10 Best 3DS Games for Kids Reviewed in 2019

The Nintendo 3DS took the world by storm in 2011, and children have been enjoying it ever since. Users love the longer battery life, ease of use, and most importantly the 3D top screen. Parents love how Nintendo designs the games to be kid and family friendly. Allowing your child to play videogames, in moderation of course, will increase their social skills, hand-eye coordination, and concentration skills. Keep reading to see our list of the ten best 3DS games on the market. All of the games on our list are not only appropriate for all ages but they are also highly entertaining.

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By Justina Fuller:

With new games constantly being released, we recently updated this list to ensure that all products were in stock. Furthermore, we made sure that all of the games on our list are appropriate for children of all ages.

Our Top 3 Picks

Super Smash Bros.
  • Super Smash Bros.
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Nintendo's Greatest Heroes
  • Price: See Here
Disney Magical World
  • Disney Magical World
  • 4.3 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Over 60 Disney Character
  • Price: See Here
LoZ A Link Between Worlds
  • LoZ A Link Between Worlds
  • 4.3 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Encourages Critical Thinking
  • Price: See Here

Criteria Used in Evaluation of the Best 3DS Games

We know it may take some time for you to fully be comfortable with the idea of your child spending time playing video games. To provide you with a little more reassurance, when we created this list we considered three main categories. Your child’s safety, development, and the actual features of the Nintendo 3DS were all very important to us.

Safety

With your child’s safety being our top priority we took several factors into consideration. Many of the choices on the list do allow children to play online. We know this feature scares many parents, but there are ways to keep it under control. First, we strongly recommend keeping an eye on your child while they are playing online with strangers. Keeping the console or making them play in a central area in the house will make it easier for you to do this. You can also add parental controls to help regulate who they are playing with. When your child creates a Gamertag, never allow them to use their real name. Be mindful of the Gamertags of the other people they are playing with. Some names will be obviously inappropriate. We also strongly recommend looking at the rating on each of them. A game that is rated M for mature audiences is not appropriate for a child. These ratings are meant to protect your children from things like nudity and violence. All of the games on our list are rated E for everyone so you will be able to relax while your child enjoys their game.

Appropriate for Development

When creating this list, we made sure each game stimulated at least one area of development for your child. With this console, your child will increase their coordination. The brightly colored graphics and an upbeat soundtrack will increase your child’s sensory development. The majority of the choices on the list will increase their problem-solving skills, as your child will have to think about ways to beat each level. Allowing your child to play with friends, or playing with your child will increase their social skills. Games with multiplayer modes will encourage social play.

Features of the Nintendo 3DS

While the list is composed of the best video games, we thought it would be important to also take a look at the device your child will be playing on. The Nintendo 3DS allows your child to play in 3D without special glasses. While this does appeal to your child’s spatial awareness, the 3D mode can be switched to 2D mode at any time and can be locked with a parental PIN number.

The 3DS is equipped with an activity log which records what your child plays and for how long. This feature goes hand in hand with the safety aspect and is great for allowing parents to keep a watchful eye. It does include a messaging system to allow players to talk to each other. Don’t let this feature turn you off from the device. Players can only message each other once they exchange an identification code with each other. Parents can regulate this by being in control of the code and who it is given to. The screen is bigger than the screens on past devices, making it less of a strain for your child’s eyes. The battery life only lasts three to five hours, which makes it easier for you to regulate how much time your child spends on the device.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How will I know which games are appropriate for my child?

A: On the front of every video game is a white box with a bold black letter inside. These letters serve as ratings. EC stands for early childhood. E means the game is rated for everyone. E+10 is rated for children over 10 years of age. If the game is rated T, it is for teens. M is for mature audiences age 17 and older. A is rated for adults only 18+.

Q: What makes a game rated E for everyone?

A: When rated E, the material in the game is appropriate for all ages. There may be a small amount of mild violence included. The game may also have infrequent use of mild language. If it is rated E+10, then the content is suitable for ages 10 and up because it contains more mild violence, language and or suggestive themes.

Q: I don’t want my child playing on it 24/7. What should I do?

A: While there are many benefits to gaming, moderation is important. We suggest setting times for your child to play. Something like once they finish their homework they can play for two hours.

Q: How many hours a day should I let my child play?

A: It is recommended that your child only play video games one to three hours a day.

Q: How do I make sure my child won’t be playing inappropriate games at friends’ houses?

A: The answer to this is tricky. We suggest being honest with the parents but put the emphasis on your child. You don’t want to make the other parents feel like bad parents for letting their child play a video game you deem inappropriate. Just explain that you don’t think your child is ready to be playing a game that involves stealing cars, shooting people, or whatever the case may be.

Q: Will video games make my child violent?

A: This is a common concern. There have been countless studies on this topic, and no concrete evidence has been provided to suggest that video games make children violent. By paying attention to the rating, you can prevent your child from playing violent video games.

Sources

  1. Assc. for Psychological Science, Toddlers and Touchscreens: A Science in Development, Online Publication,
  2. Jordan Shapiro, A Surprising New Study On How Video Games Impact Children, Online Article,
  3. Entertainment Softward Rating Board, ESRB Ratings Guide, Ratings Guide,
  4. Dan O'Halloran , Is the Nintendo 3DS right for your child?, Online News Article,
  5. editors of Parenting.com , Video Game Safety Check, Online Article,