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Feature: Ten Wii U and 3DS Games That Are Perfect For Summer - Community Choices

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Games you're playing in this sunny season

Earlier this Summer we brought you two top 10 Wii U and 3DS game lists for the season, one for retail titles and another for eShop releases. We also promised to take your suggestions from the comments in those articles for a community list; so here we are.

Naturally we've only picked 10, five for Wii U and five for 3DS, so not all of your suggestions have made it. We hope you'll agree that the three lists combined — plus our list of games perfect for kids this summer — provide plenty of excellent options.

Without further delay, let's get to it.

Wii U

A bright and colourful game in its original guise, throw in a HD resolution and enough bloom effects to blind any gamers that aren't suitably prepared, and you have an ideal title for the summer months. We featured a Zelda adventure on 3DS last time out, though we're agreed that this is a terrific title to play through during the current holiday / vacation time on Wii U.

The title alone potentially makes this platformer a strange pick, yet logically — and as pointed out to us — it could have a nice cooling effect on your mindset, if nothing else, as your body melts in the hot weather. Seems fair enough to us, and this is a game that deserves a lot of love from Wii U owners.

A game perhaps associated more typically with shifting excess weight as a result of festive gluttony in the winter, the Fit Meter that can be used with this latest entry certainly opens up its relevance to daily exercise. When out visiting the sites on holiday or near home, keeping the Meter clipped on to then sync with the software is a good way to track exercise, while you can also do some routines with the Balance Board if the summer rains come in.

This got multiple mentions — also for the 3DS version — which surprised us slightly, but perhaps when hiding from the deadly flaming ball in the sky (as this writer often has to) a bit of immersive monster hunting could be just the trick. Some of the hunting locations are quite well suited to the season, too, and the Tundra could give a similarly cooling psychological effect to Tropical Freeze. You asked, so it's here.

We almost didn't include this due to the fact that it's yet to arrive on Wii U or 3DS outside of North America, but it's exceptional and plenty of you kept yelling at us about it. A retro style with modern standards of design and physics, this is an outstanding début from Yacht Club Games, and perfect for those little gaps in time between trips out in the sun; also excellent on Nintendo's portable, if you want to take it with you on the road.


Edged out by Tomodachi Life in our last list simply due to the Mii-sim being a little fresher, it's only fair to bring the brilliant New Leaf back into the sunlight. Effortlessly charming and compulsive despite the basic premise that you have to graft and work for simple luxuries such as furniture, it remains integral to the daily gaming routine of many 3DS owners.

A gem in the 3DS library, this turn-based strategy's success reportedly did much to save the franchise from fading to irrelevance. A lengthy, challenging adventure, it does also have seasonal DLC such as Summer Scramble — in which you can gawk at male and female characters in their beach-wear — to get you in the mood for that trip to the seaside.

These lists have included fairly lengthy RPGs, suitable for travelling or lazy days lolling around at home, so this deserves an entry on those grounds alone. Critically acclaimed and having enjoyed commercial success, it's immersive and cleverly designed; well worth your time, in that case, and ideal for a portable adventure over the long season.

Now that more players are hopefully aware of this title, it's a perfect candidate for summer gaming on the 3DS — as was pointed out to us. Crisp, colourful visuals accompany excellent gameplay, in which block breaking is evolved with various environments, power-ups, scrolling levels and more. Lots of fun, and a typical level takes just a couple of minutes, so it's perfect for quick pick-up-and-play sessions.

Based in the Wild West and its underground mining area, in which a shortage of water is a regular problem for your steam-driven moves, this one certainly fits in — thematically — with any excessively hot days we may encounter. The setting does at least give a nice sense of shade, and this is an excellent game that encourages careful exploration and curiosity. Arrives on Wii U very soon, too.

So there you go, some titles that you suggested as perfect gaming for the summer season, though plenty of rather cool 3DS eShop games missed out due to the sheer volume of options available. We're not short of gaming choices right now, that's for sure.

Which Wii U game from this selection is best for summer gaming? (365 votes)

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD


Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze


Wii Fit U


Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate


Shovel Knight


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Which 3DS game from this selection is best for summer gaming? (355 votes)

Animal Crossing: New Leaf


Fire Emblem: Awakening


Bravely Default


Siesta Fiesta


SteamWorld Dig


Please login to vote in this poll.

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User Comments (47)



Falchion said:

Earthbound is a great summer game too! I have been enjoying Steamworld, Wind Waker and Shovel Knight this summer also.



