Although it got off to a somewhat slow start, the Nintendo 3DS had quite an impressive year. Fans had a plethora of exciting titles to play spread across a variety of genres, from action RPGs to sports and even fighting games.
On that note, we’re proud to present the top 10 3DS games of 2011.
10. Dead or Alive Dimensions
Yes, the action slows down with 3D turned on, but we still had a blast throwing characters through windows and off cliffs in Dead or Alive Dimensions. 20-five fighters and 10 modes kept us busy for hours, while online play and StreetPass support put more of 3DS’ best features on display.
9. Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure
At first, the concept of buying toys to play a video game seemed gimmicky, not just on Xbox 360, but especially 3DS. Even if the console version was decent, there was no way Activision would invest enough time and money to make the handheld edition worthwhile, right?
Surprise, Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure is one of 2011’s surprise hits. Yes, even the portable game. Each character possesses unique abilities and attacks, which make replaying all those well-designed stages worth it. Don’t let the kiddie appearance fool you. Spyro’s good.
8. Pilotwings Resort
Despite what some people say, you didn’t have to look far to find quality games during the 3DS launch. Chief among them? Pilotwings Resort, a flying simulator that lets you explore WuHu Island (from Wii Sports Resort) in a plane, hang glider and rocket belt, completing various challenges and locating secrets. Be sure to check it out.
Head over to the 3DS eShop to experience one of the best Nintendo puzzle games in quite some time. Pushmo tasks you with pushing and pulling a series of blocks to create a path to reach a strategically placed flag. Developer Intelligent Systems designed plenty of head scratching stages, and you can even create your own “Pushmo” puzzles and share them with friends via built-in editor. We love this game.
6. Star Fox 64 3D
Do a barrel roll! Fox McCloud and the gang shine in Nintendo’s revamp of the old N64 sci-fi classic. The talented artists gave the graphics a much-needed boost, while the inclusion of players’ faces during multiplayer upped the fun; it’s better to see their reactions as their Arwings explode. Gyroscope controls were a bit lacking, but that didn’t mar this outstanding port.
5. FIFA Soccer 12
Electronic Arts made up for the abysmal Madden NFL with this exquisite portable version of FIFA, which comes with touch screen shooting, an exclusive Street mode that takes advantage of glasses free 3D, hundreds of licensed clubs and detailed players. The only thing missing? Online support. Maybe next year.
4. Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition
During the 3DS launch, Capcom made the biggest splash with a near perfect console port of its critically acclaimed brawler. Featuring some of the best graphics for a 3DS title, 35 World Warriors, online play and even StreetPass support, Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition is the quintessential handheld brawler, and without question one of the best reasons to own Nintendo’s system.
3. Mario Kart 7
Rev your engines with the latest entry in the beloved kart racing series. Part seven introduces first person play, gyroscope controls, vehicle customisation and hang gliders, giving everyone a chance to soar through the air collecting gold coins.
New features aside, the game still retains that classic Mario Kart feel, with red turtle shells, banana peels and of course, Rainbow Road.
2. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D
Nintendo was wise to bring the timeless N64 adventure to 3DS, but this is more than a simple port. While the story and beautiful audio remain intact, a touch screen inventory system, gyroscope controls (Link’s slingshot) and enhanced graphics introduced Ocarinato a new generation, as well as longtime fans looking to enjoy the most complete version available.
1. Super Mario 3D Land
OK, the outcome was predictable, but there was no denying Super Mario 3D Land’sgreatness. The plumber’s newest journey through the Mushroom Kingdom is full of exciting moments, from hovering with the Tanooki Suit to searching for Star Coins and then unlocking the secret levels. Oh, and you can play through the entire game as Luigi.
Bottom line, this is pure Nintendo goodness from start to finish, the one game every 3DS owner should have in his or her personal collection.