Updated November 17, 2019 by Christopher Thomas

The 10 Best Nintendo 3DS Games

video play icon
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive

This wiki has been updated 15 times since it was first published in November of 2017. The Nintendo 3DS is one of the most popular handheld gaming platforms on the market, and for good reason. The company has brought some of its most iconic titles to life on the small screen in three dimensions, and third-party developers have joined them in creating a collection of thrilling games. Even though no more games are being released, there's still a massive catalog out there. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. Skip to the best nintendo 3ds game on Amazon.

10. Pokémon Sun and Moon

9. Metroid: Samus Returns

8. Mario Kart 7

7. Animal Crossing: New Leaf

6. Super Smash Bros.

5. Bravely Default

4. Xenoblade Chronicles

3. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

2. Super Mario Land

Editor's Notes

November 13, 2019:

With all due respect to the wildly successful Nintendo Switch, the 3DS is still an excellent platform. Some titles, such as Animal Crossing: New Leaf and Pokémon Sun and Moon, may seem like kids' games, but you'd be surprised just how many adults love to play them. Somewhat similarly, Super Mario Land and Mario Kart 7 aren't exactly thrilling psychological masterpieces or complex RPGs, but the joy and nostalgia they evoke is second to none for many gamers. And fans of side-scrollers likely haven't forgotten the many hours of fun in titles like Metroid: Samus Returns.

We've also highlighted some slightly more advanced titles including Bravely Default and the Xenoblade Chronicles. Both of these are engrossing, in-depth RPGs that were exceptionally popular when first released in Japan, and if you're into the Final Fantasy series, you will absolutely enjoy either of them, although they might not be ideal for the youngest players.

Of course, pretty much everyone who's ever owned a Nintendo has heard of and probably played something related to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. It's arguably the best console game of all time (and boy, do gamers love to argue about that stuff), and the 3DS version is even improved over the venerated Nintendo 64 release. Fewer people have heard of The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, but it is every bit as high-quality, and as it's only available on this compact, portable platform, it's essentially a must-play for any 3DS owner.

Finally, the Super Smash Bros. franchise is currently as popular as ever, and this handheld version is nearly as fun as the newest one, although it is a bit simpler.


Christopher Thomas
Last updated on November 17, 2019 by Christopher Thomas

Building PCs, remodeling, and cooking since he was young, quasi-renowned trumpeter Christopher Thomas traveled the USA performing at and organizing shows from an early age. His work experiences led him to open a catering company, eventually becoming a sous chef in several fine LA restaurants. He enjoys all sorts of barely necessary gadgets, specialty computing, cutting-edge video games, and modern social policy. He has given talks on debunking pseudoscience, the Dunning-Kruger effect, culinary technique, and traveling. After two decades of product and market research, Chris has a keen sense of what people want to know and how to explain it clearly. He delights in parsing complex subjects for anyone who will listen -- because teaching is the best way to ensure that you understand things yourself.


Thanks for reading the fine print. About the Wiki: We don't accept sponsorships, free goods, samples, promotional products, or other benefits from any of the product brands featured on this page, except in cases where those brands are manufactured by the retailer to which we are linking. For more information on our rankings, please read about us, linked below. The Wiki is a participant in associate programs from Amazon, Walmart, Ebay, Target, and others, and may earn advertising fees when you use our links to these websites. These fees will not increase your purchase price, which will be the same as any direct visitor to the merchant’s website. If you believe that your product should be included in this review, you may contact us, but we cannot guarantee a response, even if you send us flowers.