"Take a look inside."
- Positive Metacritic Reviews
- Neutral Metacritic Reviews
- Negative Metacritic Reviews
- No Reviews Listed
- 3DS Exclusive
Upcoming Games Edit
For upcoming games, click here.
|Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Legacy+||Flight / Combat||Not related to the console game Ace Combat: Assault Horizon, this is actually a port of Ace Combat 2, and an excellent title. If you hated the most recent Ace Combat, then this is right up your alley. The "+" re-release adds some new features, including support for the new buttons, facial camera tracking for the new 3DS, as well as some Nintendo themed aircraft and amiibo support.|
|Animal Crossing: New Leaf||Life Simulator/Comfy||The newest entry in the Animal Crossing series. You've probably already seen people creaming their pants over this game and such. Regardless, it's a pretty good improvement in which you are the mayor of your town and can develop and help out your community. Next to your new banana-dog assistant, Isabelle. New shops exist such as Re-Tail, where you can buy and sell items at a kind-of flea market. Make sure you pay off your house bill and get all your permits in line in the first day, because it's basically essential for stuff such as Streetpass. You can also take in-game screenshots by holding L+R in game so you can show everyone on Twitter how you caught a fucking fish. If you like Animal Crossing, get this shit.|
Remember Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light on the DS? This is a spiritual successor to it that basically fixes a lot its issues, and instead of being based off FF3, it's based off of FF5 and FFT, taking the best parts of both and mashing them together for a kickass job system. Combat uses a "Brave Point" stocking system. "Defaulting" gives you a BP, which enables you to defend for that turn, while "Bravely" uses up a BP, which lets you use an extra ability that turn for each BP you spent. This system adds some strategy to battles and makes fights more interesting, especially Bosses. One of the best RPGs on the system and worth checking out for sure. The method to unlocking the "true ending" is absolute bullshit though.
Will eventually get a sequel called "Bravely Second".
|Cave Story 3D||Platformer||The popular PC game Cave Story now upgraded with 3D graphics. Extras include a Prinny hat that's just for show, rearranged music, and three new areas about a minute long each. A tad easier than the original version since you can get double the amount of health, though the original version is also available here too.
Recommended for those who prefer physical media, as this is the only physical version of the game, and is quite difficult to come by.
|Code of Princess||Beat 'em up||2.5D beat em up with sticky combo-based combat and ridiculous character designs. Designed by the same guy(s) who created Guardian Heroes. Play through the story to unlock over 50 characters (including grunts and monsters) to play as outside of story mode. Co-op and versus modes included. Frame-rate slows the game down a bit in combat and even more so with the 3D slider on. Still with the game you get an Art-book and an OST.|
|CRUSH3D||Platformer/Puzzle||Cute-sified remix of the twisted and sinister PSP original. A puzzler that blends platforming 2D and 3D nigh-seemlessly. Each stage lets you "crush" and "uncrush" the world at 4 90-degree x-axis parts to it and 2 90-degree y-axis parts to it, allowing for birds-eye overhead, 2d sidescrolling, and 3D freeroam sections. Stages have you collect mental-marbles and reach a goal, but there's also enemies to dispose of and obstacles to utilize and avoid. Everything crushes simultaneously, so always think a step ahead to avoid screwing yourself over. GameStop-exclusive in US, but goes for a spectacularly cheap $20.|
|Dead or Alive: Dimensions||3D Fighter||An excellent entry into the Dead or Alive series. Includes a "chronicle mode" that essentially summarizes the giant cluster fuck that is the DOA saga. Gameplay is based on DOA4 with some elements from DOA3 (like the simplified '3-point-hold' system). Features a great roster of 26 playable characters. It's a surprisingly fun and balanced entry in this fighter series, which may also prove "titillating" for newcomers as well. Online can be fun too, as long as you avoid Japan or you WILL get your ass kicked provided that you can find someone online. Frame rate slows down with 3DS slider on. Had some free DLC, but TK decided to stop hosting it anywhere but Japan.|
|Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D||2D Platformer||The sequel that lived up to the original great sequel now gets a handheld 3D port. The game looks better on Wii, but still decent on 3DS and now features a fuck-easy casual mode. The only reason you need to buy this is that you haven't gotten it on the console yet, but even then, this game might just be worth it.|
Also looks a bit less detailed (DK's texture is much more simple) and runs at 30fps instead of the Wii versions 60fps, which might detract if you've played it on Wii. Recommended only if you haven't already gotten the Wii version (unless the portability and 8 new levels are a selling point to you).
Also if you suck at waggle-rolling.
|Etrian Mystery Dungeon||RPG/Dungeon Crawler||A crossover game between Atlus' Etrian Odyssey series and Spike Chunsoft's Mystery Dungeon series. Uses the same class system from Etrian Odyssey with the all the dungeon crawling goodness taken from the Mystery Dungeon games.
Not available in Yurop.
|Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan||RPG/Dungeon Crawler||Like older entries, but now with animated 3D graphics and a ballin' symphonic soundtrack (no FM for you). The 2nd easiest game of the series with a new casual mode, but don't expect to breeze through it without some effort. Like 3, it drops the last batch of classes for some new ones AGAIN. Has some nice balance though, and the skill tree systems have been further improved. And through certain items, you can use the skills of other classes.|
One really cool addition in QR codes. You can scan codes to gain extra items and also interact with other players' parties.
The demo is worth a shot for those on the fence since you can try out these new features AND transfer save data to the full game. EU pals be warned, the EO4 demo has less than 10 uses, so power off cautiously!
|Etrian Odyssey Untold: The Millenium Girl||RPG/Dungeon Crawler||Remix of EO1 built on the EO4 engine. While it retains the Classic make-your-own-crew story, it also has a new character-centric Story as well. If you beat it, you unlock 2 story-specific classes for use in classic. One benefit to the revamping of classic, is that classes and guild options have been modified and rebalanced to be less sucky and/or broken.|
In both, there is also a new system to "obtain" the skills of other classes into a unit/character, giving you further versatility. Like 4, it also has some nifty QR stuff (anyone else care to expand on this? - ED).
Sadly, the demo only covers story mode.
