They may be sinking in popularity with the rise of smartphone gaming, but I always throw a handheld gaming devices into my bag before going on a trip. The Nintendo 3DS is the best one on the market now. Since we’ve already looked at the best exclusive 3DS games, we thought it would be a fun exercise to head to the opposite end of the spectrum and look at the worst games on the platform.
To find these poorly received games, we surveyed all of the 3DS exclusives listed on Metacritic and created a composite score that factors in both the critic and user ratings. For example, a game with a 55 critic score and 5.3 user score would receive a 54 composite score. This should give us the clearest picture of how well the games were received between the time of release and now.
7. Power Rangers Super Megaforce
When Power Rangers first appeared in the early ‘90s, it didn’t seem like a show that would have staying power. It was cheaply made, using painfully bad monster costumes and an over-reliance on stock footage. Here we are over 20 years later, and Power Rangers is still going strong. That’s all well and good, but this game sure isn’t worth your time. A dreadfully bland brawler, Super Megaforce has you run through ugly levels, beating up on an endless series of enemies, and generally wishing you were doing anything else.
6. Gardening Mama 2: Forest Friends
You don’t need a green thumb needed to play this one. But even if you’re into gardening you should still avoid it. Forest Friends is a game that has you plant seeds and grow veggies, only to hand them off to anthropomorphized animals who come asking for them. The action happens in the 50 mini-games that have you do mind-numbing tasks like sorting fruit and collecting chestnuts. Few of the mini-games are fun, and they last so long you’ll get bored of the ones you might initially enjoy. Really, the whole thing feels like a pointless slog. You’d be better off working in a real garden, since then you’d have something to show for it.
5. Asphalt 3D
Racing games are supposed to be thrilling and intense as you skid around corners to outpace your opponents. Asphalt 3D doesn’t live up to even the most modest of expectations. A port of a mobile phone game, this sub-par title offers plenty of cars and upgrades, but fails to create a worthy racing experience at its core. It’s also riddled with bugs, so whether it’s a car appearing out of nowhere for a head-on collision or the stuttering opening cinematic, it’s clear this game wasn’t designed or optimized for this hardware.
4. Transformers: Dark of the Moon – Stealth Force Edition
Transformers fans will put up with a lot — just look at the quality of the recent movies — but not even the most hardcore fanatics should bother playing this awful cash-in. Everything about it, from the controls to the graphics to the repetitive missions, could have been done a thousand times better. Some bad games need more development time before being released. This one needed to be thrown in the garbage.
3. RollerCoaster Tycoon 3D
It sounds so appealing to create your own theme park, complete with rides, concession stands, and roller coasters of your own design. And it has been appealing in other games in the series. In this one, on the other hand, the developers have yanked out so many options and features that it hardly feels like a RollerCoaster Tycoon game at all. You can’t sculpt your park’s terrain or use water rides. You can’t send your coasters through tunnels or change their color. The result is a game that feels so limited that you can’t have much fun at all.
2. Power Rangers Megaforce
If you thought the sequel Power Rangers Super Megaforce was bad (see number 7), you should check out the first game in the series, because it’s even worse. Another brawler, Power Rangers Megaforce has you select a Ranger to play as while you pound the stuffing out of enemies. The enemies are all more or less the same, and the levels don’t do anything to delight or surprise you. Worse yet, the game is a buggy mess, freezing and crashing while you play. The best solution? Don’t play it.
1. Tenkai Knights: Brave Battle
And the winner (or loser, depending on how you look at it) for Worst Nintendo 3DS Game Released So Far goes to Tenkai Knights: Brave Battle, a game so loathsome that one review outlet actually gave it a score of zero. The game is based on an anime, but not even fans of t he show should consider buying it. With excruciatingly repetitive levels and some of the most boring combat ever programmed into a game, Tenkai Knights brings nothing new to the table, while failing to deliver even a modicum of enjoyment. Its greatest achievement is probably that it’s the worst-reviewed game in the whole Nintendo 3DS library.