Whether you have a Nintendo 3DS or a Wii U, the 2015 calendar year brought forth a wide-variety of quality software releases to Nintendo fans. The Wii U saw several major titles release this year with Splatoon, Super Mario Maker, and Xenoblade Chronicles X leading the way. On the handheld side of things, the Nintendo 3DS saw a new model release, the New Nintendo 3DS XL, along with compelling software from Nintendo of which include: The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D, Xenoblade Chronicles 3D, and Yo-Kai Watch. As the holiday shopping season nears its end, here is a list of Nintendo games you should strongly consider getting for the Wii U and 3DS owner on your shopping list.
The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D
The Nintendo 3DS has found itself to be the premiere Nintendo portable when it comes to quality The Legend of Zelda titles as the handheld now hosts four great Zelda games – two of which released this year. If you are a fan of epic 3D adventures, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D is a must-own for the Nintendo 3DS.
After having made a name for itself on the Nintendo 64 in 2000, gamers have long since debated whether or not Majora’s Mask is the best Zelda game ever made. While that debate will last for years still to come, one thing is clear today: Majora’s Mask 3D is the best way to experience this classic and it’s one of the best games on 3DS.
Players will explore dungeons and manipulate time as they attempt to prevent the end of the world. Overcoming challenging puzzles and collecting useful masks, Majora’s Mask 3D offers a dark story that will captivate players and keep them hooked throughout the entire adventure.
Code Name: S.T.E.A.M.
This game is arguable the most underappreciated release of 2015. Developed by Intelligent Systems, developers of the Fire Emblem and Paper Mario franchises, came a distinct steampunk strategy game that was told via comic book inspired visuals.
Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. wasn’t met with the warmest reception when it released in early 2015 due to slow turn-based combat, but a patch was released to fix that problem and the end result is an addictive and challenging strategy game for 3DS owners to enjoy. The game opens with an alien invasion, and it’s up to a special taskforce led by Abraham Lincoln to overcome and destroy these invaders.
The game is built around the idea of steam. Weapons are fueled by steam and the player will have to gauge their steam reserves as they carefully move their characters on the game board and create strategies. Fans of turn-based strategy games will find the game’s gameplay compelling and entertaining.
Xenoblade Chronicles 3D
Exclusive to the New Nintendo 3DS XL, Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is one of the best JRPGs available on the 3DS. Xenoblade Chronicles was originally released on Nintendo Wii back in 2012, and it was quickly revered as one of the best RPGs of that console generation. With the title now portable and available on 3DS, a whole new audience gets to experience one of the finest RPGs to see release in the last decade.
Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is a port of the Wii original, but is now in portable form. Offering players an exciting, addictive, and lengthy journey, this title is one of the more entertaining games available on the system. With a strong cast of characters, welcoming gameplay, and a massive open-world to explore, Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is a great pickup and play game as you can complete some small missions during your lunchbreak, save, and then startup right where you left off.
For those with a New Nintendo 3DS XL looking for an epic adventure, this game is for you.
Puzzle & Dragons Z + Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition
Puzzle games and portable gaming systems are the perfect match, and Puzzle & Dragons Z + Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition is the best puzzle game released for Nintendo 3DS in 2015. Offering up two unique puzzle games in one package, this title provides players with value and unlimited fun.
Puzzles & Dragons Z takes players on an RPG type adventure that has players’ combat foes via puzzles. In your mission to the save the world, you’ll recruit dragons and power-ups to overcome enemies. These match-three puzzle game is unlike anything you have ever played before.
The second game in the package is Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition. Still a match-three game, instead of embarking on a quest to save the world, you will navigate classic Mario Bros. stages, battle classic foes, and attempt to stop Bowser. This is a more lighthearted affair that Z, but remains a solid and highly entertaining puzzle game for 3DS owners.
The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes
While The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D may satisfy your epic 3D adventure cravings when it comes to a Zelda game, some may be looking for something captivating but a little more carefree. Welcome to The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes. This new Zelda game puts teamwork and fashion at the forefront to make for a refreshingly distinct Zelda game.
