It may have had a slow start at launch back in 2011, but Nintendo 3DS steadily went from strength to strength and amassed a huge library of quality titles — enough to rival the company's finest. Sure, glasses-free stereoscopic 3D turned out to be a bit of a non-starter, but the best games made great use of the feature and the ‘New’ hardware variant (which arrived in 2014) improved its ease of use considerably. Streetpass provided a genuine reason to keep the console on your person at all times and backwards compatibility with original DS carts opened an avenue to another whole console’s worth of fabulous games.

If your 3DS is collecting dust in some forgotten cupboard, you owe it to yourself to get reacquainted with the little portable; if you somehow skipped it completely, it's time to snap up some great hardware and software deals while you still can.

So, here we bring you our collection of the top 50 games for 3DS — or more accurately, your collection of the top 50 games for 3DS. As you've probably read in the tagline above, the order here is all down to you lovely people. The ranking of this sizeable selection is governed by the user ratings for each game on this very site. It will continually evolve to reflect your votes, and logged in users can interact and rate the titles directly on these pages by hovering over the rating.

Can't see your favourite on the list? Feel free to find it using the search tool below and give it a score out of 10. A game needs a minimum of 50 ratings to become eligible, so it's entirely possible to influence the ranking and get your favourite games onto the list.

Note. In order for games to become eligible, they need a minimum of 50 User Ratings in total.

50. 3D Sonic The Hedgehog 2 (3DS eShop)

M2 delivers once again and its usual flourishes and extra features open up the game to newcomers while still catering to the fans. The icing on this already gorgeous retro cake is the utterly awesome and timeless soundtrack, so grab some decent headphones before you jump in. Simply put, 3D Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is Sonic at his very best and a platforming masterclass.

49. Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past (3DS)

An island-hopping adventure spanning space and time originally released on PlayStation, Dragon Quest VII is a JRPG masterpiece. If you played the original, this 3DS version is as perfect a remake as you could ask for, with beautiful 3D graphics, a smartly streamlined opening, and lots of welcome quality-of-life updates. This journey through Estard showcases great writing, a fun class system, lovely animations and a stellar soundtrack which make for a fully engrossing adventure throughout. It's a massive game, but don't let that scare you off; with short story-style pacing and a huge variety of settings, speech patterns, and scenarios, it feels less like an epic tome and more like a shelf-ful of storybooks stuffed into a little 3DS cart. This game is an absolute pleasure, and a must-play for RPG fans.

48. Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (3DS)

Professor Layton Vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney delivers an utterly charming, enjoyable experience to satisfy fans of both franchises; it's a crossover that, when experienced, seems entirely natural. The individual parts are pleasurable and entertaining, as always, though perhaps fall a little below the exceptional standards of their main-series contemporaries, and there's a lingering sense that more gameplay innovation to blend the two brands could have been explored. These are minor complaints in the grand scheme of a lengthy adventure, but Level-5 and Capcom have done a commendable job. The end result is another 3DS title that exemplifies much of what sets Nintendo's portable hardware and supporting software apart; it provides heart-warming, accessible fun, and entertainment to last for many hours.

47. 3D Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master (3DS eShop)

It may be slightly easier than Revenge of Shinobi and its soundtrack isn't quite as toe-tappingly brilliant, but Shinobi III is at least on par with Joe Musashi's previous adventure. In some respects it's arguably superior, offering better visuals and more variety thanks to its horse-riding and surfing stages. This was one of Sega's best 16-bit action titles and made for a very solid addition to M2's fantastic 3D Classics line, a goldmine of vintage gaming on Nintendo's last dual-screened system.

46. Story of Seasons (3DS)

Story of Seasons may rightfully belong in the Harvest Moon family, but it's a strong enough entry to stand on its own. Taking familiar gameplay elements such as farming and the romance system, this title uses the framework that came before it and expands on that in many positive directions. It may not be the most polished game, with its finicky frame rate and an underwhelming 3D display, but the charming characters and satisfying gameplay make this a game worth any Harvest Moon fan's time. If you're looking to start a relaxing new virtual life full of charm and charisma, look no further than Story of Seasons.

45. VVVVVV (3DS eShop)

VVVVVV might not have the usual visual flash we've come to expect from games in recent years, but that doesn't mean it's not every bit as much fun to play. It's hard to believe that such a simple concept as flipping gravity can prove to be so enthralling, but given the game's incredibly diverse level designs, it's no wonder it's so difficult to put down. Whether you've played the game before or not, you owe it to yourself to experience it on 3DS (or Switch, if you like).

44. Monster Hunter Generations (3DS)

Monster Hunter Generations is another must-have for fans of the franchise, blending the old with the new for an excellent overall package. Hunter Styles add a little extra intensity and tempo to combat while this game also tries to welcome newcomers with optional tutorials, with Prowler mode undoubtedly designed to be quirky and alluring to players of all kinds. It does some things better than its immediate predecessor - Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate - but also a couple of things a little less impressively. The nod to nostalgia brings a lot of locations and quests to keep players busy, but loses a little of the narrative edge and focus of its predecessor. This franchise is one of the most enjoyable and immersive time-sinks to be found on Nintendo hardware. For any gamer ready for a long-term challenge, with tough battles and plenty of complexity to master, this is most certainly worth hunting down.

43. Super Mario 3D Land (3DS)

Billed as a stepping stone between the 2D and 3D games, Super Mario 3D Land scaled down the grand playgrounds of the mainline titles into smaller courses that worked better on a handheld screen. Beyond a handful of obvious and gimmicky perspective puzzles, this platformer showcased the console’s stereoscopic 3D by subtly signalling distance and perspective to the player – you weren’t relying on Mario’s shadow quite so much (a fact we more fully appreciated when we first played this game’s ‘big brother’, the excellent Super Mario 3D World on Wii U).

It was games like this and The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds which really showed off the 3DS' namesake feature and how it could enhance the gameplay experience without poking your eye out. Comfortably contained and wonderfully tailored to the hardware, this should really be in your collection already.

42. Pokémon X & Y (3DS)

Game Freak hit the nail squarely on the head once again with Pokémon X and Y. A wonderful blend of excitement and nostalgia, it evolved the core series with its impressive polygonal 3D environments and masterful camera angles, adding a few technical adjustments along with a brand new Pokémon type to the original formula that we all know and love. It's not quite a revolution, no — and is hindered slightly by the meagre use of its host platform's glasses-free 3D capabilities — but X and Y are a very fine pair.

41. Rune Factory 4 (3DS)

Rune Factory 4 might not be for everyone, but if its unique combination of fantasy farming, dating sim, and action-RPG sounds like your cup of tea, you'll have an absolute field day with this gem of a game. It's bursting with bucolic charm, backed up by masterful writing and an irresistibly positive outlook, and plays like the pinnacle of a genre it invented itself. Whether you come for the adventure, the romance, or simply the turnips, Rune Factory 4's inviting world will draw you in and give you plenty of reasons to stick around for many, many seasons to come.