Some last notes: 1) You can also change music to the DS's classic FM tunes. 2) This is potentially the easiest EO so far, thanks to Story Mode and Picnic difficulty, so it's a good starter for those interested in the series. However if you play Story Mode on Expert Difficulty, it's potentially the hardest EO yet, thanks to the additional new bosses in the Gladsheim Ruins (in addition to the original stratum bosses from the core game). Do not believe the bullshit lies about Story Mode being "easy". If anyone plays Story Mode on Expert they will shut the fuck up about that.
|Fantasy Life||RPG||An RPG in which you can choose one of twelve "Life Classes", various jobs such as Alchemist, Cook, Carpenter, Hunter, Woodcutter, etc. The main story involves investigating mysterious meteorites that spread dark energy to creatures throughout the land, and fighting those monsters. Very simple and cute art style, as expected from Level 5. Sadly, the gameplay is pretty shallow.|
|Fire Emblem Awakening||SRPG||The newest and biggest Fire Emblem title borrows elements from JRPGs to create a more expansive world with more to explore, but the option to grind in between missions gels awkwardly with the gameplay and makes the story either too easy or populated with abrupt difficulty spikes. Character and script work have gotten a big boost with the return of detailed Support conversations and an emphasis on coupling and relationships as part of the story, and localization is great. Character and stage design are also wonderful and most everyone in the cast grows on the player. On the gameplay side you can expect the usual, but there's too much dependence on the Pair-up System and missions lack variety. There's tons of side content and DLC, including recruitable characters from all past games, and the game is in general a treat to series fans. If you're looking for a deep and challenging strategy experience this may leave you wanting, but it's full of fun and polish.|
|Harvest Moon 3D: A New Beginning||Simulation||One of the best Harvest Moon games in a long time. For those not familiar with the series, it's basically a farming/life sim where you raise crops, take care of livestock, interact with the townsfolk, and get married. It's a lot more fun and addicting than it sounds. For those who are already Harvest Moon fans, rest assured that ANB has enough new content to keep things interesting but keeps the same core gameplay of the series intact (and the NPCs are far better than in recent installments). The only real "gimmick" is the customization aspect, which is actually fucking awesome because you can essentially make the town and your farm look however you want. The 3D aspect isn't great and the first month is slow, but overall it's a solid game.|
|Kid Icarus: Uprising||Rail Shooter/Action-Adventure||Easily one of the best 3DS games. Loads of amounts and types of weapons, powers, and items AND online and local multiplayer (on-foot). The solo-play story mode has on-rail shmup action stages and exploratory on-foot stages to find new stuff. It also destroys the 4th wall. Difficulty is player-adjusted from laughably easy to brick-shittingly hard. If you're a Smash Bros. fan, you'll find hints of it in gameplay and music (thank Masahiro Sakurai for that). Playing its predecessors isn't necessary to enjoy this. The controls DO take getting used to, but can be adjusted in button-action setups and stylus sensitivity. Also, Circle Pad Pro is a must for lefties. One "major" weakness is that some of the challenges can be bullshit to pull off.|
Controls are a make or break issue. If you don't like the controls you will not enjoy the rest of the game.
|Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance||Action RPG||Happens after KH2, leads into 3. Play as both Sora and Riku, each now with unique skills, and both are in a dream world, so no Goofy and Donald. Instead you tame dream world enemies, each giving a variety of abilities, but features a pseudo Pokemon petting system to take full advantage of them. Gameplay is similar to Birth by Sleep (minus command fusion), but now with the lovechild of all the Drive form abilities in KH2 being at immediate disposal. Several new Disney worlds and characters. Also, If you care about the story, don't miss this, or KH3 won't make any sense. But, if you're new to KH, an HD collection of the originals is available on PS3. Sadly, the TWEWY stuff isn't as important as you may have hoped.|
|Kirby: Triple Deluxe||Platformer||Handheld Kirby done in 2.5D perspective. Simple platforming fun with unique and colorful characters. One of the newest copy abilities is that of a rhinoceros beetle that allows Kirby to impale his enemies which is incredibly satisfying. Also features some bonus games, one similar to Super Smash Bros. in which you can battle with your own customizable Kirby, and the other being a King Dedede rhythm game.|
|The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds||Action-Adventure||A 2D style Zelda in THREE DEE. Serves as a more direct sequel to A Link to the Past, using largely the same overworld. Introduces new items, system mechanics, and ways to solves puzzles, which includes turning Link into a 2D painting and sidling along flat surfaces (way cooler than it sounds). Travel between Hyrule and 'Lorule' (yeah, I know, it's retarded) which serves as the game's version of the dark world. The most 'old school' style Zelda game in at least a decade, and a real treat to long time fans, also has the most freedom since the original (you can complete the dungeons in almost any damn order you please). The game took a page from the Tingle RPG's book and heavily revolves around rupees, which actually ends up working in it's favor since any features relying on them were well implemented (no more bag sizes, you can carry 9,999 from the start). Honestly, this might be the best Zelda game since... whatever your last favorite was, let's not argue.|
|The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D||Action-Adventure||A remake of Majora's Mask, and probably the strangest and darkest title in the series. Months after Ocarina of Time, the hero Link finds himself in the strange parallel world of Termina, with only three days to save it from its impending doom. Boss battles have been altered. Now includes fishing!|
|The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D||Action-Adventure||One of the most beloved games of all time, with THREE DEE and some other cool features like updated textures, a touchscreen inventory, some pretty awesome gyroscope aiming, and a boss rush mode. Master Quest is also included, though you have to unlock that by beating the game first, which kind of sucks. There's also a new video-hint system for casuals, but really, who doesn't know their way in this game? Even if it's just a slight remaster of a game we've played countless times before, this is honestly the best version of the game released yet.|
|Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon||Ghostbusting||After 12 years Luigi's Mansion gets a sequel, and a great one at that. Instead of one mansion, you explore five mansions sucking up all of the ghosts and eventually the boss of each mansion. Game has a mission based system this time instead of a free roaming aspect, but it works great. Game has multiplayer as well, but expect this each time you play with others.|
|Mario & Luigi: Dream Team||RPG/Platformer||Arguably the best in the series, Dream Team has the brothers harness the power Luigi's dreams to save the day. Similar to M&L BIS, you interact with Weeg while he naps and stuff happens mid-dream (ex: grab his mustache, then snap it to give Mario a quick ride thru the air). Enemies are pretty trippy, as expected from the M&L series, and are a joy to fight. In the awake world, both bros laying the smack down, mostly with standard controls. In dream world, Mario summons |
|Mario Golf: World Tour||Sports||More Golfing with Mario and pals! Arguably some of the best 3D models for Mario & Co. to come out of Camelot. The game bolsters the most holes in the series, but you have to earn most of them first by gettin' gud! The RPG elements from past portable Golf titles was replaced with stat-changing clothes and costumes for your Mii. There's a stream of official tourneys and challenges plus lots of potential online communities to battle on the green, as well. One of the more chill games to unwind with, though your golfer repeats lines very quickly. This is one of the first Nintendo games to offer a "Season Pass", though it's really a DLC bundle that gives you all of the courses from the N64 Mario Golf (minus the putt-putt, those bastards!) along with 4 more characters. Double your hole content for half the asking price (which kinda sucks in EU & AUS...).|
|Mario Kart 7||Racing||Mario Kart is back and in 60 FPS! New to MK are hang-gliders during big air and you can also drive underwater with little sub-propellers (which kind of suck because it slows the pace of the game down). Courses and characters new and old are featured (along with your Mii). Vehicle Customization lets you change body, tires, and accessory, each affecting your kart. Multiplayer can be local (with download play!) or wi-fi. Along with ghost races, you can also use your spot/street pass modes to register other people and build a "community" of them along with any registered friends who have it. Easily worth getting; the most solid outing of the series. (Comes pre-installed on a special White 3DS bundle in EU, also in a Blue 3DS bundle in NA).|
|Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater 3D||Stealth/Action-Adventure||This version of the MGS classic is a little hit and miss. As the game is available for the same price in HD bundled with 2 other MGS games it's up to the player which version to get. This version offers a few gameplay tweaks but is notably scaled down to work on the portable. It adds a few new features like the EXTREMELY helpful crouch walking and photo camo. The 3D is great and adds very useful depth to the jungle environment. That being said the game suffers from harsh framerate drops in cutscenes and the controls are pretty bad compared to every other version of MGS3, so you may want to play it elsewhere.
