30. Fantasy Life (3DS)
Given the game’s relative age, Fantasy Life isn’t the shiniest toy on the 3DS’ shelf, but it just may be the happiest. Providing quality gameplay in both its life sim and action RPG aspects, served up with more colourful wit and charm than anyone could ask for, it serves as a jewel in the crown of a games studio that helped create some of the most memorable role-playing video games ever. It may now be 1-UP Studios, but Brownie Brown hit its marks with Level 5 in this game. As a farewell for the company in its old guise, this was an excellent game for the occasion.
29. Mario Kart 7 (3DS)
The DS entry in the series did a marvellous job of giving players the full-blooded 3D experience, but 3DS’ extra horsepower made this feel more like a home console release than ever before. Mario Kart 7 (the first game in the series to have a number at the end of its title, fact fans) is perhaps one of the finest racers ever made, and certainly one of the best on the 3DS.
Bringing back coins during races and introducing vehicle customisation and underwater driving to the series, its excellent autostereoscopic 3D once again proved that, in the right hands, the system's namesake feature could really add some special sauce, helping flesh out the world just that little bit more. Booting it up now makes us miss having the option — roll on Nintendo 3DSwitch! (Calm down, that’s a joke… or is it?)
28. Shin Megami Tensei IV (3DS)
A console blessed with an abundance of games, 3DS has done particularly well in the RPG department. This example offers top-shelf dungeon-crawling, a deep battle system that sees you fighting and collecting demons across the elemental spectrum and an excellently written story, not to mention the soundtrack. With so many games and so little time, there’s no shame in Easy mode, either, but Shin Megami Tensei IV is a game to savour for fans or newcomers alike.
27. Fire Emblem Fates (3DS)
Following the 'revival' of the series, Fire Emblem Fates stepped things up a gear with a two-pronged assault. Comprised of two separate games, the Birthright campaign had you siding with your blood relatives in Hoshido while Conquest saw protagonist Corrin siding with the kingdom of Nohr. The latter choice upped the difficulty to old-school levels and asked a little more from the player, but regardless of the path you took, you were guaranteed a lengthy campaign that built on the foundation of Awakening and added a host of extras including more varied and interactive battlefield environments, the ability to bring past heroes into the game via their amiibo figures and, very importantly, feet for the characters. After all, 3DS was all about stability.
And if two paths weren't enough for you, Nintendo kindly provided a third option, Pokémon-style, with the DLC campaign Revelation in which Corrin refused to pick sides. Best enjoyed once you've polished off the previous campaigns, it was another triumphant part of a fabulous Fire Emblem feast. Fates was nothing if not substantial, and while the story can feel like it's dragging at times, it's tough to hold too many grudges against padding since the core loop is so polished and fun.
26. Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns (3DS)
25. Bravely Default (3DS)
Wisely eschewing its Flying Fairy subtitle in the west, this JRPG has fine pedigree and shook up some of the dustier elements of the genre with its eponymous Brave/Default mechanic, but still retained the customary hero’s tale and beautiful presentation of Square Enix’s finest titles. It’s a hell of a ride and aside from some questionable (though relatively unobtrusive) microtransactions, it’s up there (along with its direct sequel, Bravely Second: End Layer) with the finest 3DS exclusives and well worth going back to if you missed it first time round.
24. Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story + Bowser Jr.'s Journey (3DS)
The most recent entry on the list, this spruce up of the DS original did more than enough to impress us and (hopefully along with the upcoming Kirby’s Extra Epic Yarn) give the console a truly great swansong. With updated visuals, a brand-new side story involving Bowser Jr. and the ability to speed up gameplay, it’s the best version of arguably the best of the Mario & Luigi RPG series – of course it’s on the list! Plus, you get to root around in the intestines of a giant fire-breathing lizard. What’s not to like?
23. Kirby: Triple Deluxe (3DS)
Kirby: Triple Deluxe is a pleasant platforming package that doesn’t push the envelope very far. The Story Mode is an elegant but conservative adventure that trades too greatly in familiarity and simplicity, the same type of neo-nostalgia that Nintendo courts so successfully with the Mario and Zelda franchises. Triple Deluxe is sure to scratch that Kirby itch — or create one for new players — but fails to move the franchise forward in any meaningful direction. However, the rest of the package holds its own quite well and went on birthed more than one standalone titles with Kirby Fighters and Dedede's Drum Dash. A fine introduction to Kirby's brand of adventuring, then.
22. Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon (3DS)
By the time this sequel arrived, people had come around to Luigi’s Mansion. The GameCube original rubbed those expecting a Mario game at launch the wrong way, but with suitably adjusted expectations most players came to appreciate the beauty and comedy of Luigi’s haunted house exploits. Next Level’s sequel brought to fruition the planned stereoscopic 3D of the original to fantastic effect, making the mansion in Dark Moon really feel like a diorama as the green plumber tip-toes around sucking up ghosts and coins. A port of the original also came to 3DS, and they’re both excellent ways to prepare for the upcoming Luigi’s Mansion 3 on Switch.
21. Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D (3DS)
Another of the home console games to migrate to the handheld, Retro’s Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D took us back to the sidescrolling antics of Rare’s classic SNES series, updating it with beautiful new graphics and mechanics. This version includes an extra world and the system’s stereoscopic 3D once again enhances the experience, turning those lush environments into mesmerising dioramas that have you playing about with the 3D slider like a kid. The game slots perfectly into the console’s collection of quality platformers, and that soundtrack is pretty great through headphones, too.
Eurgh, not great choices for the top ten. A port is number one?
EDIT: Just realised it's based on rankings and not done by the NL staff. Serves me right for skim reading
Well, Zelda kinda dominated the top 5.
The fact that SteamWorld Heist and SteamWorld Dig have places on this list, but SteamWorld Dig 2 does not really is telling of the death of the 3DS.
Yes, SteamWorld Dig 2 had a 3DS release!
I'm disappointed in the lack of Codename: Steam, but this is otherwise an excellent list. I'm especially happy to see Steamworld: Heist and Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward so deservedly high on the list.
@RupeeClock The 3DS was dead to me after Samus Returns.
Metroid: Samus Returns has some of the best 3D effects on the 3DS.
Need to replay that one. Hope it will be ported to switch.
Seeing this list of the 50 best helps me be certain I made the right choice in skipping the 3DS altogether.
I'm not trying to knock it, but there are barely any games of real interest to me personally. Samus Returns, Starfox 3D, Kid Icarus, and Link Between Worlds are the only ones I'm mildly interested to play, but it's just not enough.
I just wish the 3DS didn't go out the way it did, it honestly had a near perfect library. So many great games...
No etrian odyssey the greatest RPG series ever !
It's strange that the best selling game by far is ranked so low (Mario Kart 7). Likewise, NSMB2 was one of the big system sellers (5th best seller on the system), yet it didn't make the list?
C'Mon, having no Stella Glow in the list is criminal. Persona Q is not better than some of the Etrian Odissey. Ports and collection of Retro games and no mention on unique best value games like Drancia Saga or Fairune.
Really to far from my personal list.
A really interesting list, not the usual placements and it just shows how awesome the library is.
I’ve recently discovered the joys of Atlus and SRPGs so I think Devil Survivor Overclocked will be mine come next payday.
I'm just glad three zeldas are in the top 5. No complaints here... 😄
One page is all it takes, scrolling in love with me - possibility? One page is all you need.
"Grecco" haha Pretty sure it was Grezzo who ported Ocarina of Time 3D
The 3DS library is fantastic! A perfect mix of genres, with both excellent remakes/ports of classic games and great new titles that will be considered classics in the future.
Where is WarioWare?
Majora's Mask is my favorite video game of all time. That said, neither it nor Ocarina belong on this list. They were great 20 years ago on the N64. The 3DS can stand on it's own two feet.
@JMR_Alden Ha, corrected 😉
There is no Pullblox in the eShop in NA...
This was not a good list.
I can't recommend Frogger 3D enough. A real overlooked game and is in my top 10 for sure. Also Shinobi, both early system titles that are just amazing.
Lovely list of games all together. The 3ds is my favorite video game system ever and this list just works on demonstrating why. Great titles from a variety of Nintendo and 3rd party properties.
That being said, can we please stop putting Ocarina of Time on the top of every list. As someone who was born in the middle of the N64 era and grew up after it's conclusion, I didn't play OoT until the 3ds remake. Honestly, it's a great game. But the amount of dated design choices and flaws within keeps it well away from my favorite of all time. Obviously this is a community voted list and I'm not going to ask everybody to just ignore their nostalgia. I just get a little tired of seeing it brought up so often when plenty of other games have taken what it did and improved upon it.
All pokémon games should be way higher. Also, it's funny that Sun and Moon are higher than their enhanced versions. Yes, they carry the old sin of being a very similiar experience, but thery're better games nonetheless
All I can say about the 3ds is: WHAT a library!!!
I'd easily mention 20 3ds games I love that are not in this list. It doesn't mean my best games list is the only one. I'm saying that the system has a huge offer of great games in all styles. Just awesome!
Heads-up guys: LOZ: Ocarina of Time didn't launch with the 3DS, it came out about 3 months after the handheld was released. PilotWings, Ridge Racer and Street Fighter IV were the big launch games!
@Klunk23 That's interesting. I only played it with the 3DS version a few years back, and I definitely feel that it still holds up to this day, and it's one of my all time favorite games. I really enjoyed the gameplay, and even the midi tracks were great, in my opinion. To each their own, I guess.
@pkee What's the best launch title of all time? It's a game you should remember. It's Ridge Racer!
