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The 3DS is five years old, a grand age for a portable family that had a rough start but recovered to establish itself as a success for Nintendo. As it heads into - potentially - a home stretch that will include highlights such as Pokémon Sun and Moon, we've been looking at some of its best games.

We already published the Community top 10s, and for the staff equivalent we're adopting a different approach. Due to short notice and the Easter Holidays it's a smaller group that have pitched in their votes, not really a broad enough base for a 'top 10' list. Instead, then, we're just branding it as some of our favourite 3DS games, with the lists being in no particular order; they're all titles that we recommend.

Let's start with the eShop.

Rusty's Real Deal Baseball
Rusty's Real Deal Baseball

Sadly this one has never come to Europe, but is popular enough with a few of our North American writers to accumulate some votes. An undoubtedly charming free-to-start download, this has enjoyable mini-games and a rather neat negotiation mechanic in which you try and haggle with Rusty to buy extra games for less.

Pullblox / Pushmo
Pullblox / Pushmo

Nintendo may not unleash too many new IPs, but this series of puzzle games has established itself as a favourite in the eShop years. Clever 3D puzzles, combined with a lot of general cuteness, make Pullblox / Pushmo easy to recommend; it also made the community top 10.

Attack of the Friday Monsters! A Tokyo Tale
Attack of the Friday Monsters! A Tokyo Tale

This is a lovely story-driven experience from Level-5 in which you play as a young boy exploring the mysteries of local monsters. This one's all about the characters and storytelling, both of which are among the best on the portable - it's a title well worth experiencing.

Gunman Clive 1 & 2
Gunman Clive 1 & 2

It was the first title that accumulated the votes here, but this writer's also throwing in the excellent sequel as a recommendation. These can be purchased together on Wii U, which is a grand option, though these action platformers and their distinctive visual style are a great fit with the 3DS. Simple but brilliant games with plenty of nods to Mega Man and more franchises besides.

BOXBOY!
BOXBOY!

HAL Laboratory thrives on cuteness, as it's shown with the Kirby series, and in the simply titled BOXBOY! has created a simple but appealing mascot. There are some clever puzzles and a simple aesthetic that have gone down well with the Nintendo Life audience, and we're still eagerly awaiting the sequel in the West.

SteamWorld Dig
SteamWorld Dig

The 3DS eShop release that helped to put Image & Form on the map in the current generation, this title digs its way into a high position in the chart. Rusty has become a favourite and mascot for the developer, and the blend of exploration, upgrades and challenge here delivers a great combination.

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies

Capcom's been largely solid in bringing these titles to the West in download form - though we haven't had every release - and Dual Destinies played on the series' strengths while adding some modern touches and a fresh visual style. It even has quirky DLC if the main game isn't enough.

Dedede's Drum Dash Deluxe
Dedede's Drum Dash Deluxe

A bit of a surprise entry, perhaps, but this expanded spin-off from Kirby: Triple Deluxe serves up a charming rhythm gaming experience, with more content and enjoyment than some may expect. The soundtrack and lovely visuals have helped endear this to some of our team.

Shovel Knight
Shovel Knight

Not bad for a debut release. Yacht Club Games, founded by former WayForward employees, has earned itself a place at the top table of the Indie scene with its Kickstarted release and the significant - free - updates it's delivered. The fact the game even has its own amiibo shows you how highly Nintendo thinks of the studio.

Shantae And The Pirate's Curse
Shantae And The Pirate's Curse

It was a bit of a surprise that this one didn't make it into the community list, but we certainly highly recommend it. A lengthy and entertaining action platformer, the pixel-based visuals look absolutely gorgeous with the 3D effect enabled. This title shows that WayForward is still a premier development studio.

Honourable Mentions that just missed out:

Head on over to page two to see some of our favourite retail games.