What makes this Zelda game so unique is how it emphasize team play over that of a solo adventure. Supporting up to three players, you can play with friends locally or hop online and team with a couple of strangers to accomplish the objective. Cooperation is key to success as you’ll need to work together to solve puzzles and overcome challenging bosses.
Fashion and style also play an important role in the game. You can outfit Link with ability-enhancing costumes prior to entering a dungeon. These outfits will give Link a boost in stats and have him looking fabulous. If you are looking for a fun Zelda adventure to play with friends and just enjoy in your leisure, The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes is the title for you.
Our last Nintendo 3DS gift recommendation is a newcomer to North America. After having made a name for itself in Japan and being declared the next Pokémon, the franchise has finally found its way to our market and it was well worth the wait. Yo-Kai Watch is an entertaining adventure game that has players recruit and battle Yo-Kai while exploring and completing missions.
At first glance the game shares many similarities to the Pokémon franchise: kid-friendly, highly addictive, battle creatures, recruit new Yo-kai to your team, and complete various missions. However, the game is much more than a simple Pokémon clone. It’s an entertaining adventure told with humor through its colorful cast of characters and unique Yo-Kai.
If you are a fan of Pokémon, the Yo-Kai Watch television show, or looking for a lighthearted and delightful portable adventure game, Yo-Kai Watch is exactly what you are looking for.
The Nintendo Wii U had one of its better years in terms of software releases, and one game took the world by surprise. You’re a kid now, you’re a squid now, and you’re hooked now. Splatoon isn’t just one of the Wii U’s best games, it is one of the best games of 2015.
This colorful third-person shooter is all about fun, and it succeeds in giving players buckets load of it. What makes Splatoon such a joy to play is that it is accessible to gamers of all skill levels. With a focus on shooting colored ink all over the world and not on killing your opponent, there is no wrong way to play Splatoon. Anyone and everyone can enjoy Splatoon regardless of age and experience.
Whether you are playing online or playing through the game’s single-player mode, hours of fun and enjoyment await. This is one game you certainly don’t want to miss out on.
Super Mario Maker
The holiday season is about making dreams come true, and there is no better way than with Super Mario Maker. Nintendo has passed the creation torch to the player with this title as we now have creative control to make the next great Super Mario Bros. game. With simple to use controls courtesy of the Wii U GamePad, Super Mario Maker lets gamers of all ages use their imagination and bring their vision to life with ease.
To quote ourselves: “Super Mario Maker makes level creation incredibly easy and accessible for gamers of all ages. The Wii U GamePad is the perfect tool for level creation thanks to the touchscreen. Whether you are an adult or child, Mario Maker is a stress-free experience to make levels and see your vision become reality. Super Mario Maker is a brilliant Mario game, and a game that Mario fans and those aspiring to be game creators must-play.”
This is one of the best games in the Wii U library and one of Examiner’s 2015 Games of the Year.
Yoshi’s Woolly World
Carefree, charming, delightful, and all-around fun. These few words perfectly capture what Yoshi’s Woolly World is all about. This charming Wii U game will melt your heart with its cute visuals, but its charming gameplay and enchanting worlds will keep you coming back for more.
Yoshi’s Woolly World is the best Yoshi title since Yoshi’s Island released on the SNES. With upbeat music, two player co-op, and a relaxed gameplay feel to it, Yoshi’s Woolly World is a title that parents can enjoy with their children without worry. The game welcomes you and allows you to progress through the game’s many levels with relative ease. Those looking for a challenge will also find that with this game as you’ll be hard-pressed to collect all the in-game collectibles.
Yoshi’s Woolly World is a gem and an excellent game for families to enjoy this holiday season.
Xenoblade Chronicles X
Xenoblade Chronicles X is an excellent Wii U RPG. Those looking for a long and larger-than-life adventure on Wii U needn’t look any further than this game.
We could list plenty of reasons as to why this game should be on your holiday shopping list, but it’s easier to just let our review do the talking for us.
“Xenoblade Chronicles X is a highly enjoyable game. The exploration, scale, and freedom the game delivers is unmatched by anything on the Wii U. It’s one of the Wii U’s best games and may be the Wii U’s best game for 2015. RPG fans will love what the game has to offer.”