@tanasten iv got my big box copy of stella glow. Problem is nobody has really ever heard of it so it won't appear on a fan ranking list
@MrDisappointed Honestly, that's completely fine. I really enjoyed my time with the game and would definitely put it amongst my favorite Zelda games. And for the most part, the game does hold up well (a testament to how revolutionary the game was for it's time). It just didn't stand out to me as being so far greater than every other game ever made that we need to have dozens of different reviews and articles in modern time referring to it as "the greatest game of all time."
Love your profile picture by the way.
@Klunk23 That's perfectly understandable. I tend to find it annoying when one thing is consistently hailed as being the greatest of all time myself. Funnily enough, about the only time I've ever agreed with that is with Ocarina of Time. Still, I'm glad not everyone feels the same way. Otherwise, it would become pointless to ever read another "Best game of all time" list.
Oh, and I'm glad you like the pic!
Never had a 3DS but jumped on the Switch wagon and I’m in love with that console.
Ocarina is on spot even tho it’s a remaster.
Sometimes the readers can disappoint too. Very nope list.
Great article and some great games on that list.The 3ds was my favourite handheld and unlike a lot of people I absolutely loved the 3D feature..I had the 3D bar up full for every game.
Unfortunately I bought a 3DS XL just before the Switch and after transferring all my data over I realized the 3D on the big screen was extremely bad and made my eyes go weird lol.
I've gotta say though my faves were easily Fantasy Life,Tales of The Abyss and Zelda A Link Between Worlds.
Zelda Majoras Mask is a game I bought just before the Switch so I have only played two hours worth..
If nothing else, I suppose it's a more interesting list than if the staff had done it, where it probably would have just been the biggest, most obvious Nintendo releases in descending order (and probably with a Switch game at #1 somehow haha). I can't imagine it would have had the highest Super Mario, Mario Kart, Smash Bros and Pokemon games entering at #24, #38, #19 and #29 respectively.
A few games that I would have liked to have seen in there are: Super Street Fighter IV, Mighty Switch Force, Attack of the Friday Monsters, Inazuma Eleven 3.
@Haywired maybe we'll do another where we pick out the staff highlights, but this article is to decide what the general opinion of the best games on this platform - everyone's vote counts
@Medic_alert yeah i didnt really like Samus Returns either. Really really joyless. Ended up trading and it in and not finishing more than a third of it.
Great to see Heist up so high. Actually prefer that over Dig 1 and 2. Hope they sequel it.
My personal top 5:
5. Mario Kart 7
4. Mario Golf: World Tour
3. Pokemon Sun/Moon
2. Pokemon Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire
1. Animal Crossing New Leaf
A Link Between Worlds and Ocarina of Time made it very close to making my top 5!
This list is great, and considering I could easily add another awesome 50 games on top of that without thinking very hard about it, proves to me once again why the 3ds is my favorite system of all time.
I still have a backlog about a mile long of games to play and complete, and I am definitely not ready to put this wonderful system to rest yet.
On a side note: I am really considering buying a back up system for when my new 3ds xl finally bites the dust. Anyone else thought of doing this?
@Dang69 Heist is such a great game. I am on my 3rd play thru now.
No mention of Stella Glow, Etrian Odyssey, or any Dragon Quest Game? And yet you put Pokemon Sun and Moon and Pokemon Ultra Sun and Moon on the list? The 3ds has a goldmine of great RPGs and you put two mediocre ones in the list. Heck, I would've even put Monster Hunter Stories on the list instead of those.
@iLikeUrAttitude when you say, "you", you mean the community right? We didn't put anything on this list, you did!
@antdickens My apologies I didn't realize I missed the vote
I think it was a cool idea. User polls can often be absolutely awful, but doing it by User Score (ie. results that have accumulated over time, rather than just being an on-the-spot answer swayed by current trends and opinion) is pretty interesting. Plus, as a keen user of the site's User Score feature, it's nice to feel that one has contributed to it even just a little.
@Medic_alert I very much agree with you on your opinion of Metroid Samus Returns. I beat it and felt like it was just ok. I really feel like people were so starved for metroid that it got such high ratings but overall it felt like a 6/10 to 7/10 for me. I feel like there are other and better metroidvania games out there for people to be looking at and it's hard to recommend Samus Returns when stuff like Hollow Knight exists.
@iLikeUrAttitude haha, you haven't missed the vote, it's an ever-changing list as you can add your ratings at any time.
@Guitar_bard @Guitar_bard It's a huge part of why I'm day 1-ing Quest. Quest's gameplay doesn't seem to be my bag, but neither would I have thought Heist was either.
As minimal as the updates were, Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon are still enhanced versions of Sun & Moon, so why have so many people ranked them lower, and how could Nintendo Life consider the old versions the best Pokémon games ever made (even if you do think they beat out HeartGold/SoulSilver, which is very questionable)?
Was mystified as to why so many of my favourite games were missing. But then realised DS games weren't included. When you add them in... wow, what a back catalogue.
Mario 3D Land is far too low on the list, it's easily a top 10 game. We're talking about a game that almost single handily saved the 3DS from having an early death. Without the 3DS rescuing the Wii U, it could be a very different Nintendo today. I realize this isn't a definitive place for it cause it's just how the votes lined up, but I'm just saying how incredibly important that game was to Nintendo.