Also Available on PS Vita, as part of Metal Gear Solid HD Collection
|Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate||Monster Hunting||Addictive Action game. A combination of and update to the content of Tri and Portable 3rd. Fairly difficult for the uninitiated, more of the same for the familiar; will suck hours away in both cases. Multiplayer is local only unless you have a Wii U, in which case you'd probably be playing the Wii U version. Still a great single player experience and better off for the fact that it's portable. Plays better with a CPP.|
The game isn't for everyone, as the game's style of gameplay and pacing are hard to get into at first. The demo on eShop is also a poor representation of the final product.
|Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate||Monster Hunting||This is the best game in the series to date. It does the best job the series has so far to explain the mechanics to newcomers, although it's still better to learn things from an experienced friend or from a guide. Many improvements have been made since the previous installment. More platforming, larger areas, and new mechanics. Now features a fully integrated online multiplayer and a "Guild Quest" system, so you can hunt with your friends to your heart's content. The difficulty is ramped up this time around, which is a welcome change from the ease of Tri. As with any Monster Hunter, you can easily dump hundreds of hours into this game. And you'll enjoy every second of it.|
|New Super Mario Bros. 2||Platformer||More from the New Super Mario Bros. series. Pretty much what you'd expect, though this time it places a lot of emphasis on coin-collecting, and features new items that provide more coins, such as Gold Flowers, rings, and a block mask that produces coins as Mario runs.|
|Persona Q: Shadow of the Labyrinth||RPG||A crossover RPG featuring the protagonists of Persona 3 and 4, along with a couple new faces. Gameplay is similar to that of the Etrian Odyssey series, with some added Persona elements. The chibi arstyle may be off-putting for some, though this game is actually canon to the series.|
|Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire||RPG/Monster Sim||The remakes everyone has been screaming about for ages, generation III. Now upgraded with 3D graphics and all sorts of new features, including all of the good stuff from X and Y. New Mega Evolutions, fairy type, mini games, etc.
The characters have all been redesigned and there's even a new post game mode. It also features the most legendaries obtainable in one Pokémon game to date, and aside from the Hoenn starters, you can also grab a Johto, Unova, and Sinnoh starter as well.
Also, cosplay Pikachu is a thing.
|Pokémon X and Y||RPG/Monster Sim||The sixth generation of Pokémon, and the debut of the main series on the 3DS. It's another solid RPG, this time set in the Kalos region, which is based on France (includes a city loosely based on Paris and everything). Notable for being the first time the series has used 3D graphics, both in and out of battle. The Pokémon themselves look impressive, using detailed models with some smooth animations, however everything else looks only slightly better than a DS game. Has a couple of fully featured mini-games: Pokémon-Amie, which lets you play with your Pokémon Nintendogs-style, and Super Training, a Rail Shooter-esque mode which is another way to EV train your team. Other features include Mega Evolutions (enables some older Pokémon to temporarily evolve Digimon-style mid-battle), better online features (you can access everything online related anytime from the touch screen, ranging from the GTS to online battles), customisable characters (lots of different clothes to buy) and a brand new type: Fairy. The main story is one of the lengthiest of the series (the gap between the first and second gym is huge), however it is quite easy and there is little post game content. There is also a disturbingly low amount of new Pokémon to catch (only 68) which means you'll mostly be seeing familiar faces on your journey. Still, it's one worth taking.
The gist: Much like the rest of the games in the Pokemon series, it's similar to the last with slightly updated features and new minigames. The whole game is in 3D which looks good sometimes and the story mode is long but easy.
|Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy||Puzzle||Follows the conclusion of Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask. Story revolves around the Azran Legacies, an ancient relic and an organization called Targent trying to use its power for their own purposes. Similar gameplay to Miracle Mask, and includes over 500 new puzzles.|
|Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask||Puzzle||Professor Layton, except that the 2D sprites are replaced with 3D models and the puzzles utilize the 3D effects. Story wise, it's the second prequel game in the Professor Layton series. Features a strange villain who dons a mask that does all sorts of twisted shit, like petrifying people and levitating things, among other actions. Guess who has to put him down and save the day? This also explores the backstory of the lovable prof, Hershel Layton, back when he was a younger badass with an untamed mane.|
|Professor Layton VS Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney||Puzzle/Adventure||A crossover game featuring Professor Layton and Phoenix Wright. Borrows elements from both series, the investigation portions are similar to Layton gameplay, and the trials themselves are similar to the Ace Attorney series. Features animated cutscenes and full voice acting.|
|Project X Zone||Tactics/Fighting||Fan service at its finest. Not only a crossover of Capcom, Namco Bandai, and Sega; but a crossover of genres too. Combines tactics gameplay with a "Cross active battle system" combo system for the battle scenes. Does get repetitive towards the end but the production values and the ability to use Ulala from Space Channel 5 makes it all worth it. Caution is advised however, as the game has been known to induce migraines in those sensitive to flashing lights and patterns (read: me).|
|Resident Evil: Revelations||Survival Horror||Revelations blends the new over the shoulder more action orientated RE with the classic corridor wandering atmospheric titles. And it blends pretty well too. Hands down the best looking game on the system and a great use of 3D. The main story will last around 9-10 hours and you will unlock Hell mode after which will have different enemy placement, tougher enemies and fewer ammo, so lots of replay-ability. There's also an offline & online co-op "Raid" mode which has you take out every enemy in the level and get to the goal as efficiently as possible. You unlock and collect weapons in this mode and it has plenty of variety. Game has been ported to the PS3, 360, Wii U, and PC with a couple new features (Raid Mode outfits and DLC), but critics say the 3DS is the best (and cheapest) version. Also DAT JILL ASS!|
|Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure||Rhythm/Puzzle||Nifty little rhythm game for the 3DS. Use the buttons, stylus, dpad and gyro sensors to play through a wide variety of rhythm games on your journey through Paris. There are a few short puzzles here and there, but they are mostly straightforward and don't take much time to complete. The smooth animation and music give this game a nice charm. Supports local multiplayer and streetpass.|
|Rune Factory 4||Simulation/RPG||It's more Rune Factory! Explore dungeons, farm, and get married.|
|Senran Kagura Burst||Beat-em-up||Titty Ninjas on 3DS. For the first in the series, it's a decent beat em up, with an enjoyable story and actually well written characters. That being said, what holds the game back is the very poor framerate. Worth a look if you're interested in seeing how the series started, though you may be better off looking at the other games for gameplay.
North America only got digital only release.
|Shin Megami Tensei IV||RPG/Dungeon Crawler||The long awaited follow-up to 2009's Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey, and the older SMT3: Nocturne. O|
|Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner - Soul Hackers||RPG/Dungeon Crawler||Port of the original JP-only Sega Saturn game. The 3DS version includes fully voiced dialogue, new demons, "Hacks" which allow you to do things like adjust difficulty and a bonus dungeon in which Raidou Kuzunoha from the PS2 Devil Summoner games makes an appearance. Story involves you playing the role of a member of the Hacker group, The Spookies, as they unravel the mystery of the Phantom Society which seeks to steal all the souls of the inhabitants of Amami City via a virtual reality world known as Paradigm X. Since this game is fairly easy it would be a good starting place for individuals interested in getting into the SMT games.|
|Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Overclocked||Strategy RPG||A remix port of the original. A solid combo of visual novel and strategy RPG, with the SMT-standard Press Turn battle system. Full voice acting, more skills, more demons to recruit, slightly smoother graphics, a Compendium to register and resummon demons for cash, and an extra 8th day scenario for four key characters, along with a few new game+ bonuses. Not bad if you never played it before and possibly are a Megaten fan. Out in Euroland now, thanks to based Ghostlight.|
|Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2 Record Breaker||SRPG||Just like how they re-released the first Devil Survivor, here's number 2! New additions include voice acting that isn't as bad as Overclocked, new story that happens after the events of the original that adds about 30 hours, and new demons and skills yada yada.|
|Story of Seasons||Farm Simulator/RPG||Technically Harvest Moon but with a new name (published by XSEED, the Harvest Moon property is owned by Natsume in the west). Create and customize your own character before heading into town to build your own farm. Visit your friends homes, exchange items, and grow crops together!
Not for Europe.
|Star Fox 64 3D||Rail Shooter||The graphics look really impressive, everything plays and runs much faster and smoother too. Allows for traditional or 3DS controls that use the Gyro-Sensor. One neat update is the option of score attack to replay individual stages at your leisure, as opposed to straight out story mode. There's also new multiplayer battle options and modes, even a live feed of players' faces.|
|Super Mario 3D Land||Platformer||Essentially Mario 2D and Mario 3D sandwiched to create this game. "The most Mario-like 3D Mario game ever" with flagpoles, airships, music and question blocks, and even Boom-Boom from SMB3 return! The Tanooki suit returns without flight (too easy), but still acts the same as before. The new boomerang suit is like the hammer bros suit, but with 'rangs. The game auto-angles camera to create depth and emphasize 3D, but also has side-scrolling levels. Some levels are weaker than others, but its the latter half and post-game unlocked levels that make this a keeper. Also, Weegee.|
|Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS||Fighting||The first in the Super Smash Bros. series you can take on the go. Includes all of the characters that the Wii U version has, though this unfortunately meant the exclusion of Ice Climbers due to hardware limitations (SAKURAIIII!).
Tons of trophies and upgrades to collect, and the game actually runs incredibly smooth on the 3DS. 60 FPS for characters, with assist trophies/Pokémon running in 30. Online matches run pretty well without items on, though you'll probably lag otherwise.
Features a beautiful Magicant stage from the Mother series, exclusive to the 3DS version, as well as a great throwback stage to F-Zero on the SNES.
|Super Street Fighter IV: 3D Edition||2D Fighter||It's Super Street Fighter IV Y'all, but on the tiny screen and in THREE DEE. |
|Tales of the Abyss||Action RPG||A port of the classic PS2 game. The original NA extras on the PS2 version are in all 3DS versions. If you already played it before you know what to expect. Only real changes are the massively improved loading times, always a good thing, and the 3D which unfortunately isn't very good at all. The game will last at least a good 60+ hours and is all in all a very good RPG game. Very limited quantities so the game is quite hard to find in Europe; America seems to be getting lots of printings. The MC is annoying at first, but the other characters are pretty ace.|
|Tetris Axis||Puzzle||Maybe the most jam-packed Tetris. 20+ Tetris game modes, some based on classic Tetris, some based on Bombliss, and some just plain new. There's also some AR game modes, but those tend to suck without a flat table and good lighting. There's also some versus and Co-op modes as well. In addition, there's wi-fi modes, and even some Download Play modes to share with other 3DS owners who lack the Tetris Axis card. SpotPass lets you find new items for Fever modes. In addition to solo play, 2-8 players can multiplayer, depending on the game and method. Some say it's not as cool as Tetris DS (the one with the Nintendo characters), but this is still fun and damn solid.
