6 niche Nintendo 3DS games to check out before the eShop closes

Check out these niche 3DS titles before they’re gone or skyrocket in price.

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Nintendo is controversially closing up the 3DS and Wii U eShop in March of next year, but the company will remove the ability to add funds to your account completely starting this August. While the Wii U had a great library of first-party games and Virtual Console titles, most of the notable games on the platform ended up with Switch ports. 

Meanwhile, the 3DS has a slew of great original software that will be lost following the closure of its digital front. There are also games exclusive to the 3DS that are delisted and only available in physical form. As time progresses, those titles will likely become incredibly hard to find without paying a costly investment. With that in mind, here are some of those games that you might want to look into and pick up while you still can. 

BoxBoy Trilogy 

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It would be remiss to not mention BoxBoy, one of the most notable digital-only releases on the 3DS and its two sequels BoxBoxBoy and Bye-Bye BoxBoy. The series was popular enough that it got an amiibo released exclusively to Japan. Despite this, it feels like many people don’t know about this charming puzzle platforming franchise to the point where there’s another entry that released on the Switch called BoxBoy + BoxGirl. You can purchase all three of the BoxBoy games on the eShop for $4.99. 

Crimson Shroud 

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Crimson Shroud is a short but unique tabletop-inspired JRPG from Level 5 studio. The battlefield is reminiscent of a dungeon and dragons game, using models as the characters and rolling dice to execute your actions. The story is told similarly to a D&D session, and the game received positive reviews. 

Level 5 has a number of digital-only titles that 3DS enthusiasts recommend, including Liberation Maiden, Weapon Shop de Omasse, and Attack of the Friday Monsters! A Tokyo Tale, all of which you can pick up for $7.99 a pop on the eShop. 

Dillon’s Rolling Western Trilogy 

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Throughout the lifespan of the 3DS, Nintendo released Dillon’s Rolling Western Trilogy, a 3D adventure game that consists of exploration, tower defense, and arena combat as Dillon the armadillo. The trilogy consists of Dillon’s Rolling Western, Dillon’s Rolling Western: The Last Ranger, and Dillon’s Dead-Heat Breakers, which were released only on digital storefronts (at least in North America territories), so until they are ported to the Switch, it’ll be gone when it’s gone. Each title is sold separately in the shop for $9.99, $10.99, and $39.99, respectively. 

Pocket Card Jockey 

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This is one of those rare times where we get a game from Game Freak that isn’t Pokemon. Blending a mixture of both horse racing and solitaire, Pocket Card Jockey makes for a relatively simplistic but engaging card game. The more cards you clear out and get solitaire, the more energy your horse will be given, helping you win the race. Surprisingly, Pocket Card Jockey has yet to be ported to the Nintendo Switch despite its cult following and is a digital-only title. Those interested can pick it up for a mere $6.99.

Project X Zone 1 + 2 

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Project X Zone is a strategic RPG crossover using Bandai Namco, Capcom, and Sega characters from their iconic franchises. It was a pretty significant collaboration that was successful enough to get a sequel that added Nintendo into the mix with Fire Emblem characters added to the mix. Both games reviewed pretty well, but the reason why you might want to look into these titles before the shop closes is that they’re both delisted — once the entire eShop closes up, the physical versions of Project X Zone will likely go up in price. 

The first game is already pricey, with a new copy selling for well over $100 in the aftermarket, while the sequel is still around $60. 

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner Soul Hackers 

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Outside of Shin Megami Tensei and Persona, Atlus’s JRPGs are a lot less well-known in an already niche genre, but Devil Summoner Soul Hackers may be something you want to look into, especially since its follow up title Devil Summoner 2 is releasing in August later this year. The game originally released back in 1997 on the Sega Saturn, but it eventually made its way out west in 2012 as a remake on 3DS. Soul Hackers is also the second entry in the Devil Summoner series; the original never released outside of Japan. 

Thankfully, Devil Summoner Soul Hackers is a standalone title, despite it being in the same series. But if you love JRPGs, it is definitely something worth looking into. It is available on the 3DS eShop for $19.99, but if you’re looking for a physical copy, expect to pay much more. The game is no longer sold at retail, and aftermarkets have it selling on average for $90.