That aside... This list really speaks to the 3DS's strength. It really has one of the best game libraries of all time.
Horrible list is horrible.
With me being super careful with my switch, I still bring my 3DS or 2DS to work with me for lunch time. Thanks for the list!
>Smash, ORAS, Samus Returns aren't in the Top 10.
>Fates ranks higher than Smash.
>Ocarina dominates the list.
Are you kidding me?
Elsewhere it's Bejewled and Farmville....
My Top 20 3DS games right now :
1. Animal Crossing New Leaf
3. Tomodachi Life
4. Fantasy Life
5. Disney Magical World 2
6. Pokemon X
7. LEGO CITY Undercover: The Chase Begins
8. Mario Kart 7
9. Pokemon Alpha Sapphire
10. Paper Mario Sticker Star
11. Dillon's Dead Heat Breakers
12. Nintendogs + Cats
13. Style Savvy Fashion Forward
14. Cooking Mama 5: Bon Appetit
15. Cooking Mama 4: Kitchen Magic
16. Super Mario 3D Land
17. Mario Party Island Tour
18. The Sims 3 Pets
19. Pokemon Sun
20. New Super Mario Bros 2
Animal Crossing is the best game on the console. No competition.
While I generally agree with this list - nearly all of those games deserve it IMO - I really wish some later titles in the 3DS's lifespan made it on there. I feel that Ever Oasis deserves a spot, as does Bravely Second (which I think is slightly better than Default). Unfortunately those didn't have enough user ratings to make the list.
@Link41: It's called Pushmo over here.
Um Dragon Quest VIII
A Link between Worlds was...not that good. It was good, but not for a Zelda game. Even setting aside the Zelda name, it was ONLY good.
The 3DS has so many amazing games. Half of my 20 is not even on the Nintendo Life top 50. Here's my top 20, based mostly on hours played (I did not included virtual console games):
Mario 3D Land
Rusty's Real Deal Baseball
Mario Kart 7
Mario Golf World Tour
Mario Tennis Open (replaced by Mario Sports Super Stars)
Zelda OoT 3D
Paper Mario Star Sticker
DKC Returns 3D
Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask
Luigi's Mansion Dark Moon
Zelda-Link Between Worlds
Pocket Card Jockey
Puzzles and Dragons
Mario Paper Jam
Code Name STEAM
Rhythm Heaven MegaMix
Waro Ware Gold
Kirby Planet Robobot
Good to see Pullblox on there. Would like to see that on switch!
@Der Go out the way it did? It went out the exact same way all Nintendo systems do, except that it lasted a bit longer than the average 5 years
@BulbasaurusRex That's the danger of statistics. I'm guessing different people played and rated the Ultra versions than the originals, and they just didn't like the game as much. A coincidence more than anything else.
Note: Nintendo Life said that Kirby's Extra Epic Yarn was the best version of the game, despite rating it a 9/10 while they rated the Wii version a 10/10
Ugh this list is more like a best seller list, which does not.necessarily imply games that truly are good or fun. 🤷🏻♀️
@Anti-Matter your list is WAY better than theirs. You actually have a lot of fantastic games on that list! 😍
Becoming major in Animal Crossing: New Leaf...
No one ever gets these lists right.
My top 3ds game list is............. I have not made a list yet, and I disagree with this list!
@locky-mavo Technically no ones list will please everyone.
@Decapre Then add your own raatings to help make it less horrible (but please do NOT do 0 or 10 spam rankings). This is a completely user generated list, not something they ranked themselves.
@ALinkttPresent That still doesn't explain why NL themselves just now implied that the original Sun and Moon are the better games by saying they're the best Pokémon games Game Freak has ever released.
EDIT: Oh wait, I get it! This list automatically updates while automatically drawing the descriptions from the original reviews. Never mind.
Hey where are the EVER OASIS FANS???
That game deserves to be in a good spot!
No Rhythm Paradise (Heaven) Megamix? It's easily one of the best games on the system (definitely top 5 material), and it's kind of a big name, being published by Nintendo. For example, it was pretty much infinitely better than the kinda similar Rhythm Thief (which was also a good game), but I guess that one had the benefit of being a near-launch title.
It's nice to see Shantae 3 so high up, though.
Skipping it as a full-priced system plus full-priced games is ok I guess but if nowadays you have the chance to pick it up cheap, and enjoy 3D effects, go for it (the New model, for the actually useable 3D effect). You will have a great time for sure!
The 31 Best Nintendo 3DS Games of All Time
by Nintendo Life
Good lord so many games i have get to play. In 10 years i will still find hidden gems on the 3ds. God bless you beautiful dual screens
@iLikeUrAttitude Hey, the Pokémon games are fantastic, certainly better than the mediocre Etrian Odyssey games that have no real plot, lame chibi graphics, and force you into that stupid map drawing mechanic.
