The best Nintendo DS video games offer everything from dancing secret agents to adventuring plumbers to cute and cuddly dogs. Nintendo DS video games provide a unique playing experience thanks to the handheld's split-screen design with touch-screen capabilities, and some of the best titles make the most of these options, while others stick to traditional gameplay.
1. New Super Mario Bros.
Enjoy classic Mario side-scrolling action.
New Super Mario Bros. is the highest-rated game at GameSpy with a perfect 5/5 stars. It also earns a 9.0 from GameSpot. This is a sure hit for old-school Mario fans.
2. Elite Beat Agents
Tap your stylus to the beat to help the Elite Beat Agents save the day. Think of it as Dance Dance Revolution for your fingers.
Elite Beat Agents is the best Nintendo DS video game according to IGN.com. Its score of 9.5 puts it more than half a point ahead of its nearest competitor. It's also in the top ten on GameSpot and received 4.5 stars at GameSpy. It's noted for its unique style and infectious fun.
Available in Labrador Retriever & Friends, Dalmatian & Friends, Dachshund & Friends, and Chihuahua & Friends versions, these games charge you with a care and feeding of a virtual canine.
Recommended for dog lovers of all ages, enjoy fun and games with an engaging and trainable animal friend. Labrador, Dachsund, and Chihuahua versions earned a 9.1 from GameSpot, while Dalmatian seemed to lose points only because it didn't offer anything new over previous versions. Dalmatian & Friends is the second-highest-rated game on IGN.com's list.
4. Clubhouse Games
Video games and traditional pastimes collide. Play digitized versions of your favorite card, word, and board games.
All your favorites are here, from checkers to Texas Hold 'Em to a word balloon game that looks suspiciously like "Hangman." Clubhouse Games uses the wireless capabilities of the system more than many other Nintendo DS video games, adding interactive value to the title. It earned 4.5 stars on GameSpy.
5. Yoshi's Island DS
Offering bright visuals and a fun platform style.
Yoshi's Island DS offers more of what players loved in the original Yoshi's Island. The game earned a 9.1 from GameSpot, an 8.0 from IGN.com, and 4 stars from GameSpy.
6. Final Fantasy III
Classic role-playing action from a monumental video game franchise.
Previously unreleased in North America, Final Fantasy III updates a 1980s game for the Nintendo DS. Devoted fans of the series are already playing the game, and don't need to read this recommendation. It earned 4 stars from GameSpy.
7. Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam
A sports game from the master of skateboarding action.
Focusing more on racing than tricks compared to many other Tony Hawk titles, Downhill Jam may not be exactly what you're expecting, but it's still hours of fun. The game earned an 8.7 on IGN.com and 4 stars on GameSpy.
8. Mario Kart DS
Old-fashioned Mario racing with Wi-Fi capabilities.
Choose your favorite Nintendo character, and participate in a series of races with high speeds and aggressive competitors, although their attacks are more silly than deadly. Battle against up to seven other players without buying another copy of the game. With a 9.2, Mario Kart DS is one of the top two highest-rated games on GameSpot.
9. Advance Wars: Dual Strike
The popular series of strategy games comes to the Nintendo DS.
With turn-based strategy and engaging warfare, this game is perfectly suited to the Wi-Fi multiplayer abilities of the DS. Earning a 9.2 from GameSpot, it ties for first in its list of highest-rated Nintendo DS video games.
Price: Out of print - available used for various prices
10. Metroid Prime: Hunters
A first-person shooter with an intergalactic setting.
Samus Aran is back in the latest incarnation of the Metroid series. In addition to the main campaign, players can also take advantage of online play. Metroid Prime: Hunters earned 4.5 stars on GameSpy and an 8.6 on GameSpot.