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The 50 Best Nintendo 3DS Games Ranked

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The Best Nintendo 3DS Games of All Time

What are the best Nintendo 3DS games?

An eighth-generation console and primary competitor to the PS Vita, the Nintendo 3DS is one of the most popular handhelds in the world.

One of its biggest features is its ability to display stereoscopic 3D images without the use of glasses, which really helped games come to life.

Due to its advancements and popularity, numerous great games have come to this platform, and today we’re rounding them all up.


The 50 Best Nintendo 3DS Games Ranked

While there are many amazing games on the 3DS, we’ve created this list based on the individual ratings of each game by fans and critics.

This has allowed us to rank the most popular games in an unbiased way, so that you can find out which ones are the greatest.

There are a lot of releases to cover, so let’s dive into our list of the 50 best Nintendo 3DS games:


50. Shantae And The Pirate’s Curse

Shantae And The Pirate’s Curse is a platformer that came to the Nintendo 3DS in 2014, and it follows the titular half-genie as she tries to save sequin land.

As Shantae, players can attack enemies using a variety of pirate items, including a pistol and scimitar.

Unlike previous titles, this game is spread out across several islands, which can be traveled to using Risky Boots’ ship.

A commercial success, this game was incredibly popular and has even since been ported to the PS5 and Nintendo Switch.


49. Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse

This 2016 RPG is the sequel to Shin Megami Tensei IV, and it is set in a post-apocalyptic alternate universe.

The story revolves around demon hunter Nanashi, who has been resurrected by the demon Dagda in exchange for becoming a “godslayer.”

Players navigate through the game using a turn-based combat system to take out enemies and progress through levels.

There are also multiple endings that can be achieved that help give this game a lot of replayability.

It’s kind of like playing through one of the best action anime series of all time, which immediately made this game a huge hit with fans.


48. Stella Glow

Stella Glow is a turn-based RPG that was released in 2016, and it follows the story of a man who teams up with four witches to save his town.

Throughout the game, there is free time and battle time, in which players can perform certain actions.

During free time, players can build relationships, explore, and do side quests, while in battle time, they can progress the story.

There are two main endings to Stella Glow, plus a special epilogue that changes depending on which character the player has the highest affinity with.


47. Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call

Released in 2014, this is the second game in the Final Fantasy rhythm series, and it received high praise from fans.

In this game, players use characters from across the Final Fantasy series to perform songs and progress the game.

There are three different gameplay modes: field stages, battle songs, and event stages, and each presents a unique challenge.

Sales of this game were so strong that there were even supply problems keeping up the demand, which goes to show how popular it was upon release.


46. Rune Factory 4

Rune Factory 4 was released in 2013 for the 3DS, and it remains one of the console’s best games.

This game is all about exploration, farming, and crafting, though it also has a solid and engaging story.

The plot centers around the player character becoming a royal in the village of Selphia, where you then must work to gain villagers’ trust and attract tourists.

There are a lot of slice-of-life mechanics that make it similar to some of the best real-life simulation games, like Animal Crossing or Stardew Valley.

The popularity of this game has even led to the release of Rune Factory 4 Special for the PS4, PC, and Xbox Series X/S.


45. Super Mario 3D Land

This platformer is unique from other games in the Mario series as it combines elements from both the modern 3D Mario games and the classic 2D side-scrollers.

It also introduces players to new mechanics but still centers around the titular plumber attempting to rescue Princess Peach from Bowser.

The seventh best-selling game for the Nintendo 3DS, Super Mario 3D Land, has sold 12 million copies around the world and was the first to sell over 5 million.

Needless to say, this is easily one of the best Nintendo 3DS games and a must-play for any Mario fan.


44. WarioWare Gold

WarioWare Gold is a compilation of minigames and serves as the ninth installment of the WarioWare series.

Released in 2018, this game follows Wario, who has put together a gaming tournament with a seemingly large cash prize, though he ultimately means to keep it all for himself.

Players are tasked with completing several “microgames” in order to beat the main story mode, after which additional challenges and modes are unlocked.