See, I can state my own just as valid opinions as fact, too. Just because you think those games are better RPGs does not necessarily mean the majority of us agree.
Cheese, isn't 50 ratings a rather strict benchmark to use? It leaves out gems like "Stella Glow," which would've been close to appearing on this list had it not had "only" 39 ratings.
I don’t think ports should count. But I also refer to my 3ds as a portable Zelda device.
My top 5
Zelda lbtw, binding of Isaac, Mariokart7, dreamworld heist, and Metroid Samus returns. Until I got my switch, 3ds/ds were by far my fav console ever.
@NintendoLife In Animal Crossing: "Becoming major" I believe you meant "Mayor".
Thank-you for including my all time favorite game...even if you had it 10 slots lower than I would have put it.
Xenoblade Chronicles is so undervalued and so many people have never tried it. I'm really hoping for an HD version on the Switch!
Plz port NES remix to switch. I would love that and Ocarina of Time to hit the system though I feel an oot port would be a ways off with Nintendo’s online service only offering NES games w/ a slow release schedule and no Virtual Console.
Brain Age Concentration Training is incredible. It runs at 60fps and has perfect responsiveness. I played Smart As on Vita recently and thought that the choppy graphics took most of the enjoyability out of it. Of course Brain Age also has tons of fun games like a weird version of Dr Mario, blockhead, golf solitaire, Klondike solitaire, Blob Blast, Music Appreciation (yes, I like this!), Word Space Attack, etc. The only thing missing is the excellent Sudoku game from Brain Training 2 on DS...
Super Mario Maker is probably my favorite game on 3DS. Yes the Wii U version is better, but it's still awesome on 3DS. The tutorial and conversation of the woman and the pigeon is fun, helpful, entertaining, and is a wonderful addition to the 3DS version of Mario Maker.
Picross 3D round 2 is simply incredible.
Culdcept Revolt is the best Culdcept game ever, and it runs at 60fps in 3D and looks amazing.
Ultimate NES remix is a blast.
Return to Poplocrois is great.
Mario Golf World Tour is a wonderful and very playable golf game that I wish would come to Switch at 60fps.
I really enjoyed playing through Yoshi's New Island with it's incredible 3D at 60fps graphics and fun gameplay!
Adventure Time hey ice King why'd you steal our garbage is a beautiful and fun 3D at 60 frames per second take on the Zelda 2 style rpg.
Harmo Knight is fun.
Ikachan is very cute and a fun little game.
Pushmo, Crashmo, and Stretchmo are fantastic puzzle games that all run at 60fps in 3D. These are among the best puzzle games I've ever played! Bring a new one to Switch!
Dedede's Drum Dash Deluxe is just charming. It is another example of perfect responsiveness matched with beautiful 3D at 60fps graphics. I adore this little gem!
Ketzal's Corridors is totally unique and fun. It has great presentation with great music and super smooth,and very impressive 3D at 60fps graphics. The smooth 3D graphics are especially impressive in this case because of the 3D movement in the puzzle gameplay. Such a stellar game!
These are DSi games, but I have to list them because they're among the best games one can play on 3DS: Bird & Beans(should be called Pyoro), Escapee Go!, Photo Dojo, Dark Void Zero, Paper Airplane Chase (another great mini game from the original Warioware! This one has a fun 2 player simultaneous on one 3DS game system), Boxlife(best music ever!), Pictobits, Trajectile, and many more!
I don't get these comments. Why are there so many miserable people on here?
I'd rank a few things differently, for example where is Radiant Historia? Xenoblade should have been ranked higher, and personally I find Animal Crossing to be terribly boring after trying it many times. That being said it's far from garbage.
OoT is objectively the greatest game of all time.
Link Between Worlds > Ocarina of Time
Also, where's 7th Dragon and Radiant Historia?
Where tf is Ever oasis, playing rn and its better than some of this games
A bit of a joke that so many remakes are in the top 50, especially right at the top of the list. My top 10 with NL rank in brackets:
10 Shovel Knight (5)
09 Pokemon X & Y (39)
08 The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds (2)
07 Super Smash Bros (14)
06 Animal Crossing: New Leaf (8)
05 Super Mario 3D Land (17)
04 Fire Emblem: Awakening (4)
03 Star Fox 64 3D (46)
02 Metroid: Samus Returns (13)
01 Mario Kart 7 (38)
I'm quite disgusted Mario Kart 7 was so low. It's easily a top 10 game on any measure.
Finally a ranked list!
I'm not surprised the top 3 were all Zelda
@starlac @Fandabidozi That still kinda works
Not a bad list but Resident Evil Revelations should be in the top 10
I'm surprised the Pokemon games and Mario Kart 7 were so low down in the list. Was expecting a Zelda game to be at number one but thought it would be A Link Between Worlds because it's not a port.
@infernogott I can't understand why WarioWare isn't on there either, it deserves a place in the top 50.
These are the big ones for me.
