Recommend some DS games?
March 31, 2010 6:48 PM   Subscribe

Can you recommend some Nintendo DS games for me? I love Animal Crossing and the Harvest Moon games.

Basically, I'm not great at video games and find games where you have to beat levels to progress really frustrating, b/c inevitably I get stuck. I enjoy games where there are goals or achievements within the game, but you can play how you want and don't have to worry about beating it.

I've also enjoyed the Professor Layton games, though get annoyed when I can't solve a puzzle and finish those too quickly--with Harvest Moon or Animal Crossing, I can play daily for months and not get bored.

I didn't like MySims Kingdom b/c it was too restrictive--you had to do certain things in a certain order and couldn't just hang out and make friends or whatever. And I find the Brain Age types of games to be tiresome quickly.

Are there any other DS games like these? I'm ready for something new!
posted by leesh to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (24 answers total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney is more a visual novel than a game really, but it's a lot of fun and I highly recommend it!
posted by EtzHadaat at 6:54 PM on March 31, 2010

Have you ever given Pokemon a shot? I know it may seem a bit juvenile, but the Pokemon series does bring a lot of replay video to their games. There is an overall objective, but you can spend as much time as you want exploring, catching Pokemon, training, battling, and much more. In order to progress in the story you do have to collect badges from gym leaders, etc. Which gives you access to more areas and secrets. Give it a shot!
posted by Junior687 at 6:55 PM on March 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords is fun in some of the same ways as the games you describe; there's a larger goal, but it doesn't really matter much, so if all you want to do is go around playing Bejeweled-y games (there's a spell-casting addition that makes it more interesting than Bejeweled), you can do that instead of worrying about finishing.
posted by charmedimsure at 6:59 PM on March 31, 2010

Seconding the Ace Attorney series, which is entertaining but very relaxed.
posted by bettafish at 7:01 PM on March 31, 2010

The Wario Ware games are packed with a bunch of microgames. As you play, these three-second-long games pop up with some basic instructions, then you play them. They're mostly very simple, and there's not really any pressure to win them all. (The pace is a little frantic, though.)
posted by ignignokt at 7:05 PM on March 31, 2010

For lots of little fun minigames with not much pressure, check out the Cooking Mama and WarioWare series. I thought of Pokemon too, but it might still be too RPG-grindy for your enjoyment. If you like tower-defense games at all, Ninjatown is fun, cute, and not too stress-inducing. And just on general principle I also recommend the fantastic Metroid Prime Pinball.
posted by RogerB at 7:07 PM on March 31, 2010

when you say the harvest moon games - are you including the rune factory games? if you aren't, you should be.

do you have a DS or a DSi (can you play gba games)?

gta: chinatown wars
dragon quest heros: rocket slime
chibi robo: park patrol
puzzle quest is definitely pick up and play fun
posted by nadawi at 7:10 PM on March 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

posted by radiosilents at 7:18 PM on March 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

I've recently got a DS. GTA Chinatown Wars perfectly fits your requirements of open-ended sandbox style play, and it's a really entertaining game in it's own right.

Be warned though, it's pretty violent and fairly tasteless in parts, not a kids' game at all.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 7:24 PM on March 31, 2010

Seconding the Pokémon games - they're super effective! I got into the series a year or two ago, and I am now a huge Pokémon nerd. The best part is that there's usually a whole lot more game after you beat the "story" part of the game, and you can just keep on playing and finding new stuff. (I have something like 180 hours logged on my first Pokémon game.) And you can save at any point, which is really convenient.

Even younger and cornier are the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon games - the gameplay is simple, and the plot and dialogue were obviously written for a grade-school audience, but I find them surprisingly absorbing. The titular mystery dungeons are randomly generated, and you have a list of missions to choose from, graded by difficulty. There are some things you have to do in order to progress in the story, but mostly you can choose whatever missions appeal to you and go at your own pace. And, like with the main Pokémon games, once you've beaten the main story, you can keep playing and finding new stuff.

on preview: I am utterly ashamed of myself for not knowing about Metroid Prime Pinball I mean it has two of my favorite things I am getting that like right now.
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:35 PM on March 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

Oh yeah, I have Scribblenauts and did enjoy it, but I think I like feeling immersed in a world more than the more episodic games--though I do like Bejeweled a lot and may have to check out Puzzle Quest! I'm not really into violence so GTA is probably not my thing. (One facet of HM and AC I enjoy is the cuteness.)

I have a DS Lite so can play GBA games.

I've had Pokemon recommended to me before--but which should I start with? There's like twenty different ones.
posted by leesh at 7:46 PM on March 31, 2010

Definitely Rune Factory, also try Magician's Quest: Mysterious Times.
posted by lilnublet at 7:52 PM on March 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

Nthing Phoenix Wright - there is an overarching storyline, but you can also spend time exploring crime scenes and talking to witnesses.

And this is sort of dumb, but maybe Nintendogs or one of the million spin-offs? It's oddly satisfying to walk and feed and wash your dogs each day, and you can take them through agility training and such.
posted by sarahsynonymous at 7:53 PM on March 31, 2010

Oh my gosh, Magician's Quest sounds PERFECT.

