Best Nintendo 3DS Games to Buy Right Now

Elina Rudkovsky


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Sadly, the legendary 3DS console is scheduled to be discontinued. But if you've purchased one recently — hold your worries! Nintendo promised to support 3DS in the near future, and there's still a caboodle of games you can get. We've selected 10 Best Nintendo 3DS games to play in 2019.


1. The Legends of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time — Dungeons & Fairies

The Legends of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time poster

After having a nightmare, Link wakes up in his cozy village cottage put somewhere in the Lost Woods. His ominous dream featured a mysterious figure dressed in black armour. And he was pursuing some lovely princess! Definitely with bad intentions...

Navi takes Link to the Great Deku Tree, which is dying. The ancient Tree tells Link that it's cursed and The One who put a curse on it is planning to take over the world. Naturally, it's Link's job to stop the curse-casting baddie.

Rescue missions. Fantastic creatures of all sorts from Gorons, Zoras, and Bongo-Bongo to the Great Fairy. Master Quest. And even time-travelling — this game has the authentic LoZ spirit with new characters and adventures. Apart from the new plot and gameplay, The Ocarina of Time also has new controls. Now you can enjoy touchscreen and motion mechanics along with revamped visuals and glasses-free 3D experience.

The Legends of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time is another epic chapter in your epic Zelda adventure.

2. Mario Kart 7 — Mustached and Furious

Mario Kart 7 poster

The engines go vroom-vroom, and the kart tires leave a flaming trace on the asphalt. It's Mario Kart 7, the racing simulator, set in the Mushroom Kingdom. All the beloved heroes, heroines and villains have made it to the tournament. You can sit behind the wheel:

  • Mario and his green-capped bro Luigi;
  • Her Highness Princess Peach;
  • Red-nosed hustler Warrio;
  • Shy Guy who hides his face behind a ski mask;
  • Heavy-weight Bowser;
  • Toad & Koopa-Troopa, etc.

Pick one of them and jump into a dizzy race around the tracks. As you compete, win and progress, you collect various trophies and unlock more secret characters: Wiggler, Queen Bee, Metal Mario, and others.

In this entry on the franchise, you get 8 cups: 4 new ones and 4 retro-cups borrowed from older games. Physics got a bit of rework: whenever you accelerate to the top speed, you feel like piloting a jet. New arena elements include underwater areas where you can find extra goodies. Coins have made it back in MK7 so hurry up to collect 10 of them to get a short, but crazy speed boost.

Race fast, be strategic and make Bowser and Warrio eat dust in Mario Kart 7!

3. Metroid: Samus Returns — Outer Space Headhunting

Metroid: Samus Returns poster

Samus Aran, the intergalactic bounty hunter, returns. And this time, she brings with her classic gameplay blended with cutting-edge visuals & physics. A Galactic Federation veteran, she will be whacking deadly Metroids as hard as she can. Both to fulfill her mercenary contracts and to sabotage evil forces that aspire to put the Metroids under their control.

Travel to planet SR 388. Exterminate the bioweapon creatures called Metroids. Learn counter-attack and stun techniques. But beware: the enemies' intelligence has dramatically increased over the years: they'll actively seek for you instead of patiently waiting to get killed. And of course, don't forget to poke walls & ceilings — the concealed hidden chambers are filled with loot.

Vintage cut-scenes, retro-futurism, destructible objects and 3DS analogue stick that allows you to shoot in every direction — the game combines what made it legendary with contemporary gimmicks. Add to that extended maps and tight combat mechanics — what else would you need to have an enthralling space saga of risk and revenge?    

Metroid: Samus Returns resurrects the best elements of the legendary Nintendo title.

4. Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon — Who You Gonna Call? Luigi!

Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon poster

For years Professor E. Gadd has been studying paranormal activities. However, something went wrong: King Boo escaped a painting and destroyed Dark Moon. That artifact kept ghosts and specters dormant. But now they've gone nuts and terrorize Evershade Valley! 

The wacky Professor calls Luigi for help. That's when your ghostbusting saga begins! Travel with Mario's sibling from one mansion to another and collect pieces of Dark Moon to repair it. Your weapon arsenal includes a bright flashlight and Poltergust 5000. The flashlight can stun the spirits, meanwhile, Poltergust sucks the air-paddling phantoms in.

Solve puzzles, hunt ghosts, and enjoy the game's playful atmosphere. Squeaky rafters, chuckling evil spirits and fearless but still nervous Luigi — all these elements create an immersive and comic atmosphere to get giggly about.

Embark on a spooky adventure in Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon. Otherwise, Luigi risks getting a heart attack if left alone.