Known simply as Tetris in non-NTSC regions.
|Theatrhythm Final Fantasy||Rhythm/RPG||It's sorta like Elite Beat Agents meets Beatmania with Final Fantasy characters (if that makes any sense). There's 3 main modes: Field, Battle, and Event. Field has characters journey and find loot to a beat, Event has series cutscenes with music instructions, and Battle has you fight iconic monsters and bosses. While it does have some RPG elements to it (Life bar, abilities, etc.) they are pretty much useless and there just to be there. Has Streetpass and DLC. Over 50 songs at first, but you can access more, and use them in the non-Story-Mode Challenge Mode. Extra Characters can also be accessed via DLC and non-DLC means. There's a lot More Info that would fill this page up, so get reading. If you're a fan of the franchise and/or its music, this is a must-have game.|
|Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call||Rhythm/RPG||The sequel to Theatrhythm Final Fantasy. Includes over 200 songs, 60 characters, and a brand new Versus Battle Mode, which involves two players competing for a higher score, with status effects to prevent each other from winning.|
|Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars||Strategy||Arguably the sleeper hit of the 3DS launch. Closer to Fire Emblem than anything else. The average playtime is about 40 hours, and that's only with the main story. There's also a heapin' helpin' of extra missions to play as well.|
|Tomodachi Life||Simulation||A really weird life simulator featuring your Miis. Recommended for those who might be a little sick of Animal Crossing and want to try something new. All hail the Virtual Boy!|
|Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward||Visual Novel/Puzzle||The sequel to the awesomeness that was 999 on the DS. Amazing story and characters wrapped up with plenty of well-designed puzzles that will suck away your time. Obviously contains a lot of reading (it's a VN) so look up gameplay to make sure it's for you.|
WARNING: This version of the game has a bug where your saves can get corrupted if you save during the puzzle sections in the PEC Room or the Crew Quarters. If you have a Vita, that version is recommended instead.
New Nintendo 3DSEdit
Amusingly enough, Nintendo dropped the "Ware" name from Wii and DSi, because they felt devs and audiences would think they were making inferior products (given the notorious restrictions associated with the names, they weren't too far off with that).
These are downloadable with real world monies and taxes, which requires you to use a credit card monies or a 3DS card to add cash. If you don't have enough cash at the moment of buying the game and are only off a little, you can use your credit card to add just what you need to make the difference.
Games with EndingsEdit
These games tend to have better length to them. However, they have an eventual goal and an ending. Technically, you might not play them more than once, but you could if you felt like it. Some actually have more replay value than others due to extra endings, alternate "paths", time-trials, play-style possibilities, etc.
|3D Classics: Excitebike||Racing||It's fucking Excitebike with depth-perception. You can also create your own tracks, and save several of them. Sadly, you can't share them with other 3DS-es. Not too shabby, and easy to get into. Pretty good for one's first foray into 3DS' 3D-ness.|
|3D Classics: Kid Icarus||Platformer/|
|Graphical remix of the now-famous Pit's first game. The backgrounds are all updated to give stages extra flavor. Blends elements found in Metroid, Super Mario Bros, and Zelda. You can upgrade Pit's gear, find secret shops and passages, and there's plenty of tough jumps, maze-like fortresses, and bosses to conquer. Noted for its difficulty, but after the first stage and an upgrade or two, it isn't as bad as some make it sound. Has "custom" controls which make it play better and like the GB game, and it uses the FDS save system instead of passwords.|
Worth buying, same with its Game Boy sequel (if it comes over here), which improves a number of elements from this game, and has more challenges to face.
|3D Classics: Kirby's Adventure||Platformer||Essentially the same game, but now crisper and cleaner (palette errors and slowdown are completely gone), and with sprites/backgrounds that stick out/recede a bit more. Feels like you're looking at a pop-up book with 3D on. Without it, you get that old NES feel, sans CRT. It's a bit hard looking at the tiny screen, but it looks really great when you find a comfy viewing position and 3D level.|
If you've never played it before, go ahead and get this. If not, it depends on how well you remember/love the original versus GBA's Nightmare in Dreamland rearrangement. For anyone on the fence, have a friend and/or relative buy it on their 3DS (or yours) and give it a try.
|3D Classics: Twinbee||Shoot 'Em Up/|
Cute 'Em Up
|One of the classic Cute 'Em Up pioneers. Similar to Xevious except cuter, faster, and with more weapons and options. Like Xevious 3D, you can control your rate of fire per button. If you don't know, there's loads of enemies onscreen often, and your bell system gives you a power-up relating to how many times you fire a bell to change its color. As such, having the options for different fire rates is welcome. Great for shmup beginners, though a bit hard for gaming beginners. The pop-out effect is subtle, but just enough to keep on for a while at a time (it can strain the eyes with all the shit flying around sometimes).|
|Art of Balance Touch!||Balance/|
|If you like balancing stuff, this is the game for you. Balance a variety of shapes made of various matters. Weight, angle, shape, density, composition, all these and more factor into creating perfect balance of your given structures. Card houses ain't shit! If all that sounds kind of boring, then check this video to see how challenging it can be to achieve balance, but also to maintain it long enough to clear the stage.|
|Attack of the Friday Monsters! A Tokyo Tale||Adventure/Interactive Story||A very, VERY short (think about two or three hours) adventure game with a card-battling minigame for extra replayability (even though it's just glorified rock-paper-scissors).You play as a young boy who has just moved to a small town in rural-ish Japan in the 1970's. While there, he makes new friends, plays a lot of card games, solves the townspeople's menial problems, and solves the mystery behind the monsters that invade the town every Friday night. Yeah. The big draw to the game is its emphasis on giant monsters and superheroes and the television shows that they were featured on. It really draws you into the setting and gives the town this fantastically charming atmosphere that carries the game to its end. And, like most screenshots show, there IS an actual fight between a giant monster and an Ultraman ripoff, but it's at the very end of the game and isn't as significant as people might think. The main focus is on the children and the events that they take part in. That said, if you're a classic tokusatsu fan, interested in early 70's culture in Japan, or just like a charming and endearing story, give this game a chance.|
|Bugs vs. Tanks!||Simulation/Survival||Do you like tanks? Have you just watched Girls Und Panzer or visited a Tank museum? This game will scratch your tank itch like crazy, collecting the tanks is great and there are ~35 to collect and you can paint them in different camo colours or blasphemous heart patterns. Gameplay is solid you handle moving with circle pad and rotate turret left/right with the buttons and can have shooting on auto or manually fire. The whole silly tank based survival game stick doesn't overstay its welcome as the story(What there is of it) moves well between objectives. Streetpass is shit. Worth trying if you love tanks or picking up on sale if not.|
|Cave Story||Action/Adventure||Action-adventure platformer with run and gun action, and some LIGHT metroidvania aspects. You can find weapons, gadgets, and a few types of upgrades throughout the areas you explore. Some upgrades you have to make some extra effort to obtain or you'll miss them, giving the game some nice replay value, which is taken further thanks to multiple endings. Similar to the Steam variation released before it. If you want to know more about this specific version, check HERE|
