever.
4. Pokemon Sun/Moon
So what if it’s two games? I gushed about Sun and Moon in my review for them on the site and my opinion hasn’t changed. I think Sun and Moon are the best Pokemon games in a long ass time, because they finally did something new and fresh with the series. Sun and Moon are games that could have only been done on the 3DS, and with the next Pokemon titles coming on the Switch, it’s a great final note for the system.
3. Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate
I was torn between putting 4 Ultimate or Generations on this list because they’re both so excellent. Monster Hunter is an art of a game, and there’s a reason it’s “big in Japan”. Playing Monster Hunter is probably the most in-depth level of gameplay I’ve ever seen, and the two most recent iterations on the 3DS are the best. I’ll say 4 Ultimate edges out Generations by having a proper story mode. If you’re looking for 200 hours to put into a 3DS game, well this is it.
2. The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time/Majora’s Mask 3D
Another cheat entry, because why not. Ocarina of Time 3D was the flagship launch title for the 3DS, and the main reason a lot of people bought it at all. A proper remake of perhaps the most beloved game of all time. Not to mention that it’s a fantastic remake to boot. Majora’s mask came later, but sure as shit it was the same. A fantastic remake of one of Nintendo’s best game ever. At the time when these came out, the only other place you could play them was the Collectors Edition GameCube disc, or buying the roms off of the eshop. The 3DS was the perfect system for remakes of these two masterpieces, and they were damn near perfect.
1. The Legend of Zelda A Link Between Worlds
This game. God damn. Link Between Worlds is a remake and also not a remake of Link to the Past. It uses the general map and overhead style of Link to the Past, but completely re-does everything else. A new villain, a new core gameplay mechanic, new dungeons, and a new story too! Link can now fuse to walls and enter a 2D world. Another new idea is that every item can just be rented at anytime, so the dungeons can be done in any order. The gameplay is unbelievably optimized, the art style is incredible, and it is an exceptional take on what is arguably the best game ever made. Link Between Worlds is in my top 5 favorite Zelda’s, maybe even my top 3, and is almost the perfect game as far as I’m concerned. Play this. Play it now.
The 3DS was great, and I will miss it. I would gladly pick up any of these games and disappear into them for a few hours right now. What are your favorite 3DS titles? Leave them in the comments!