1. Stella Glow
2. Shin Megami Tensei 4/Apocalypse
3. Bravely Default/Second
4. Theathrhythm Curtain Call
5. Persona Q/ Etrian Odyssey series
I'd you want to count ports then there is also amazing stuff like Devil Survivor Overclocked and Strange Journey Redux too. 3DS truly was an amazing system for Someone like me who lovea JRPGs.
@TossedLlama Wii U.
My personal favorite 3DS games in no order:
Kid Icarus Uprising
Animal Crossing New Leaf
Virtue’s Last Reward
Pokémon X and Y
Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire
The Legend of Zelda A Link Between Worlds
The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time
The Legend of Zelda Majora’s Mask
Super Smash Brothers
New Style Boutique (Style Savvy)
Anyone else seeing Kirby Planet Robobot at both #11 and #10? What’s up with that?
No Ever Oasis! :´(
@eaglesfly76 It must've bumped up a ranking before you switched pages. Go back and see what's now at #11. This is an automatically updating list, after all.
@HalBailman Yeah, "Mario Kart 7" is great, but not necessarily Top 10 great. I only rated it an 8 because of its lousy Battle Mode.
@BulbasaurusRex Battle Mode is so SNES era. That's the only time it's been really good. I don't think I've even looked at Battle Mode in MK7, and only played it a little in MK8D. For it to be ranked at 38 is ridiculous, and if all the remakes and ports were removed from this list, MK7 should easily be top 10. It's my third favourite MK ever! MKDS the best, then MK8D.
streetpass is still one of the best ideas Nintendo has had.
@HalBailman No, having a good Battle Mode is very important for a Mario Kart game, especially for a handheld entry with very limited local multiplayer (and no Mission Mode like in the DS version).
I don't know about the original SNES version (I've never bothered with it due to the lousy basic gameplay), but 64, Double Dash, and 8 Deluxe have great Battle Modes that add a lot of value to those entires, as opposed to the terrible Battle Modes in Wii, 7, and the Wii U version of 8. It simply doesn't deserve a Top 10 ranking without a good Battle Mode. You can't just remove the remakes and the ports from the list, anyway.
@BulbasaurusRex No. Battle Mode is a bonus. The core is the racing, and 3DS you can play wireless multiplayer on a single game card. Only the character selection is restricted to Shy Guy. Not sure what "very limited" means in that regard, as Battle Mode only works best with humans anyway, and again MK7 allows single game card play. It's the least limited of all the handheld versions, and easily the leading multiplayer title on the system. To be ranked 38th is an outrage!
The SNES Battle Mode was the best Battle Mode because the courses were basic, the items balanced, and limited to 1 vs 1 made it the purest form. It's the only one I played for extended time.
Man the 3DS is such an amazing little console, it's become my second favourite format of all time, only below the GameCube for me.
I'm gonna give some love to a very underrated and overlooked 3DS game - Hey Pikmin, i really feel like this game is so much better than the reviews would have you believe, in fact it's quite clever how it translates Pikmin's complex strategy gameplay into 2D, it even has some great levels where the blue and winged pikmin really get to shine, something the main series could learn from.
My Top 10 would be different to this, for me, Luigi's Mansion 2 is the best game on the system, it pushes the 3DS to it's limits i feel -
1. Luigi's Mansion 2
2. Mario 3D Land
3. Kid Icarus Uprising
4. Fire Emblem Awakening
5. Metroid:Samus Returns
6. Zelda:A Link Between Worlds
7. Kirby Triple Deluxe
8. Donkey Kong Country Returns
9. Pokemon X/Y
10. Hey Pikmin
I saw “the 50 best Nintendo 3DS games”... “as voted by you”... and thought “strange, I visit this site everyday (well, whenever I can anyway 😁) and don’t remember being asked to vote”.
Then I saw it was based upon the user ratings. That’s when it all made sense. 👍
No tomodachi life???
I definitely have some differing opinions to this list. I really disagree with how high up FE Fates and Metroid Samus Returns are. As much as I wanted to like these, as I love both franchises, I hated them and found them a complete chore to finish.
On the other hand, I’m glad to see Kirby Planet Robobot so high up. I loved that game, it was a complete surprise.
Just thinking back to when I first got my 3DS and played Ocarina of Time and Mario 3D Land, it feels so long ago, and it is! The 3DS has had such a long innings, and it’s been great!
Should have been a top 100, the 3DS has an amazing and large library.
A shout out to the StreetPass games. I know they could be a pain to play, but I really enjoyed them anyway.
@Rinari Great RPGs. Playing through DQ8 at the moment. Etrian Odyssey V was a surprise hit for me with its map drawing mechanics. I found it fun to meticulously draw maps on the touch screen as I explored the dungeons. It's a niche series and if old school first person dungeon crawling RPGs are your jam, then I'd totally recommend it. Story is pretty much non existent though.
Back on topic, you fools need to play more Etrian Odyssey. The 3DS Gods are displeased.