|Crimson Shroud||Tabletop RPG/RPG||A wonderful game that is certainly different. Crimson Shroud is a game that you are likely to either love or hate. It is an RPG from the creator of Vagrant Story/Final Fantasy Tactics that is heavily inspired and influenced by classic tabletop RPGs. Roll dice, get loot, and use your imagination. It can be completed in 6-7 hours, but features a New Game+ with new areas, items, stronger monsters, and a new ending totaling play time to around 20 hours. Features a great soundtrack, gorgeous visuals, and costs $8.|
|Dillon's Rolling Western||Beat 'Em Up/|
|Protect the west, ranger! A mix of strategy and beat 'em up, with a dash of adventure. In the day, you roam areas for materials and items to help you build and upgrade guntowers to protect towns from monsters. In the evening, you fight said monsters with said towers, but you can also tear them up Goron-style with spin dashes and claw-slashes. At night, you can take side-quests to fulfill the next day and also buy upgrades to your skills. Gameplay is primarily touch-screen based, but works surprisingly well, taking little time to figure out. The tough part is protecting towns!|
|Fluidity: Spin Cycle (known in Europe as Hydroventure: Spin Cycle)||Platformer/|
|Sequel to a WiiWare game. It scraps the Metroidvania-ish layout of the first game with four huge interconnected levels for sixty linear mini-levels. Just like in original game you collect rainbow drop, puzzle pieces and flowers to unlock stuff and control the game with tilt. A new type of levels with full 360 spin might confuse at first, but once you realize you can control the game holding 3DS horizontally like a plate with water it will be fine. Aside of gimmick of controlling water to make it basically fly, these levels also add new gravity gameplay elements. 3D effect is turned off due to all tilting and spinning.|
|Gunman Clive||2D Action-Platformer||A great Mega Man tribute game done in a western style. For $2 it's one of the best deals on the eShop. It's a bit short though, but two extra playable characters (which play differently to Clive) add to the replay value.|
|Liberation Maiden||Shoot 'em up||You live your life normally as the sixteen year old female Prime Minister of Japan until some aliens attack and destroy your country's green areas while being a general pain in the ass. Or something. What matters is that it's up to you to wear a hi-tech suit to fly around and shoot the aliens in the |
|Mighty Switch Force||2D Puzzle-Platformer||Another entry in WayForward's "Mighty" series. Traverse a wide variety of stages with a weak beam-pistol but a mighty instant "switch" mechanic that turns on/off blocks for you to utilize by jumping on/in them, using them in puzzles, and killing/utilizing enemies. All of this is much tougher than it sounds, even if the game doesn't seem very long. Meant to capture the "repeat appeal" of NES run n' guns, so if you only play games once, this ain't for you. Getting the par times though? Quite the challenge that may take many repeat attempts! In the mean time, Pay what you want for the delicious soundtrack (even free)! Has an HD version on Wii U with additional levels.|
|Mighty Switch Force 2||2D Puzzle-Platformer||Similar to the first, except now everything is on fire. It's up to you to hose down the flames, and save all the dames. And of course, the switching aspect still comes into play. Also, save the hidden baby in each stage (to much hilarity) to unlock an alternate skin. Visuals and sounds are as groovy as ever, if not more so. Has a Wii U port, but regrettably, it didn't add or change anything unlike the port of the first. It's probably best to play the first before this, but feel free to jump in with this.|
|Mutant Mudds||Platformer||Started as a DS(i) 3D platformer, and is now a "12-bit" 2D platformer by Renegade Kid, who did the DS FPS games Dementium 1+2 and Moon. You control Max with his water blaster and jetpack as he combats mud-critters and intricate stages. Level design is MASTERFUL and challenging after the early areas (the secret levels more so). "Virtual Boy Wario Land" was a big inspiration for the interwoven-triple-plane platforming and the 3D effect is great. Has a free demo with progressively harder stages. Official Site with media and FREE soundtrack.|
|'Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy'||Adventure / Visual Novel||Ports of the first three Phoenix Wright DS games: some of the best adventure games in existence, all bundled together in a nice package. All 3 games are conveniently available from the beginning, so if you're eager to jump into your favorite game you're free to do so. Features better graphics that enhance the animu atmosphere. The 3D effect is nice and subtle that works to benefit the character art. A great deal for both fans of the series and newcomers alike.|
|Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies||Adventure / Visual Novel||Phoenix Wright has his badge back, and it's a very welcome return. Phoenix, Apollo (no longer a pushover, thankfully), and newcomer Athena are all playable at points, and they share the spotlight well. The story is decidedly darker and grittier than previous games - so much so that the rating's been bumped up to M. Also for the first time, we get fully animated cutscenes, with voice acting (English voices are campy but in a charming way). The difficulty has been ramped way, way down, and past characters make cursory appearances if any at all, but the story is heart-pounding and worth the game's price. There's also a DLC case in which Phoenix defends a whale (it makes sense in context), that hits on all the same points as the main game.|
|Sakura Samurai: Art of the Sword||Beat 'Em Up||A short, but sweet game about, well, this. You play as said pure-hearted samurai and slice some motherfuckers up. The gameplay is a melting pot of classic Nintendo, but most similar to Punch-Out, but also with aspects of Zelda and Mystery of Murasame Castle, plus dashes of a few others. In short, mashing the A button gets you nowhere, as you must dodge and counter instead. Enemy thugs come in droves in each area that's not a town, so don't think there's ever a dull moment! There's also some bonus gameplay modes as well.|
|Sayonara Umihara Kawase/Yumi's Odd Odyssey||Puzzle-Platformer||Use your rubbery fishing line as a grappling hook to complete physics puzzles. Frustrating due to a high difficulty curve and required accuracy of game mechanics. It's worth redoing completed levels to practice what you've learnt. Stages are short and the game complements speed-running with best times, high scores and a replay feature. However, just unlocking levels will take a lot of practice, patience, and deaths. Visuals aren't amazing, but certainly unique. 3rd game in the series "Umihara Kawase". Only available outside of JP as an e-shop title. Trailer.|
|The Starship Damrey||Puzzle/Horror||Okay, this one is hard. Part of it's appeal is that they fool you again and again, so I can't really explain why this is so cool. Tons of stuff to read, but it's a short game. Buy it in the afternoon, leave it downloading, play it all in one night.|
|SteamWorld Dig||Metroidvania||Game is a cross between Dig dug/Motherload gameplay about digging up minerals and taking them to a western themed robot town and metroidvania. There are main paths where you are free to carve your own path to extract as much $$ as possible and then there are caves where you can retry if you die and are much more skill and puzzle based, these are where you obtain new powers like a projectile or a steam jump. Having to manage your water well between your various different gadgets is good and the game is paced well so you never get bored mining in one area for two long.|
|The Denpa Men: They Came by Wave||RPG||An RPG made by Genius Sorority. Capture leotard-clad men in your environment's wi-fi connections (and after the first few dungeons, you can use QR codes to get new pals). Take them into dungeons and battle Dragon Quest-ish style (though unlike DQ8 and 9, battles move at breakneck speed). Although there are no "weapons", there are different powers per Denpa (healing, curing, elemental "magic", buffs, debuffs, ailments), along with items, accessories (with various helpful effects), and clothes (which acts like armor, but provide other helpful bonuses as well) to buy and find.|
Silly, fun, and surprisingly engaging for a $10 RPG. Post-game will stomp you into the ground. Will keep you busy long enough to give you your money's worth.