KingBonesaw said:

Donkey Kong is great for the morning, I've been waking up and playing through one level a day, which takes me around half an hour (I am not good at this game but it is awesome!) Animal Crossing was my summer game last year, spent several nights going out to the island to catch expensive bugs.



LasermasterA said:

I am going to buy the Wii U version of Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate this winter. Can't wait to get some online monster hunting before Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate comes out on 3DS. Now just to get the game and transfer my save file to the Wii U version!

Till then I can try enjoying what's left of my singleplayer campaign. Now to get that Abyssal Lagiacrus armour to replace my Hallowed Jhen Armour.



Nintenjoe64 said:

I went for Wii Fit U (possibly on my own). I don't think I can go back to running and playing football without a fit meter to show me how hard I tried.

The luge and skiing are two of the most fun minigames I've ever played and it's absolutely shocking Nintendo haven't made good use of the balance board for a proper Skiing/Winter Sports or a 1080 reboot. I've not heard great things about the Mario and Sonic ones but should probably try it before passing judgement.



twadezelda3dsxl said:

@Lasermaster123 If you have a Wii U and the 3DS version of MH3U you can go online without buying the Wii U version. I bought both versions but I never use the Wii U version as I prefer it on the 3DS.



LasermasterA said:


Yea I kind of forgot to mention that I don't have the Wii U yet It is on my shopping list for this November, have been wanting to get it for ages but other things had to be bought and the 3DS was more important. Plus I can't really bring it to university can I?

Also I want to try the game on the big screen with full speakers blaring and everything.



Undead_terror said:

Well for me I play whatever I want whenever I want, but so far from the list I been enjoying Shovel Knight (3ds) a lot recently.



TwilightOniAngel said:

Shocked mario kart 8 is not on this list, i been playing that game the whole summer. But either way this is a great list, all these games are perfect for this summer heat.



sinalefa said:

Where I live we don't even have seasons so I don't really care about seasonal gaming.

I picked up Shovel Knight and the little I played was very enjoyable. Guess WWHD will have to wait a bit more before I start it.



IronMan28 said:

I'm surprised at how strong of a list both systems have. Save for Wii Fit U, they're almost all good for any time of year.



GuSolarFlare said:

@RandomNerds yeah, if you actually have that, it works just fine.
but I'd rather pretend that's not an option, so I can at least try to do some excercises.
that said, here where I live it's winter right now



Caryslan said:

For me, it's Fire Emblem Awakening and Dead or Alive Dimensions. A good quality 3D fighter is awesome year round, and DOD:A is the best fighting game on the system right now in my opinion. It helps that a good number of people are still playing it online.

So, two great summer games right there, and let's not forget about dipping into the classics on the eshop! Just downloaded The Mysterious Murasame Castle!



Ralizah said:

Animal Crossing is great for quiet, relaxing days. Wind Waker HD is a stirring adventure that brings out my inner ten-year-old boy in the best way possible. Those get my votes.



The_Ninja said:

Wind Waker is great! Gonna replay the SD version again.

And am I the only one who prefers the music in the OG version? It's not nostalgia or anything, though.



Bassman_Q said:

I've been playing Oracle of Ages on my 3DS recently; I feel like any of the GBC Zelda games are perfect for summer since they all have some sort of beach on the map.



briwipdx said:

^bluestar!!????? its the beginning of august! autumn begins at the end of oct!!! plase! don't rush this great season:)))
not everyone goes back to school at the "end of summer" ;p



RainbowGazelle said:

I personally don't understand why anyone likes Monster Hunter 3. I tried the demo and the controls were so slow and rigid that the damn game was unplayable. Capcom's barely upgraded the graphics for HD either. From what I've played, it's crap. I just don't get it.



World said:

I just want to say that I love these lists! I picked up Fluidity: Spin Cycle from the other one and I think I might get Siesta Fiesta from this list. Something about putting a game into a summer context that makes it seem more enticing.



Grumblevolcano said:

Donkey Kong and Fire Emblem easily. Amazing games which have lots of additional things to do after completing the game (such as S rank support unlocking Side Stories in Awakening and Puzzle Pieces/Hard Mode for Tropical Freeze)

@RainbowGazelle A lot of people have said that demos are not really suitable for games like Monster Hunter.



Mommar said:

You can play Shovel Knight on the 3DS as well. As a matter of fact I personally feel it's the superior version. Especially with the 3D turned up.



Ren said:

steamworld the best thing on here in my book. I really want to try Windwaker HD too, just need to get a WiiU for that.
I wish I could take things like Bravely Default seriously but there are few box art covers that are as tasteless as that. it's a fetchy, roll-some-digital-dice, rpg how the hell did they think it was appropriate to market it like it's rough Japanese Porn? I'm not being uptight I'm just pointing out what's there.