I think its a pity that the best game is just a remake. Yeah, I know its a great remake to the greatest game of all time. But still.
As for me: Hard to choose. The best ones are:
Luigi's mansion 2
Kid Icarus uprising
Mario and Luigi Dream team
Kirby triple deluxe and planet Robobot
Fire emblem awakening
Mario 3d land
Paper mario sticker star (yes, mock me)
@Henmii Paper Mario Color Splash was the game that put me off the series, so I never gave Sticker Star a chance even though I have the game. I really wanted to like Color Splash, but it never got to an enjoyable point for me after a reasonable amount of hours. I love the aesthetics and the witty dialogue, but the card based RNG combat mechanics just wasn't fun. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy turn-based card games, but Color Splash did it in a way that didn't reward thoughtful deck building.
I loved all the Paper Mario games so far. That said, I would love it if they returned to the original rpg's. But with a diverse cast of characters. But it doesn't look very likely. And if it does happen, it wil just be Bowser, Goomba's and Koopa's. You know, your typical characters.
"Don't get me wrong, I enjoy turn-based card games, but Color Splash did it in a way that didn't reward thoughtful deck building"
If you where looking for thoughtful deck building, then yeah this game isn't the game for you.
Im not even shocked BOXBOY! is on this list. You guys need to do some research. Box boy was a title that let people homebrew on the 3ds.
@Klunk23 Regarding why Ocarina of Time always is at the top of lists...see this:
Great system, and excellent games. Personally I rank Bravely Default as one of my all-time favorites, basically a Final Fantasy for 3DS in all but name. Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem deserve their high placement, ruled my life for months, and are my most anticipated new games on Switch.
My #1 3DS game though? Streetpass Mii Plaza. I've collected thousands of Miis (not to mention the Spotpass Miis like Iwata ;_; Aonuma and Reggie) and played the minigames for probably hundreds of hours. I miss Streetpass on the Switch.
@Lespzzli Tomodachi Life was highly entertaining, surprised it's not on the list!
@locky-mavo The list is ranked by the user ratings on this site's 3DS game section, so take it with a grain of salt.
Say it with me: "Detective...Pika...chu!" And seriously, I play on my 2DS every day!
The top 10 is done from averages and on avarage the 3 Zelda games feature in more top 5 lists for the 3ds than sny other game... some ppl put oot 3ds 3rd or 4th or even 5th but because so many ppl rank it so high and because when push comes to shove it is the best version of the game and it did sell decent numbers, it sort of does deserve to be there, if not there then at least second.
I know its a port but its one of the best games ever made and even after playing it 3 times on my n64 to completion i was still able to play the 3ds version and fully enjoyed it again.
Even saying that i still kinda feel bad about having to admit a port was really the best game on the 3ds, despite the sheer amount of good games.
I can't take a top 10 list with Animal Crossing in it seriously.
Happy to see Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask so high.
I was hoping that Castlevania Mirror of fate would make at least 30-50. It was not a bad game and it is one of the best looking and complete games on the system!
3D land should be number 1.
Girl, Sun and Moon are awful, what do you mean "best Pokemon games ever"?
Annoying storyline, hand holding, annoying characters who stop you from moving every time you take 10 steps, pandering to Gen 1 fans due to Pokemon GO, lack of gyms, too much dialogue that says nothing besides "we live in the island with the island Kahuna who rules over this island, where we all live in. The island!".
Shut up, go find your smoke ball yourself, and let me explore the areas/catch Pokemon!!
@Timsworld2 We got Smash back in August 2014 here in the Americas, yet they claim it was out a month before the Wii U release. This site already panders too much to European readers, yet there's a reason why Europe doesn't get as many releases (let alone physical) as the Japanese or Americans...
Zelda doesn't really do it for me, so the top of the list isn't too appealing to me. Monster Hunter is the only game in the top ten I really loved.
Good list, yet there are some personal faves of mine which didn't make the list:
@Timsworld2 They're lazy all over the place tbh. Western studios make little to no effort to publish their own games in Japan or Asia. Vice versa, Japanese publishers play hot potato with the rights to publish and distribute games in Europe (especially AA or smaller titles).
No New Super Mario Bros 2? Was I the only one who loved that game?
I was hoping it would have placed.
Oh, man…so many things happening! Nice info! So, this link came up in my feed and it sound a bit too good to be true – to get paid by playing games…can anyone tell me if it works? Here goes the link: https://tinyurl.com/yxo5eqnl
Ocarina of Time is my favorite game ever made, and it's my top played game on my 3DS.
I disagree with this list so much. That's nothing new. I just would at the very least give preference to new games over meh remakes like Ocarina of Time 3D/Majora's Mask 3D. There were so many great NEW games on the 3DS. It's sad that OOT3D would be the #1 title for the 3DS in any list. It did nothing special at all, it isn't even an outstanding remake, it's very conservative (so conservative it is like a remastered port) and I, someone who adored OOT to pieces, considered it a complete waste of money.