Not only are the minigames inventive and engaging, but none of them are overall repetitive, which makes MarioWare addicting to play.


43. Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate

Released for the Wii U and 3DS in 2013, Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate is an expanded version of Monster Hunter Tri.

This game revolves around the player hunting and killing various monsters as quests. However, to defeat stronger monsters, better gear is needed.

There is a big focus on material gathering and crafting in this game, as without it, taking on the toughest beasts is nearly impossible.

Moreover, Ultimate reintroduces the G Rank, which features even harder monsters and better weapons and armor.

While you definitely have to dedicate a good amount of time to building up your character, that is part of what makes this game so great.


42. Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward

The second installment in the Zero Escape franchise, Virtue’s Last Reward, follows Sigma, who is forced to play the Nonary game with eight other participants.

Gameplay includes two main sections, escape and novel; the first tasks players with completing puzzles, and the second provides the narrative as a visual novel.

Players can also use the flowchart mechanic to go back to completed sections and choose different outcomes that will cause the story to progress differently.

There are 24 different endings that can be achieved, giving this game a ton of replayability.


41. Miitopia

Released in 2017, Miitopia revolves around customizable Mii characters who have to stop the Dark Lord from stealing the faces of the city’s residents.

While players use turn-based combat mechanics to take on foes, there are also many life simulation elements that critics have praised.

For instance, the relationship with other Miis matters a lot, and if two characters don’t get along, it can make cooperating in combat more difficult.

This game is also compatible with Tomodachi Life, and players can import their characters and traits from that game into this one.

Miitopia proved to be so popular that it has even been remastered for the Nintendo Switch so that players can experience it with updated graphics.


40. Rhythm Heaven Megamix

This rhythm game, released in 2016, is the fourth in the Rhythm Heaven series, and it is a compilation of stages from the previous titles.

There are over 100 rhythm games in Megamix, including 70 taken from previous games and 30 brand-new ones.

Players can also take on story mode, where they can help Tibby reach his home in Heaven World by completing various stages.

Despite not having any of the hardest video game levels of all time, Megamix is filled with addictive gameplay that can keep anyone occupied for hours.


39. Fantasy Life

Released in 2014, this RPG life simulation game is set in the fantasy world of Reveria, and it tasks the player with investigating strange occurrences surrounding meteorites.

In this game, players can choose from 12 different life classes, which each come with unique duties.

There are also several goals that can be completed, such as buying and decorating a house that will unlock additional abilities.

It’s hard to run out of things to do in Fantasy Life, and you’ll want to keep playing until you have completed absolutely everything.


38. Bravely Second: End Layer

A sequel to Bravely Default, this turn-based RPG was released for the Nintendo 3DS in 2016.

While it retains the same combat system as its predecessor, it also adds new mechanics like the chain-battle feature, which allows players to receive bigger rewards.

Every character also has access to 30 different jobs and revamped side quests that usually revolve around ethical dilemmas.

Although the general storyline isn’t as well-rounded as the first game’s, the sleek combat and intuitive gameplay make it one of the best Nintendo 3DS games.

It is definitely worth checking out if you’re a fan of turn-based JRPGs, and it has done well to set itself apart from other games in the genre.


37. Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon

This roguelike Pokémon game was released in 2015, and it follows the player character after they have been turned into a Pokémon.

Like many games in the series, Super Mystery Dungeon requires players to explore the world and battle enemies as they try to stop a major world crisis.

Players take on the role of one of 20 starter Pokémon and are later joined by a partner, randomly chosen from the remaining 19.

What really makes this game stand out are its procedurally generated dungeons that are filled with unique traps and enemies.

Even if you’ve never played any other game in the complete Pokémon series, Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon is incredibly entertaining!


36. Mario & Luigi: Dream Team

This RPG is the fourth installment in the Mario & Luigi series, and it follows the brothers after they’ve been invited to Pi’illo Island for a vacation.

Unfortunately for them, their island getaway ends up turning into a quest to stop retrieving a magical artifact before Bowser can.

Played from a top-down perspective, players control Mario and Luigi simultaneously, using them in tandem to solve puzzles and win battles.

