The Best eShop Games To Download For The 3DS XL
Back when Nintendo was pushing DSiWare pretty hard they released a bunch of graphically scaled down original games under the Art Style moniker, and Pictobits is far and away the best of the bunch. Similar to Tetris, blocks fall from the top of the lower screen, but in Pictobits players use the stylus to move around the colored blocks at the bottom of the screen to complete rows and combos before the pieces land. As the colored blocks are cleared they are used to craft classic NES sprites on the top screen.
The Game Boy version of Donkey Kong wasn't anything like the versions that you have come to know and love. This release is actually a complete collection of 101 different levels that build on the four classics ones, pitting Mario against his most primal foe, DK as he tries to save Pauline. Think you're up to the challenge of taking down that giant monkey over and over again? Doubtful.
Originally released for the Game Boy, Mario's Picross is the first in the series, which has sustained right up through to the DS, with 2010's Picross 3D. Frequently compared to Sudoku, the Picross games are a balance of logic and counting, that task the player with revealing hidden images by removing blocks based on the numbers surrounding the level. There's a reason that the games have stuck around so long – they're amazing, and addictive. Even with the dulled down graphics, Mario Picross weathers the test of time by being a game that you just can't put down.
This game is part of the reason that there's even a market for portable gaming devices. Tetris, particularly the Game Boy version, is truly one of the greatest games ever released. How can you tell? The theme song is now looping in your head. Tetris-ized.
Puzzle games on a portable device go hand-in-hand, and Pushmo is a shining example of just how to make an enjoyable game in a bite sized experience. The premise is easy: push and pull rows of blocks to help you get to the top of each level. The hard part is figuring out just how the pieces fall into place. With hundreds of levels as well as sharable user generated content, Pushmo is one of those games that you could be playing for months, and still not be done with it.
Like a 3D version of Tetris, Ketzal's Corridors not only tests your shape-shifting ability, but also your reflexes. Instead of blocks falling from the sky, Ketzal's blocks are scrolling down corridors and you need to line them up as they pass through holes in the wall. The 3DS' larger top screen will come in mighty handy, helping you figure out just how and where to shift around, but that doesn't mean it's going to make it any easier.
New Super Mario Bros. 2
To coincide with the launch of the 3DS XL is Nintendo's first foray into releasing a retail game as a download, and they couldn't have picked a better game to start with. New Super Mario Bros. 2 is the follow up to the original NSMB game that was released on the DS, and the one that was released on the Wii. It's a classic 2D sidescrolling adventure where Mario has to save Princess Peach once again – but does that really matter? It's a new Super Mario Bros. game. Just go download it, you'll be happy you did.
Stopping an alien invasion is the plot of like half the games that have ever been release, but Mutant Mudds is probably the only one that has ever had its protagonist saving the world with a water gun. While watching the news on night Mutant Mudds' hero, Max, learns that mud blobs are taking over the planet, so he sets out to try and stop them. Armed with his squirt gun, and a retro art style, Mutant Mudds is one of the best games to sink your free time into on your 3DS.
Shantae: Risky's Revenge
Risky's Revenge may be another 2D platformer, but there's something special about Shantae that helps her game stand above the rest. Originally released in 2010, Risky's Revenge is still one of the highest rated games on the DS on Metacritic, and there's a good reason for that, the developers at WayForward made an amazing game that anyone can pick up, play, and fall in love with.
VVVVVV is a game about pain and suffering... for the player. After escaping dimensional interference through a teleporter on his ship Captain Viridian must search for, and reassemble his crew in a strange land. A 2D puzzle-platformer, VVVVVV has retro inspired graphics, and insanely challenging levels that will keep you wandering around, switching gravity, and jumping from screen-to-screen for days on end.
A different take on the brickbreaker genre, Trajectile gives you a limited number or rockets to fire at the blocks above you until you clear all of them out. Using the walls you can bank your shots until you land on your targets. It's a surprisingly awesome mix of geometry and destruction - the better you were with a protractor in elementary school, the better you'll be at Trajectile.