You can play the free demo and transfer your save to the main game.
|The Denpa Men 2: Beyond the Waves||RPG||Much improved sequel to the first, which it can also transfer data from (but not to). A bit more conventional thanks to new additions like more equipment parts per Denpa and an overworld; but, it still retains the 1st's whimsical nature and foundations.|
Further additions add further depth in the forms of fishing, gardening, online battling (your team vs another player's), and a bonus dungeon which only allows progress based on streetpasses. All of which can be utilized for additional and helpful items.
Once again, there's a demo which lets you transfer your save to the main game.
If you've never played the first, it is recommended to start here.
|Flip gravity back and forth to leap across increasingly elaborate challenges in a quasi-sandbox alternate dimension to incredibly catchy tunes. You'll die, a lot, but a proliferation of checkpoints means you'll rarely lose more than a minute when you die (although you might rip out several hairs when you get stuck on certain parts). It's fairly short, but that makes it a game where, once you finish, you'll occasionally want to fire it up and run through it again, which is always a good thing. The 3D effect doesn't really add much (parallax scrolling), but is a nice extra. The 3DS version supposedly goes a little faster than the PC variants, but I personally can't verify this (if someone else can, please do). Still, hardly a bad choice to invest in, especially if you like these sorts of games.|
|The closest thing to Runner 2 you're gonna get on the 3DS. Play as a little knight with a giant music note staff, which you use to smack monsters in their stupid faces to music. It has bosses, and one of them is a fucking wolf that is part snowmobile, making it instant GOTY material. There's also a bonus level for each world set to Pokemon music. For $15, it's a little steep for a downloadable, but show your support so Game Freak can finally make more not Pokemon games.|
These games have that "Tetris appeal" in that there is no real "ending" to shoot for, and you can replay them constantly. Most of these are puzzle games (a small few aren't), but with a variety in gameplay. Most of these have some sort of single-player goal-centric mode to accompany endless modes, however, the main meat of the purchase comes from the latter.
|3D Classics: Xevious'||Shoot 'Em Up||One of the original shmup granddaddies. It was famous for having two planes of action (air and ground), each with enemies simultaneously out to get you. One nice thing about this version is that it has settings to control your rate of fire per button. It's one of those love or hate games, requiring patience, steady hands, and a refined focus to not die constantly. If you're on the fence, go for Twinbee, which is similar and arguably better. If you prefer something older-school and like a challenge and an urge to beat your high-scores, then hop in your Solvalou and get blasting. The 3D effects and planes look great here, and really heighten the experience.|
|Freakyforms: Your Creations, Alive!||Platformer||The bastard child of Cocoron, Drawn to Life, and Animal Crossing. Make a Formee character out of different parts, including name, phrase, voice, abilities, and body parts (wings, wheels, arms, etc.). Share your critters with Streetpass and/or QR codes. Control it with the touch screen in different ways. It can eat, shit eggs, do little quests for other characters, and earn money for additional character-creation options and bonuses, and even be re-edited. Stage elements can also be visually changed. The more you create and play, the larger the world grows and the more areas there are to explore.. It's stupid mess-around fun if you're creative with it, but if you just make dicks everywhere, don't bother.|
Replaced by Freakyforms Deluxe (the old version isn't available anymore). While you can't transfer data straight to "Deluxe", you can still use the QR codes from this old one on that (but due to new parts and such, not vice-versa (IIRC)).
|Pushmo/Pullblox||Puzzle||This shit is fucking awesome and possibly eShop GOTYAY. You're a little guy who has to save little babies, by pulling and pushing parts of giant picture backgrounds in and out to create platforms for you to jump on to reach the part where the baby is. Starts simple, then gets quite challenging with really well thought out puzzles. Also includes a great level editor, and you can scan in other people's creations via QR codes. Features lovable aesthetics and an adorable soundtrack. Well worth money, and if possible, should be your first eShop purchase. Note: you can often find QR codes floating about different websites or make threads. (If the demand is high, we'll put some on this wiki!)|
|Crashmo/Fallblox||3D Puzzle-Platformer||Sequel to Pushmo. Mallo is back, and this time saves birds instead of babbys because I don't know. Instead of just pushing and pulling back and forth up to 3 spaces though, you can push and pull them left and right and even take them out of socket (since there's no longer walls of just 3 layers) from any 90 degree angle, making formations come falling down (or crashing down, because shit's gotta be loud IN AMERICA). However, you've gotta be smart, as some goals can't be reached without careful strategy. There's also floating blocks as well. There's over 140 stages, but like the original you can also make your own stages with an editor and share them via QR codes.|
|Stretchmo/Fullblox||3D Puzzle-Platformer||The Pushmo series continues with a new installment. This one is more similar to Pushmo than Crashmo: save babby by pushing and pulling blocks to escalate weird murals. The catch is, this time, is that you can also stretch blocks, which is often necessary. Puzzles have a bit more depth than the first two. This is 'Free to Try', which means the first seven stages are a glorified demo, and then there's four 'packs' to purchase. Pack one is 4.99, has one hundred levels. The other three are 2.99 and have fifty levels each. Just buy it as a package for 9.99 to save monies. There's a fifth pack as well, but it unlocks automatically if you beat the previous four. As always, endlessly replayable thanks to level creation and QR codes.|
|Zen Pinball 3D||Pinball||Surprisingly accurate to real pinball (even has LCD displays and "TILT" sensor). Game comes with 4 original tables to compete for your high scores, each table has its own mini-game-like gadgets and gimmicks, mini-missions and rewards. Has online leaderboards which is may keep you replaying to beat that dude above you in the rankings. It's generally liked by critics and audiences, plus the 3D is impressive, although the entire game is restricted to the top screen which can be disorienting; however, there's many views to choose from, so you can find that sweet spot.|
Marvel Pinball from the same people is coming soon as a separate game so you might want to wait for that if comics are your thing.