It really casts shade on the fantastic NEW games that actually define the 3DS like Animal Crossing New Leaf to rank such a remake above everything else. Should we not be giving credit to the games that are actually native to the 3DS?
@Punisher67 My Switch is on a well deserved vacation because I'm about a hundred hours in Persona Q2 (and ready to face the final boss but not at a 100% completion besides that), the last true 3DS game release (sadly lacking 3D images...), the, what... seventh(?) EO game on it (the second EO game that isn't an ACTUAL EO game).
Not even the Monster Hunter series comes close to the total amount of hours played.
And EO needs a (3)DS (or Wii U, but those chances are zero) to work, so I'd argue it's one of, if not THE best series on it.
But ah well, this is the consumer rating, and consumers rarely consume what wasn't spoon-fed to them I suppose.
But wait, all these fans on here keep arguing with me that if Nintendo said it, then it's true, despite lies in the past like DS isn't replacing GBA, 3DS isn't replacing DS, Switch isn't replacing Wii U, so NOW Nintendo is honest that Switch Lite isn't replacing 3DS when they've lied so many times in the past- I'll just leave this link from 2016 as proof they are rarely honest (yes, they actually said Wii U and Switch would coexist!): https://kotaku.com/nintendo-denies-its-ending-wii-u-production-anytime-soo-1766548639
Luigi's Mansion and Mario 3D Land down there... You guys are maniacs!
Glad zelda is in the top 5...3 times!
@Klunk23 With Wakandan voice:
OCARINA OF TIME FORREVAH!!!!!!!
Ocarina bored me to tears. I tried but I'm a Lttp guy. Where is Ever Oasis, any EO was made perfect for the 3ds, Puzzle Dragons, Dragon Code, Alliance Alive, Captain Toad, Wario Gold , Lord of Magna, River City Rival Showdown, Hey pikmin, Yoshi wooly world, Stella Glow, Tales of the Abyss, Card Jockey, Art Academy. I could name more but theres no need for ancient n64 ports even if fanboys cant stop loving it.
@Sanangelo89 When I made that comment 4 months ago, I didn't think about how people might continually respond as the list got updated. That being said, I appreciate the passion people have for it, even if I don't agree with the games placing.
Also, gonna say this is probably the last time we see the list updated, with no substantial 3DS support planned from here on out.
While not on this list at all, Rusty's Real Deal Baseball is in my top 3.
Popularity speaks the loudest. Persona Q but not an actual Etrian Odyssey title? Shin Megami Tensei 4: Apocalypse was a huge improvement on the 4.
Warioware Gold would be in my top 10 , and Kirbys Extra Epic Yarn is a great 3DS platformer too that should be shown more love !
Dream Team + both Kirbys = happy me.
Not a bad list my top 25 3ds games would be:
1. Kirby Triple Deluxe
2.Pokemon Alpha Sapphire
3. Pokemon X
4. Yoshi's Wolly World
5. Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask
6. Detective Pikachu - Underrated game no one ever mentions
7. Mario and Luigi dream team
8. Mario 3d land
9. kirby planet robobot
10. Scribblenauts Unlimited
11. Scribblenauts Unmasked
12. Animal Crossing New Leaf
13. Donkey Kong country returns
14.Pokemon Moon / Ultra Sun
15. professor Layton vs Phoenix Wright
16. Inazuma Eleven Go - Light
17. Professor layton and the azran legacy
18. Fantasy Life
19. Yugioh Zexal Duel Carnival
20. The great ace attorney
21. Kid Icarus Uprising
22. Project X zone
23. Mario Maker for 3ds
24. Shovel Knights
25. River City - Rival Showdown
@TossedLlama wii u
Wierd selection. In a wierd order
Samus Returns for me personally is the best game on 3DS.
that was not a really good 3DS top 50 theres like a load of games missing from it.
I loved Sticker star. It felt like beautiful little diorama's, filled with secrets. I also liked the Thing-stickers, it was soooo weird.
But many people bashed it because they wanted a proper Paper mario rpg again. I too would like a proper rpg again, but know that it won't happen. Besides if it would happen, it would still have tons of toads and regular enemies. No more Rogue port (One of Nintendo's best towns, filled with secrets and crazy characters).
I just expected 3D land to be on here
Wow. Shocked that 3d land didn't crack the top 50
Should the VC games even count for the purposes of this being a best 3DS games list
No Miitopia?! What a joke
90% of the people in these comments have no idea that this is a user generated list. If you disagree with the list then vote on your favorite games and change it.
❗️My Top 5️⃣ 3DS Games:
2️⃣Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars
4️⃣Super Mario 3D Land
5️⃣New Super Mario Bros. 2
To tell the truth I skimmed through the comments, and I haven't played that many 3DS games but my favorite is Animal Crossing New Leaf. and my most wanted one is Shovel Knight.
@thenikdavies No, screw them. You're right. Pick you own list and perhaps from this decade.
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