As of 2020, Dream Team has sold 2.62 million copies, making it one of the best-selling games on the Nintendo 3DS.


35. Resident Evil Revelations

Revelations is one of the best Resident Evil games, and it was released in 2012 as a survival horror game for the 3DS.

Set after the events of Resident Evil 4, this game follows Jill Valentine and Chris Redfield as they try to stop a virus from being released into the ocean.

In single-player mode, players must complete puzzles and defeat enemies in order to make progress, while in multiplayer, players must fight through altered single-player maps.

This game has a large emphasis on survival, exploration, and evasion, as opposed to fast-paced combat, and movement speed, ammo, and health have all been limited.

Along with being one of the best Nintendo 3DS games, it is also one of the most challenging in the Resident Evil series.


34. Persona Q: Shadow Of The Labyrinth

A crossover between Persona 3 and 4, Shadow of the Labyrinth, sees characters from both games sent to a replica of Yasogami High School in an alternate world.

These groups of characters must then unite in order to explore the school’s four labyrinths to uncover the treasures and secrets within.

The general gameplay is that of a first-person dungeon crawler, and combat uses the character’s unique “persona” abilities.

The Persona series has long been hailed as one of the best role-playing games, with Persona 5 even winning Best RPG at the Game Awards in 2017.

Suffice it to say, this installment lives up to the hype and is definitely a must-play for fans of the franchise.


33. Kirby: Triple Deluxe

Kirby has been entertaining fans since his first adventure on the Game Boy in 1992, and Triple Delux marks the 10th game in his franchise.

This game follows Kirby as he is lifted into the sky on a Dreamstalk and must fight his way through multiple regions to rescue King Dedede.

As a 2.5D platformer, this game challenges players to get through various levels while solving puzzles and taking out enemies.

New copy abilities have also been added, one of which allows Kirby to impale enemies on a horn, carry them, or slam them down.

When the main story is completed, an extra mode is unlocked that features King Dedede as a playable character.


32. Fire Emblem Fates

Fire Emblem Fates is a tactical RPG that was released in 2016 as the fourteenth game in the Fire Emblem series.

Unlike other games in the franchise, Fates was released in three versions: Birthright, Conquest, and Revelation, which change the circumstances of the main character.

Gameplay consists of the tactical movement of units across a battlefield grid, and some scenarios have their own unique elements.

While Birthright is seen as a good starting point for new players, Revelation acts as a middle ground, and Conquest is for players who want a challenge.


31. Shin Megami Tensei IV

Shin Megami Tensei has no direct story to previous games in the series, making it a good starting point for new players.

The story focuses on a samurai, Flynn, who is sent to capture a mysterious Black Samurai who is transforming people into demons.

Combat is executed using turn-based mechanics, and players must exploit enemy weaknesses to gain turns, though turns can also be lost.

As with other RPGs, the goal is to become stronger by completing quests and advancing stats so that tougher enemies can be defeated.

This game was incredibly well-received when it first debuted in 2013, selling nearly 1 million copies by 2015.


30. Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire

Remakes of the 2002 Game Boy Advance games Ruby and Sapphire, this installment in the Pokémon franchise also includes elements from Emerald.

Despite being remakes of third-generation games, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire contain changes made in later generations, such as type splits and unlimited TM usage.

The story and setting remain largely the same as the original games, though there is a new side quest called the Delta Episode.

During this quest, players must work with a new character, Zinnia, to help stop a meteor from crashing into the planet.

This mission is cool because it requires catching the Legendary Pokémon Rayquzaza, which is one of the best Dragon Pokémon in the entire franchise.


29. Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story + Bowser Jr.’s Journey

This installment in the Mario & Luigi RPG series is a remake of the 2009 Nintendo DS game Bowser’s Inside Story, and it comes with a bonus Bowser Jr. Adventure.

Bowser’s Inside Story features updated graphics, controls, and soundtrack, though the story remains similar aside from a few minor changes.

As for Bowser Jr.’s Journey, this game takes the young Koopa on an adventure to cure the blorb after it starts causing minions to inflate and become immobile.

