Despite having high hopes, these portable games left us wanting more.
Over the past several months, we've played some real gems for Nintendo's 3DS, from the recently released New Super Mario Bros. 2 to Kid Icarus: Uprising. Other games, unfortunately, fell short of personal expectations. On that note, we listed the most disappointing 3DS titles.
Tekken 3D Prime Edition
Taken for what it is, Namco Bandai's Tekken 3D Prime Edition is an impressive portable brawler with over 40 characters, online play and 60 frames-per-second animation; the game even comes with an animated Tekken film. On the downside, all of the characters are available from the start, and there's no story mode to speak of, which strips the game of some much-needed personality. Not a bad title by any means, but more of a lifeless one.
Heroes of Ruin
After months of waiting, hopes were high that Square Enix would deliver a feature-packed dungeon crawler to 3DS, and in some ways, the publisher succeeded. Players can choose from different character classes, fight a variety of foes, pick up thousands of items and even enjoy four-person co-op. It sounds like a great experience, but numerous bugs, complaints about length and easy difficulty have made Heroes of Ruin feel overpriced and sloppy when compared to hack-and-slash games on iOS, namely ORC: Vengeance and Eternity Warriors 2. A patch could go a long way to improving this game, but it remains to be seen if we'll ever get one.
After years of mediocrity, Sonic the Hedgehog made a welcome return to form in last year's Sonic Generations for Xbox 360 and PS3. Then we have the 3DS version. Although it retains the classic and modern Sonic formula of its console counterpart, levels are nowhere near as interesting, boss fights are tedious and the game is much too short. Considering Sega's respectable work on the GBA and DS Sonic titles, this one's a step backwards.
Pokemon Rumble Blast
We should've known better, but the tantalizing thought of playing the first Pokemon game on 3DS was too great to ignore. So, was Pokemon Rumble Blast worth the wait? No, not even close. Instead of relying on the same tried and true RPG mechanics from the franchise's best-sellers, Nintendo went with a simplistic and fairly shallow beat-em-up that feels more like a $0.99 iPhone game. And the wait for a better Pokemon continues.
Doctor Lautrec and the Forgotten Knights
To be fair, Konami's Professor Layton-inspired adventure flew under the radar, for the most part. We just crossed our fingers and hoped Doctor Lautrec would tide us over until The Miracle Mask arrived. Nope. Although Konami deserves praise for the cut scenes and art style, simplistic puzzles, excessive box pushing and other laborious elements make Forgotten Knights feel like a chore.
Despite receiving some positive reviews, there's no question that Steel Diver came up short, simply in lieu of it being a first party launch game from Nintendo. Instead of taking the time to do the 3DS proud, the big N took a DS submarine game and shoehorned 3D graphics onto it. The result was a shallow title that provides some cool effects (gyroscope support), but didn't achieve triple A status.
Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell 3D
If there were video game police, Ubisoft would probably get arrested for being a public nuisance. The company flooded the 3DS launch with a handful of stinkers, and Splinter Cell 3D was one of the biggest duds. What we received was a watered-down port of the critically acclaimed Splinter: Cell Chaos Theory, but without the multiplayer modes and auto save system. Not even the stylish visual cues from Splinter Cell: Conviction could save it. A shame, since there was potential.
Dream Trigger 3D
At first glance, Dream Trigger 3D appeared to offer a Rez like experience on 3DS, with swarms of enemies and players zapping the suckers to the beat of some whacked out music. So much for that idea. This title was a big letdown, as players hopelessly searched for critters with sonar while staring at some of the worst graphics we've seen on 3DS. Not worth a purchase, even at a discounted price.
Electronic Arts' pigskin franchise hit a new low with the abysmal 3DS version. On the positive side, it plays an OK game of football. Just don't expect multiplayer, or a franchise mode, or smart computer opponents or even stat tracking for Season mode. It's the epitome of minimalism, to the point that we still cannot believe EA had the nerve to shove this in our faces after releasing a feature packed iPhone and iPad Madden less than a year before.
Transformers: Dark of the Moon- Stealth Force Edition
We have to give Activision credit for righting the ship when it comes to Transformers games, at least when it comes to Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, where players blast robots to pieces as their favorite heroes and villains while enjoying plenty of eye candy. Then we have this 3DS abomination. Rather than create a thrilling third-person shooter featuring epic transformations and combat, the publisher elected to design a game where gamers can't transform whatsoever. It's 100 percent vehicle based, ala Twisted Metal, where instead of taking Optimus Prime from truck to robot and back, you only control the big rig. Not sure who made that decision, or whether it was the result of not spending enough time with the 3DS hardware. Regardless, it is without question one of the worst Transformers games in history.