Nintendo DS: The Quiet Champion
Remember when Nintendo announced the newest version of their Gameboy? The Nintendo DS broke boundaries with its controversial dual-screen technology. Looking back, I remember seeing countless threads using the words “Virtual Boy DS” as a slam towards Nintendo’s upcoming hand-held. I imagine threads such as those are printed out, used as decorations for the Nintendo offices like the severed heads of defeated enemies. There is absolutely no doubt about it, the Nintendo DS has sold an amazing amount of hardware and software, and quietly continues to absolutely dominate the gaming Market. Nintendo, you can feel free to take your victory lap.
So what is it? For those of us currently “DS-less”, we have to ponder the unnatural success of this dual-screened enigma. So, if we were to buy one of these systems, what games should we be on the look out for? Let’s take a look at the most popular games for the DS after which maybe we can ascertain the true nature of this phenomenon.
Check the list below:
Elite Beat Agents
Average Review: 87%
Elite Beat Agents is a curious rhythm game, full of quirky Japanese animation. It’s basically Dance Dance Revolution for your stylus. Elite Beat Agents is a casual mix of tongue-in-cheek anime humor with insanely addicting gameplay.
Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow
Average Review: 90%
What else is there to say? The last few iterations of the Castlevania have been excellent. Dawn of Sorrow takes the “Aria of Sorrow” gameplay one step further. For a game that was basically a 2D-beat-um-up in it’s origins, the Castlevania series is really making a name for itself as a true RPG experience.
Average Review: 85%
You thought Pokemon would fade quietly into that dark night? According to the breakout success of this recent version in the series, that seems to not be the case. There’s just something primal about catching something and making it fight something else that just refuses to get old. It seems for as long as there is a Gameboy, there will be a Pokemon.
NEW Super Mario Bros.
Average Review: 89%
As the first classic 2D Mario game since Super Mario World for the SNES, the New Super Mario Bros. had its work cut out for it. Luckily for us, they seem to have knocked this one out of the park. With 3D graphics that enhance the 2D experience rather than override it, this version of the Mario series is rendered beautifully. New Mario games are a staple of the Gameboy legacy, and it’s good to see that the legend will continue for some time to come.
Average Review: 84%
Nintendo never ceases to amaze. They can take the most obscure idea, and turn it into something tangible. I would have loved to be in the board meeting when this game was introduced. I’m not sure how they sold “Dog feeding simulator” as a viable project, but it’s a good thing they pulled it off. Nintendogs is just plain fun, just be careful not to be seen saying things like, “Whooz a good lil puppywuppy! YOU ARE! Oh sucha good puppies!” into your DS. Well, at least not in public.
That’s just a sampling. I believe the true power of the DS comes in its standard of quality. From Mario Kart DS to Brain Age, you can almost be sure that whatever game you pick up off the shelf will hold your attention for days and weeks to come. Is the quality of the game library responsible for the DS’s unending success? It’s hard to know for sure.