In terms of gameplay, this side story is similar to Minion Quest: The Search for Bowser in that it involves two armies fighting each other in waves.

Proving to be one of the best Nintendo 3DS games, this remake is a great combination that can easily keep players engaged for hours.


28. Bravely Default

This RPG follows a party of four characters who must navigate through towns, dungeons, and unique environments in the world of Luxendarc.

While the world is displayed on the top screen, party stats and item menus can be easily seen on the bottom screen while playing.

The story revolves around the group trying to reclaim four crystals from the darkness, though a greater evil appears along the way.

Outside of the main campaign, there is also the ability to reconstruct the village of Norende, which friends on StreetPass can help with.

Bravely Default is a classic RPG, and it is filled with hours of content, including unique endings that depend on choices that the player makes.


27. SteamWorld Heist

A 2D turn-based tactical shooter, SteamWorld Heist was released in 2015 and quickly became one of the best Nintendo 3DS games.

This game follows the story of Piper Faraday, a smuggler and pirate, who recruits a team of robots for an out-of-this-world space adventure.

The objective of the game is for players to board other ships to loot and shoot their way to unique rewards.

Because a majority of levels are procedurally generated, nothing ever ends up feeling repetitive, and there are over 100 different weapons to collect for variety.

Best of all, once the main game is complete, a New Game+ mode is unlocked, which allows players to start over with all their best gear!


26. Star Fox 64 3D

Star Fox 64 3D is a remake of one of the best N64 games of all time, and it came to the 3DS in 2011.

Fans praised the updated gameplay, visuals, and graphics, as well as its faithfulness to the original game.

While some new features were added, the story remains the game, centering around Star Fox, who is hired to investigate strange activity on the planet Venom.

One of the biggest upgrades this version has is the new multiplayer “battle mode,” which allows 4 local players to fight to face CPU opponents together.

During these multiplayer matches, each player’s face is also displayed on the opponents’ screens as a kind of live reaction feed.


25. Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser’s Minions

A remake of the Game Boy Advance game Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, this game also comes with the side story, Bowser’s Minions.

Unlike other games in the series, this game is only playable in 2D, though the graphics, controls, and music have been completely updated.

Like Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story + Bowser Jr.’s Journey, the main story remains the same, but with some quality of life improvements.

In Bowser’s Minions, players need to help the minions take on enemies and rescue the King Koopa himself.

Combat revolves around two armies automatically fighting each other, with the player choosing when to add more power, more support, or special actions.


24. Pokémon X & Y

The first installment in the sixth generation of Pokémon, this game follows the story of a young trainer in the Kalos region.

While the main goal of the game is to challenge the Pokémon League Champion, players also have to thwart Team Flare, a criminal organization.

What makes these games really exceptional is that they introduced 72 new Pokémon, including fairy-types, which previously hadn’t existed.

Mega Evolutions were also added, which allow players to further evolve many species of Pokémon, allowing them to be more powerful.

As of 2022, Pokémon X & Y have sold a combined 16.65 million copies, making it the best-selling Nintendo 3DS game behind Mario Kart 7.


23. Monster Hunter Generations

Considered a spin-off title, Monster Hunter Generations was released for the 3DS in 2016, and it comes with both solo and multiplayer game modes.

Like other games in the series, Generations tasks players with hunting various dangerous creatures and growing more powerful to take on even tougher monsters.

However, despite being a spin-off, this game introduces some major new additions, such as new combat styles, new special attacks, and the ability to play as Felynes.

Having sold 8 million units as of 2020, this game has since come to the Nintendo Switch as Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate.


22. Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D

Donkey Kong is a staple in some of the best retro games of all time, and this game brought the great ape to the Nintendo 3DS.

The first installment of Donkey Kong Country not to involve the original developers, Rare, this game focuses on evil tiki-beings that are unleashed on Donkey Kong Island.

As a side-scrolling platformer, players have to control DK through a series of classic style levels while also collecting things like bananas and golden Kong letters.