With Rune factory--do you have to fight and stuff, or can you just farm and make friends?
posted by leesh at 7:56 PM on March 31, 2010

I've had Pokemon recommended to me before--but which should I start with? There's like twenty different ones.

Pick up HeartGold or SoulSilver that just came out. They're remakes of the second generation of games, my personal favorites. I feel like 1st gen -> 2nd gen has been the greatest leap in the games so far. Added all sorts of great stuff, but only added 100 more Pokemon. The current generations have something like 450 Pokemon; that is just way too much, man! They're not even unique anymore.

So yeah, definitely pick up HeartGold or SoulSilver. Have a blast! And remember, if you get stuck at a Gym Leader, just goof off and catch different Pokemon and grind levels for a bit. There's always more to do in Pokemon!
posted by InsanePenguin at 8:01 PM on March 31, 2010

I've had Pokemon recommended to me before--but which should I start with? There's like twenty different ones.

Any of them, really! The great (or tiring, depending on your perspective) thing about it is that they're all very similar games, but in different locations and with different characters and Pokémon.

One thing to note is that there are so far four "generations" of Pokémon games, and each generation has two or three very-slightly-different versions of the same game, and you only need to play one of each generation. (Usually the only differences between same-generation versions is that one version will have a couple Pokémon you can't get in the other version. Other than that, exact same game.) The games available for DS or GBA (if your DS has a GBA slot available) are:

Generation I (GBA): FireRed, LeafGreen (these are remakes of the original Pokémon Red/Blue/Yellow for the original Game Boy)
Generation II (DS): HeartGold, SoulSilver - these are remakes of Pokémon Gold/Silver for Game Boy Color. These remakes were just released a couple weeks ago.
Generation III (GBA): Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald
Generation IV (DS): Diamond, Pearl, Platinum

There is a Generation V expected to be released in late 2010/early 2011.

HeartGold/SoulSilver might be a good first choice since it's the newest release, but any of the generations would be a fine introduction. If there's a Pokémon you think is really cute and have to have, you might want to start with whatever generation it's in - Squirtle can only be found in Gen I games, but if you like Mudkips you'll want Gen III.

(See, I told you I was a huge Pokémon nerd.)
posted by Metroid Baby at 8:06 PM on March 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

Atelier Annie is so addictive. Just skip the dialogue. Oh god, please spare your brain and skip the dialogue.
posted by a sourceless light at 8:53 PM on March 31, 2010

In Rune Factory you do have to fight and stuff to unlock new places to farm... BUT it happens very slowly and I don't remember any of the fights being any kind of difficult. I suppose if you didnt want to fight, you wouldn't have to but you wouldn't get any animals (which are tamed "monsters" from the dungeon) and the story won't progress. There may be villagers that won't show up until certain conditions are met too depending on the version, I think.

BUT here are more great things about RF! When you expand your house you get to put in a forge and workshop and lab to make your own weapons and accessories and potions in addition to your big kitchen. It's pretty much the best game ever if you're the kind of HM nerd who loves to make stuff (that's me). Also, the farming part is just as awesome if not MORE awesome than HM since there are perma-season garden plots (eg always summer). Although be warned, the ranching aspect seems almost like an afterthought. It's also visually gorgeous (except for everyone's freakishly long arms). (ps: not the platform you want but rune factory for the wii is even PRETTIER and has a bazzilion things to do its ridiculous).
posted by lilnublet at 9:59 PM on March 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

It's a rhythm music game but you might like Elite Beat Agents.

Do NOT get Hotel Dusk unless you like "interactive novels," because it's heavy on the reading and light on the action.
posted by IndigoRain at 10:00 PM on March 31, 2010

Rhythm Heaven. Very addicting game with lots of rhythm/music based puzzles.
posted by Plug1 at 11:55 PM on March 31, 2010

lilnublet : you are not kidding about the wii version. i've just passed 50 hours and i'm still in the first year!
posted by nadawi at 12:03 AM on April 1, 2010

Thanks for all the suggestions! My birthday is coming up next week and I'll definitely get a couple of these and report back.

(And my reluctance to fight in the RF games isn't b/c I'm squeamish or anything, it's just that I'm bad at video game fighting.)
posted by leesh at 5:32 AM on April 1, 2010

I recommend Lost in Blue and/or Lost in Blue 2. Basically, you're shipwrecked and must hunt/gather/build/explore to survive. Personally I like the second game better due to gameplay improvements -- the first one was a little buggy (although still awesome, which says something).

There's also a Lost in Blue 3, which I have not played.
posted by somanyamys at 7:22 AM on April 1, 2010

the fighting in RF is very original zelda(on the NES)-esque. i am also terrible at killing stuff in games, but i haven't had much trouble in the rune factory games.
posted by nadawi at 11:10 AM on April 1, 2010

« Older We made it to Portland with the baby - now what?   |   Good documentaries about South America in Spanish? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.