The Zelda series returns to its roots on 3DS, but uses the opportunity to introduce some fascinating new ideas. Classic gameplay, infused with fresh concepts and graced with stellar graphics and sound, make A Link Between Worlds one of the best games in the Zelda series and a must-own title this holiday.
Super Smash Bros for Wii U fixes everything disappointing about its predecessor and is a phenomenal game in its own right. While I miss the Subspace Emissary story mode and the Amiibo feel a little underused, the rest of the game is exploding with content and the core mechanics are near-perfect. Get this game at the earliest opportunity and gather your friends—Smash Bros on Wii U is now the undisputed king of party games.
Super Mario 3D World takes the excellent gameplay from its 3DS predecessor and expands upon it with 4-player co-op, new gameplay and even more creative levels. Mario's first 3D, HD adventure is bar none the best game on Wii U right now and the console's undisputed killer app. Whether played solo or with friends, it is a master class of platformer design and more importantly, one hell of a good time.
Ten years later, Twilight Princess is still a tale masterfully told and designed. The gameplay and story hold up remarkably well, and the HD visuals, updated textures, and a handful of improved mechanics make the HD version the definitive edition of the game. In a word, it is a masterpiece, then and now.
Smash Bros for 3DS is a solid polish of everything that made Brawl great, but faster, tighter and with even more content. The new fighters and levels are excellent, the online play is smoother and more stable, and best of all, you can take the experience anywhere. Get ready to start the addiction all over again, because now you can carry it around in your pocket.
Endlessly stylish, emotionally gripping and deceptively addictive, VA-11 HALL-A is the pure essence of a visual novel: a digital page-turner filled with unforgettable characters and set in an infectious cyberpunk noir that will live in your head for weeks after you've put the game down.
MercurySteam have pulled Samus from the jaws of death and delivered one of the best games in the series. Samus Returns perfects and reimagines the gameplay of 2D Metroid games and delivers one of the best titles on the 3DS. Every self-respecting Nintendo fan should own Metroid: Samus Returns.
The Witcher 3 today is just as much a master class in game and story design as it was four years ago. Feral Interactive did an impressive job porting this gigantic RPG to Switch.
Like hidden treasure, Captain Toad Treasure Tracker packs a lot of value into an unassuming package. With a supremely addictive set of charming, brain-teasing levels, stellar production values and a budget price, Captain Toad is the perfect way for Wii U owners to wrap up 2014 after indulging in Smash Bros.
Hyrule Warriors is a different kind of Zelda game. That doesn't mean it's any less fun. Amazing production values, addictive gameplay, a rich story and an overall sense of extreme quality, polish and confidence make Hyrule Warriors much more than a mere spinoff.