In multiplayer mode, one player can take control of Diddy Kong to help make level progression a little bit easier.


21. Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS

This crossover fighting game was highly anticipated as one of the best Nintendo 3DS games, and it certainly didn’t disappoint.

Like others in the series, this non-traditional fighting game is all about using characters’ special attacks to try and knock opponents out of the arena.

While many characters from classic games make an appearance, players can also use custom Miis as playable fighters.

After being released in 2014, over nine million copies of this game were sold by 2022, making it one of the most successful games in the series.


20. Picross 3D: Round 2

While this game was only released as a digital download, Picross 3D: Round 2 proved to be one of the best puzzle games on the 3DS.

Each 3D puzzle has three difficulty levels, and to win, players must analyze numbers throughout the puzzle and break or paint specific blocks to reveal a 3D model.

In this sequel, over 370 new puzzles were added, as well as different color variations for the remaining blocks.

It may not be filled with action gameplay, but when it comes to passing time, Picross 3D: Round 2 offered a real addictive challenge.


19. Xenoblade Chronicles 3D

This action RPG was released in 2015 as a port of the popular Wii game Xenoblade Chronicles, and the story revolves around a war between the Homs and the Mechon machine race.

Players take control of Shulk, who, after an attack on his village, sets out on a quest for revenge with his best friend Reyn.

The game itself has an open-world design, though a new graphics engine was needed for framerate stability on the 3Ds.

When asked about the development of Xenoblade Chronicles 3D, the devs stated that they needed to take many “technical risks” while creating the game.

Fortunately, the risks paid off, and this quickly became one of the best Nintendo 3DS games ever made.


18. Ever Oasis

Ever Oasis was released for the 3DS in 2016, and it follows the story of a young seedling who must work with a water spirit to build the world’s last oasis.

This game is primarily an action RPG, but it also features elements of dungeon crawling and town management.

The main goal is to build a prospering oasis by completing missions found in caves and dungeons throughout the desert.

While Ever Oasis definitely isn’t lacking action, it is also a pretty chill game that is perfect for killing time when you don’t want intense gameplay.


17. Mario Kart 7

This kart racing game was such a success it became the best-selling game on the Nintendo 3DS, with 19 million copies sold worldwide.

Mario Kart 7 allows up to eight local or online players to race against each other while playing as one of seventeen classic Mario Characters.

While racing, players can use power-up items to either assist themselves or hinder their opponents.

However, this game also made some new additions, such as hang-gliding karts, underwater driving, and first-person driving.

Even now, this remains one of the best multiplayer games of all time, as well as one of the best on the Nintendo 3DS.


16. Metroid: Samus Returns

Another classic game that came to the 3DS, Metroid: Samus Returns, is a remake of the 1991 Game Boy game Metroid II: Return of Samus.

While the story remains the same as the original, the graphics, controls, and user interface have all been completely updated.

New gameplay mechanics have also been added, including melee counterattacks and the ability to aim freely from any angle.

Thanks to all of these updates, this installment in the Metroid series became incredibly popular, even topping the charts on the eShop as recently as 2021.


15. Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia

This tactical RPG is the fifteenth game in the Fire Emblem series, and it follows dual protagonists Celica and Alm as they try to end a civil war.

While Alm wants to end the war via battle, Celica aims to end it by finding a peaceful solution, and the ultimate outcome falls on the players.

Shadows of Valentia maintains many of the gameplay mechanics that the Fire Emblem series is known for but combines this with dungeon crawling.

However, what really sets this game apart is its dramatic story, which has some of the best writing in the entire Fire Emblem franchise.


14. Kid Icarus: Uprising

The third installment in the Kid Icarus series, Uprising, marks the first worldwide release of a Kid Icarus game since 1986.

This shooter follows an angel named Pit, a servant of the Goddess of Light, who must defeat Medusa and Handes from destroying humanity.

Gameplay takes the form of airborne rail shooter segments, and there are also numerous multiplayer modes that can support up to six players.

While the controls make Uprising seem very simple, its fast-paced action can be quite challenging, keeping players entertained for hours.


13. Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King

Journey of the Cursed King is the eighth game in the Dragon Quest series and the first without the Dragon Warrior title to be released in English.

Following the Hero, a silent protagonist, players can explore towns and the wider world with the goal of defeating Dhoulmagus, who has cursed the kingdom.

Battles occur randomly and are completely turn-based, but players also have the option of skipping turns to make their next attacks stronger.

While it was originally released for the PS2 in 2005, it came to the 3DS in 2016, earning several award nominations, including Best Portable Game at the Game of the Year Awards.


12. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy

This compilation includes remasters of the first three games in the Ace Attorney series; Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, Justice for All, and Trials and Tribulations.

As a visual novel series, these games allow players to act as different defense attorneys and take on cases for various clients.

It is up to the players to find the truth by cross-examining witnesses and discovering inconsistencies between facts and testimony.

Credited with popularizing visual novel games in the west, the Ace Attorney Trilogy is a must-play for anyone who wants an interesting game with a unique challenge.


11. Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate

The fourth game in the Monster Hunter series and the second released on the 3DS, this action RPG is filled with challenges.

Like other games in the series, the goal is to undertake quests to take out various dangerous monsters, which will provide materials to help characters become stronger.

As players become stronger, they can start taking on more difficult foes, eventually leading to the Apex Seregios.

In this installment, a new Guild Quest system has also been added, featuring new missions and randomly generated equipment that can be traded with other players.


10. Animal Crossing: New Leaf

One of the funniest games to play with friends online, this social simulation game gives players control of the human mayor of a town of anthropomorphic animals.

A very chill game, New Leaf allows players to do various activities like fishing and befriending villagers.

As players gain the trust of the villagers, they can start various projects to make the town a better place to live.

It’s a relatively simple game, but one that is definitely addictive, and it’s easy to become wholly invested in the welfare of your digital town.


9. Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon

A sequel to the original Luigi’s mansion, one of the best GameCube games of all time, Dark Moon is the third game in the Mario franchise to have Luigi as the main protagonist.

In this game, players control Luigi as he investigates mansions in Evershade Valley and captures ghosts using a special vacuum.

However, the main goal is to collect pieces of the Dark Moon and recapture the primary antagonist, King Boo.

While players can go through the story in single-player mode, there is also an online multiplayer where up to four players can take on the story together.


8. Pokémon Sun & Moon

The first installment in the seventh generation of the Pokémon series, Sun and Moon, were released in 2016 to commemorate the franchise’s 20th anniversary.

This game has an increased emphasis on interactions with Pokémon, and it is centered entirely on the Alola region.

Here, players are tasked with completing challenges and thwarting the schemes of Team Skill and the Aether Foundation.

Sun and Moon also introduced 81 new Pokémon species and added new features, including Alolan forms.


7. The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D

This Zelda game is often considered one of the best ever created, and for the 3DS, it was enhanced and remastered.

The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask is filled with fast-paced gameplay and tons of new locations to explore.

As Link, players must stop Termina from being destroyed by using abilities obtained from different masks.

In the remake, new features such as 3D graphics, increased framerate, and gyroscopic aiming have been added, making this classic even more immersive.


6. Shovel Knight

Inspired by the gameplay of classic platformer games, Shovel Knight was released for the Nintendo 3DS in 2014.

Using an 8-bit graphics style, this game gives players control of the titular knight as he fights against the Order of No Quarter and collects treasure.

While Shovel Knight’s shovel serves as a weapon, it can also be used to dig up items to bounce on enemies like a pogo stick.

There is even a New Game+ mode which increases the difficulty of levels and removes many checkpoints, though players will keep all of their acquired upgrades.


5. Kirby: Planet Robobot

This 2016 platformer is the eleventh main installment in the Kirby franchise and the spiritual sequel of Triple Deluxe.

In this game, players follow Kirby as he tries to defend Planet Popstar from an alien corporation seeking to steal its natural resources.

Gameplay consists of numerous platform levels, which Kirby must make his way through while inhaling enemies to defeat them.

