The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid

We've played 14 of the sixteen available in stores this weekend when the 3DS comes out in North America. Four of them are worth buying. The rest? Read on to see.

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid


Asphalt 3D
The 3D here is relatively nice, but the graphics seem sub-par compared to other 3DS games. There's just not enough new, different, or beautiful here to warrant picking this up.
Don't Buy It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid


Bust-A-Move Universe
This barebones Bust-A-Move (Puzzle Bobble) game does little to stand out from its cute-dinosaurs-popping-rainbow-colored-bubbles predecessors. This is a stripped-down Bust-A-Move with inoffensive 3D visuals, but no Wi-fi support and no multiplayer. Universe only distinguishes itself by being the cheapest 3DS launch title.
Don't Buy It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid


Ghost Recon Shadow Wars
This excellent turn-based strategy game is more than a little reminiscent of the best of games like X-COM. The only 3DS feature it makes use of is 3D, but you'll never notice that any other tech is missing with the deep campaign, skirmish mode and pass-and-play multiplayer.
Buy It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid


LEGO Star Wars III
While there's not much here to separate it from the version of the game playable on other systems, it's still a wonderful action game with plenty of depth and replayability. I'm just not sure that with so many choices, this would be the platform I'd choose to play this game on.
Rent It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid


Madden Football
We didn't play this one much but can assure you it's a full sim of NFL football. Single-player only. We can also make a safe bet that, as good as the field looks in 3D, the odds are strong that EA will have a new Madden for this system when it launches Madden NFL 12 in the summer. Can you wait?
Rent It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid


Nintendogs + Cats
While Nintendogs + Cats does come with a few new features, and a redesigned interface, it isn't really enough to warrant a purchase unless you're really</em into that sort of thing.
Don't Buy It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid
Pilotwings Resort
You'll be flying a plane, jetpack, hang-glider or other mystery vehicles through hoops, over an island and sometimes into a volcano, getting more points for skilled stunt-flying. No multiplayer, but nice graphics, good Nintendo surprises and decent 3D.
Buy It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid
Rayman 3D
While Rayman 3D makes good use of the 3D abilities of the 3DS, this platformer is a very straight-forward remake of 1999's Rayman 2, meaning there is very little reason to pick it up unless you missed it when it was on the Playstation 2 and Nintendo 64 or you're looking to play something only remotely like a Mario title.
Don't Buy It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid
Ridge Racer
A fast though not graphically amazing new Ridge Racer with impressive 3D effects but nothing in terms of racing design to set it ahead of the many other portable racing games available on mobile platforms these days. Supports four-player local wireless racing, if each player has the game.
Rent It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid
Samurai Warriors Chronicles
Samurai Warriors Chronicles is a solid 3D crowd-brawler set in 16th century Japan, though be warned that it's the same kind of Dynasty Warriors game that's only ever been a niche taste in the U.S.. Chronicles is the kind of console-style game you'd have expected on the PSP, full of cut-scenes and voice-over that help set up the game's big-map battles. You juggle control of multiple characters in the fights, leveling them up as you go.
Rent It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid
The Sims 3
This is one of the least attractive games of the 3DS' launch line-up. It also seems a bit buggy, with character customization, like hair, changing of its own free will.
Don't Buy It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid
Steel Diver
First of all, you probably don't have a tactical side-scrolling submarine game already, and that's a must. Second, you can spin around in a chair and pretend the 3DS is a periscope while you torpedo ships. What else is a gyro sensor for?
Buy It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid
Super Monkey Ball 3D
There's not a whole lot new here, though you can play the game in 3D and you can also play it with the 3DS' motion-sensing tilt controls. Just don't try to do both at the same time or you won't be able to see what's going on at all.
Don't Buy It

The 3DS Launch Games To Buy, Borrow or Avoid
Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition
This isn't just a very playable version of the fighter you've already gamed with on consoles, portables and even a phone, it's also packed with a few new neat features. 3D mode, adds depth and a new perspective, while StreetPass lets you battle other players with collectible figures.
Buy It