These are not technically games, but have neat features. These include internet-based and/or sometimes creative-driven applications, along with other things that may come in handy or are just kinda fun to mess with. Unlike DSiWare, these are not limited to your 3DS' system memory, but run off your SD card. Which is good, because some have pretty big file sizes.
|"Colors!" was originally only on DS flashcarts and smartphones, but they managed to get an official release on 3DS. It works really damn well, regardless. Easy to figure out and quite functional. In addition to normal draw+paint, you can divide stuff into 3D layers for a nice pop-out effect. You can also access the official "Colors! 3D Gallery". You can also simultaneously paint with others on a shared canvas using wireless (sadly, it's only local). Nothing as fun as shitting up your pal's digital masterpiece. If you like art-ing it up, get it. It may be a bit pricey to some, but for what it does and what you can do with it, it's worth it. Well, unless you suck at art (in which case, and I shit you not, it includes a few coloring-book style outlines for you to fill in).|
|It's fucking Netflix. The application itself is free, but you have to pay 8 bucks a month if you aren't a member already (if you are, it's no additional charge to you). If you just want to try it out, there's a 1 month free-trial period to non-members. SD/non-widescreen movies don't take up the full 3DS screen (think DS games), but widescreen will, along with HD (but quality is compressed a bit)|
If you've got a good connection, Takes about 35-40 seconds on average to start up, and less to get a movie prepped (~20 seconds for features an hour-long or more, only ~10 seconds at most for smaller stuff), but after that it's smooth streaming (even FF/Rewind resuming is just as fast as normal). If there isn't a good connection nearby, it doesn't tend to be as smooth (well, no shit). Awesome on the 3DS because LOOK MA NO HANDS, which you can't really do with the Vita.
|A small app that is just a video streamer for random BS through and through. Some videos are good, a lot are bad. A free app that takes up about 2,500 blocks of extra space (mostly for storing the pre-cached videos), so check 'dem SD Cards. Most videos oddly don't use the 3D feature or at least not well. Official Nintendo ones tend to be a bit better in that regard though.|
|Pokedex 3D Pro||Tech-demo/|
|It's an index of them there Pokemon critters. You get a set of 10 of pokeymans listed and you need to get the rest through the 3DS SpotPass. Kind of derp, |
|Swapnote/Nintendo Letter Box||Messaging/|
3DS Virtual ConsoleEdit
If you missed them the first time, and feel like supporting the classics over pirating them, check out this page for a good idea of what (may be up) to buy: Game Boy (Color). The only games that not really up for grabs are typically those with licensing issues, such as Disney games. Game Gear is also worth checking, if Nintendo ever gets off its fucking ass and puts more stuff on there outside of Japan.
Note that the availability of these games will be different depending on your country. For NA, check availability HERE, EU checks HERE, and JP checks HERE.
Although mostly similar, the VC libraries and prices do differ per region, so beware. Also, in case you didn't know, the NES VC for 3DS is different from the Wii NES VC and the two have access to different separate libraries instead of the same one. Pricing seems to be company set, and not all games cost the same, regardless of the game's original system.
- NES, GB and GBC all have "save state-like" functions called "Restore Points", located on the touch screen. If you wish, they can also be disabled (and re-enabled at any time).
- All games are presented as is, so no in-game coding has changed (with a few exceptions).
- NES Games are locked in at a specific ratio and cannot be changed. For turn-taking multiplayer, such as in Super Mario Bros, pressing L+R+Y will switch between player 1 and 2. Regarding simultaneous multiplayer, a few games currently utilize it and it is done via Download Play (i.e. Player 2 sets their 3DS for Download Play and gets sent the game data). Restore Points are turned off during Download Play multiplayer.
- Game Boy games are only in monochrome (black/grey/white or shades of green; switch with L+R+Y) and have no Super Game Boy or Game Boy Color support. Game Boy Color games are always full color in their original palettes (so no monochrome option, and still no Super Game Boy support).
- Holding select or start upon starting a GB or GBC game until it loads up will let you play GB and GBC games with a system border and the original resolutions.
- Regarding controls: For NES, GB, and GBC, B is B and A is A, just as Select and Start work respectively. Y acts as a short-hand version of the Select button and X acts as a 2nd B button for NES only. For GB and GBC, X instead brings up the VC menu.
Unlike Nintendo's VC, the Game Gear features many more options (excluding multiplayer (out of Japan at least)), including: fully customizable buttons that include options for rapid-fire, screen mode (tiny ass screen with GG system border or expanded, full-screen mode), system color, "Blur" (ghosting/after image), system performance (normal or original (i.e. likely includes slowdown and things like that)) in addition to the normal save state-like restore points. The system colors (i.e. the border) to pick are black, blue, yellow, or red. Damn. Even now, Sega does what Nintendon't.
Screen/Menu Example (text is respective to country, so it's likely in English for you):
It may seem odd to want to play something that would be considered "outdated", but fuck you, DSiWare had some pretty fun stuff. It will also be supported for a little while longer, so you might want to keep your eye out for some future releases anyway. Of course, now you get charged sales tax, but that's entirely Nintendo's fault. Thankfully, they get reviews and videos on 3DS, so you can get a preview before you buy.
DSiWare is downloadable and transferable with the 3DS. However, you won't be able to keep any of your save data (due to Nintendo's legal bullshit). That said, all you have to do is download a free application off of the DSiWare Shop (the 3DS already has the means to do so without said app). Have both plugged in (or you'll get a fuckton of warning messages), set up a full or custom transfer (the full is much more convenient), and Pikmin will transfer all your data. If you get an error message, whatever was in the middle of being transferred will have to re-transfer, but everything else will already be sent over, and won't start all the way over.