JaxonH said:

DKC Tropical Freeze and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate. I cannot stress enough how great these games are

Oh, and siesta Fiesta is a surprise gem. Like, REALLY friggin good. Couldn't believe how much I enjoyed that game!



ollietaro said:

Umm, MonHun would have been my choice for LAST summer but I guess it's ok since Animal Crossing is here, too, and I'm playing it now. Also, I know Fire Emblem: Awakening did well for the survival of the franchise but it's the most shallow and forgettable story in the FE universe. It's as if Intelligent Systems had to dumb down the story for a new audience. It's a good thing they're working on something else; S.T.E.A.M., which looks promising as Nintendo's answer to Borderlands. NLife should only include 2014 games on this list. Really? FE:A came out in 2013 and you're not putting Kirby 3DS on this list? And MonHun3U is the reason I bought a Vita so I could play Freedom Unite which is nice but really needed the updated controls the IOS version received (ie. Lock-on camera).



unrandomsam said:

@JaxonH Tropical Freeze disappointed me - I thought it was good but there was hardly any surprises and it seemed like they got rid of the much harder parts that they put in every so often into Returns. (Along with the levels where there was only one like it). Either that or I just played it too soon after.



JaxonH said:

@unrandomsam really? I found the game just as brutal and unforgiving, although much better balanced. Idk about the whole no surprises thing, I mean it's a platformer, not sure if that's the genre for such a thing. Certainly couldn't predict the worlds, bout as diverse and unpredictable as they come. Even the levels themselves within the worlds varied progressively. First in the savanna it's bright and sunny, next stage a storm, next stage the savanna catches fire from the storm, etc. And the creativity was amazing.

The dynamic camera was a real treat, and certainly the return of water levels and Dixie, and including Cranky, as well as the time attack leaderboard and video upload. Time running DCK is an art form. Time running with the right buddy is a necessity, some levels needing Dixie, some Diddy, some Cranky.

You don't truly appreciate the level design until you do time runs. That's when you realize just how amazing the level design is in the game, so expertly crafted. And nothing showcases that fact quite like the temples. You should friend me sometime and take a look at some of my temple time runs. Those temples made DKC Returns' temples seem dull and unrefined in comparison.



GhotiH said:

Already beat Fire Emblem, prefer the graphics of the GCN Wind Waker to WWHD, and the only other game on this list that interests me is Bravely Default. Not normally a fan of RPGs, but Fire Emblem was amazing, and I've heard good things about Bravely Default.



Giygas_95 said:

I voted Tropical Freeze because it's amazing and FE Awakening because I've been playing it non stop recently.



siavm said:

@GuSolarFlare there are fans and air conditions. And were I am at it has not been that bad this summer. And I have had no sweaty hand days.



King_Johobo said:

Those under water levels in Tropical Freeze when its blaring hot outside sounds like a nice way to relax
Can't wait for Summer!



Leafgreenmary said:

Rune Factory 4 and Harvest Moon A new Beginning seems like it could go on this list too. However, Fire Emblem Awakening is a masterpiece. I want a sequel or another title in the Emblem series for the 3ds!!



zool said:

Which Wii U/3ds game from this selection is best for summer gaming?

To answer this, one would have to have played all the games to know what the best is.

And having played all the games none of then would be any good since they have been played.



earthboundlink said:

I've been rocking Shovel Knight, DKC:TF, NSMBU, Mario Kart (seriously, how did that not make this list? Is anything more summery in the video game world than go kart racing?), Earthbound (for the umpteenth time), Child of Light, Assassin's Creed 3. My Poor 3DS has been neglected, except the occasional tooling around in the side missions in Awakening (seriously, that may be the best game Nintendo has made in years). But Awakening is so hard, I can't seem to beat it. May need to start over and play on normal to beat it. Can't seem to do it on Hard. And here I thought I was a Fire Emblem pro...

Nevertheless, my rehash of Earthbound and trip through Child of Light have reminded me how much I love to settle in with a good RPG. Very heavily considering Bravely Default. Screenshots look really amazing.

Man, there are so many good games for me to finish, and so many good ones to play again. It's really kind of daunting especially when the epic time suck of two versions of Smash Bros. is just waiting out there in the near future.



earthboundlink said:

@Grimlock_King That game hasn't gotten enough love. I think I actually like it better than 3D World, just because the levels are so perfect for quick pick up and play sessions.

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