5. Shovel Knight — The Quirky Blast From the Past

Shovel Knight poster

Shovel Knight is like pizza. It's filled with all sorts of stuffing. We have a combat system from Ninja Gaiden, quest/dialogue system from Legends of Zelda, a non-linear world from Mario 3, and boss fights borrowed from Mega Man. And on top of that, there's that charming retro-design and grotesque sense of humor. Who said knights couldn’t wield rakes, shovels and other garden tools?

Your Kingdom has been enslaved by the evil Enchantress. As a result, you've lost contact with your all-time bro the Shield Knight. So, it's up to you to restore freedom of your homeland! Before you can get to the Enchantress, you'll have to take down her 8 lieutenants — the No Quarter Order. It includes:

  • Mole Knight;
  • Propeller Knight;
  • Polar Knight;
  • Specter Knight, etc.    

Travel from one gorgeous arena to another: Lost City, Prdemoor Keep, Clockwork Tower and so on. Slay monsters — Beeto, Weezem, Super Skeleton, Lunkeroth — and collect their loot. In return, the booty you snatch can be invested in upgrading your armor and arsenal. Sadly, the only bummer is that on 3DS you won't fight Kratos from God of War: he's available on the PS version only.

Help Shovel Knight defeat his idiot enemies, enjoy challenging gameplay and clever references!

6. Super Smash Bros. 3D — Brutality...

Super Smash Bros. 3D

If Mortal Kombat invaded the Mushroom Kingdom then it'd look like Super Smash Bros. Here you have an insane roster of characters from various games:

  • Kirby;
  • Mario & Luigi;
  • Jigglypuff, Pikachu & Charizard;
  • Donkey Kong & Bowser;
  • Little Mac & Bayonetta;
  • Dr. Mario in his iconic lab coat.

And even the dog from the legendary 1984's Duck Hunt can join the scuffle!

Pick a character and enjoy the frantic melee-combat at 60 fps. Characters will do round-about kicks, uppercuts, somersaults and other moves that will make you a bit dizzy. There's a wide repertoire of battle arenas — from a boxing ring to Yaggdrasil's Altar. And each one of them conveys a unique vibe with living and moving decorations. 

As you successfully smash your opponents, you'll be able to unlock more characters. Wii Fit Trainer is one of them: she transforms from a Yoga instructor into a Kung-fu expert ready to bring hell to anyone (especially Kirby). Besides, each character can be customized so you can sculpt your unique fighting style.

Super Smash Bros. 3D is a perfect way to relax with upbeat combat tempo.

7. Animal Crossing: New Leaf — Welcome Back, Mayor!

Animal Crossing: New Leaf poster

As you're about to move to a new village, you're mistaken by the locals for their mayor. So, instead of being just a regular Joe growing tomatoes in his garden, you get to control the entire little town! Decorate the village with lanterns, Zen bells, benches, and fountains. Receive daily assignments from the residents (Public Works) to make your ratings skyrocket.

Additionally, you can go swimming or fishing. Sell and purchase things at the shops. Complete tasks and quests to earn Bells — the local currency. The more Bells you have, the more design and furniture choices you get when decorating your own house.

There's also a multiplayer, in which you can visit your friends' villages. Leave a gift or mess up one of their gardens — it solely depends on your current mood. And in the Dream Suite, you can upload the dream version of your village for others to inspect. In the Dream mode, you can go completely bananas and destroy everything you see. But it won't affect your pal's real village, because it's just a dream.

For those who prefer competition and socializing, there's Resort Island. Led by the former mayor Tortimer, it offers an array of mini-games for battling real players from every part of the world. Besides, on the Island, you can restock your supply of beetles or fruit to be sold later.

Build a town of your dream with Animal Crossing: New Leaf!

8. Pokémon: Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon — I Choose You!

Pokémon: Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon poster

Lille, a modest beginner at Pokémon-training, starts her career on the Alola Island. She visits every corner of that tropical area to learn more about Pokemons, partake in the Totem Pokémon challenges and sabotage the evil Skull Team's plans.

Over the course of her adventures, Lillie will discover a wormhole that works as portals to parallel dimensions. Her findings will lead her to encountering a legendary Pokémon Necrozma. And when something as powerful and diabolic as Necrozma invades Alola, you know it means nothing good...

Join Lillie and her friends/rivals Hau and Gladion. Catch rare and legendary Pokémons. Meet Team Rainbow Rocket — the doppelgangers of real Team Rocket. Battle Necrozma and become the best trainer around!

Help Lillie in her interdimensional adventures in Pokémon: Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon!

True Friends Never Leave You

Despite the fact that 3DS console won't be made anymore, it's still supported by Nintendo. And as you can see, there's a whole treasury of worthy games to enjoy. What's your personal N1 favorite title for 3DS? Let us know, so we could complete our list next time!