The 3DS promises immersive 3D gameplay. How many of its games actually deliver? Here's my pick of five great eShop games titles.
As with the previous PSN, Steam, Wii U eShop and XBLA roundups, these are all download-only titles, although it's always possible to pick up Nintendo's physical titles as download copies as well. I don't exclude or include titles on the basis of exclusivity, either. Comments, thoughts and criticism welcome below!
For all that the 3DS' 3D powers are often used for purely gimmicky purposes, there are some titles that make good use of its stereoscopic display. Pullblox (Pushmo elsewhere on the planet) is one of them, because while its simple yet mindbending puzzle antics could work on a standard screen, once you give them virtual depth, they become that much more intriguing. The sequel, Fallblox is also well worth checking out. My only criticism of Pullblox? I'm not a big fan of how game hero Mallo throws the kids in the air when he's done. You're on top of a tall stack of blocks, Mallo. Somebody could get hurt!
Mighty Switch Force
One part anime cartoon, one part action puzzler. In many ways, Mighty Switch Force uses the same core gaming dynamic -- switching backgrounds to create platforms for progress as PullBlox, but where that's a pure puzzle play, this is mostly platform action tied to a rapidly increasing clock and that ever-present desire to beat your best times.
Zen Pinball 3D
Zen Studios know the exact way into my wallet. It's quite simple, really; all they've got to do is release Zen Pinball for every single system I own, and like a puppy with a chew toy, I'll obediently follow along, happily playing Pinball as I go. It doesn't have the variety of tables that its "bigger" Zen Pinball brothers do, but the 3D effect works well, and it's Pinball on the go. If you hadn't guessed, I'm a bit of a sucker for Pinball games.
Escape Vektor is... well, it's like Amidar and Tron got really drunk, got together in a hotel room for a half hour, emerged sweaty and grinning, and nine months later, Escape Vektor emerged, fully formed and delightfully addictive. The gaming mechanic is as old as gaming itself, but it's superbly paced, wittily written and highly compulsive.
The Legend Of Zelda: Choose Your Own Suffix
There'll always be room for a Zelda re-release on my 3DS. What do you mean, I've got to pick one?
That's cruel and unusual punishment! If I've got to pick, it'd be Oracle of Seasons, but only because I'm playing through it right now. In real terms, though, I'll be back in Oracle Of Ages… or Link's Awakening… any time now. Or sooner. Again, you can get deeper experiences with, say, Ocarina Of Time or (hopefully) the upcoming Link Between Worlds titles, but the simple purity of the virtual console titles still shine through after many years.