Hidden in each level are also Code Cubes, which need to be collected to progress and unlock special bonus levels and collectables.


4. Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask

This puzzle adventure game is the fifth in the Professor Layton series and a prequel to the previous trilogy.

With sections split into chapters, players must explore the map, speak with NPCs, and solve any mysteries they run into.

There are 150 puzzles in the main game, but additional ones can be downloaded from the Nintendo Network.

If you’re someone who likes passing the time with a chill puzzle game, Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask is one of the best.


3. Legend Of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

A spiritual successor to the SNES game A Link to the Past, this Zelda game is one of the best Nintendo 3DS games ever released.

In Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, players control Link, who must restore peace to Hyrule after Princess Zelda is kidnapped.

This game also gives Link the ability to merge onto walls as a 2D painting in order to reach areas that would otherwise be off-limits.

However, puzzle-solving and clearing dungeons remain a fundamental part of this game, as it has been for the entire series.


2. Fire Emblem: Awakening

This tactical RPG is the thirteenth installment of the Fire Emblem series, and it was the first to be developed for the Nintendo 3DS.

Like previous games, Awakening focuses on turn-based tactical combat across a grid-based battlefield, where players must defeat enemy units.

However, players can also build relationships with characters that can help improve their abilities in combat, and there is even a mode to turn off permadeath,

Considered to be one of the greatest games ever created and one of the best Nintendo 3DS games, Fire Emblem: Awakening is an absolute must-play.


1. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D

Topping our list of the best Nintendo 3DS games is, of course, Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, an absolute masterpiece of a game.

A remaster of the 1998 game, everything has been updated for the 3DS to include improved visuals, stereoscopic 3D effects, and new in-game features such as Visions.

Following its release in 2011, Ocarina of Time 3D sold 6.4 million units as of 2021, making it one of the highest-selling games on the console.

Along with being one of the best Zelda Games of All Time, this is, by far, a game you can’t afford to miss on the 3DS.



We hope you enjoyed our list of the 50 best Nintendo 3DS games and maybe found some new titles to try out for yourself!

The Nintendo 3DS is a brilliant console, and while Nintendo just recently discontinued it, it remains incredibly popular with players.

If you don’t have a 3DS for yourself, the good news is that many of these great games have also been made available on the Switch, so you don’t have to worry about missing them!

Here’s a quick recap of the 50 best Nintendo 3DS games:

  1. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D
  2. Fire Emblem: Awakening
  3. Legend Of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
  4. Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask
  5. Kirby: Planet Robobot
  6. Shovel Knight
  7. The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D
  8. Pokémon Sun & Moon
  9. Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon
  10. Animal Crossing: New Leaf
  11. Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate
  12. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy
  13. Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King
  14. Kid Icarus: Uprising
  15. Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia
  16. Metroid: Samus Returns
  17. Mario Kart 7
  18. Ever Oasis
  19. Xenoblade Chronicles 3D
  20. Picross 3D: Round 2
  21. Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS
  22. Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D
  23. Monster Hunter Generations
  24. Pokémon X & Y
  25. Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser’s Minions
  26. Star Fox 64 3D
  27. SteamWorld Heist
  28. Bravely Default
  29. Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story + Bowser Jr.’s Journey
  30. Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire
  31. Shin Megami Tensei IV
  32. Fire Emblem Fates
  33. Kirby: Triple Deluxe
  34. Persona Q: Shadow Of The Labyrinth
  35. Resident Evil Revelations
  36. Mario & Luigi: Dream Team
  37. Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon
  38. Bravely Second: End Layer
  39. Fantasy Life
  40. Rhythm Heaven Megamix
  41. Miitopia
  42. Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward
  43. Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate
  44. WarioWare Gold
  45. Super Mario 3D Land
  46. Rune Factory 4
  47. Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call
  48. Stella Glow
  49. Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse
  50. Shantae And The Pirate’s Curse

What’s your favorite Nintendo 3DS game? Leave a comment below.

Shawna Schofield is a professional freelance writer and part-time YouTuber. When not writing or recording she spends her time playing Fallout, Elder Scrolls, and Dragon Age.

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