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Mechanical Challenge Games on Nintendo 2DS|3DS

Games offer us challenges on many levels. When someone plays a game too much it’s easy to think they are taking an easy route to something entertaining, like junk food. But video games are generally hard work. It takes time to understand their systems, mechanics, objectives and worlds.

There are a small group of games that hone this challenge down to the mechanics of moving around the environment. Whereas many games simplify getting around, these games make the complexity and depth of their movement systems part of the joy of playing them.

Rather than relying on the stats of your character or player, you have to execute the moves yourself with timing proficiency and instinct. Rather than offering assistance, these games leave you to it. Whether you rise through the league tables, or just improve compared to your family, the satisfaction or getting to grips with something so monumentally challenging is really satisfying.

This might be understanding how the propulsion of your car lets you take to the air and hit a perfect shot in Rocket League. Or, perhaps, it’s using the limited running and jumping slightly better than other players to get a win in Fall Guys. Maybe it’s learning the perfect combination of angles and trajectories in Videoball. Or it could be learning the complex move lists in a game like Street Fighter.

These games all have in common, a complex control system that can be put to use in imaginative and creative ways to get the edge over your opponents.

This list includes 6 games from the last 41 years, with 27 likes. They come from a range of different genres and play-styles and are all good games if you want to combine dexterity and instincts.

DetailsPlatform Details

PEGI Ratings: PEGI 3 to PEGI 12
ESRB Ratings: ESRB EVERYONE to ESRB EVERYONE 10+
Australian Ratings: G to PG
Genres: Action, Adventure, Narrative, Physically Active, Platform, Puzzle and Rhythm
Era: 1981 - 2021
Total Games: 6
Total Likes: 27
 

 

Super Monkey Ball (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Release Date: 23/06/2001, updated in 2021

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, Android, DS, PS Vita, PS4, PS5, Switch, Wii, Xbox, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Genres: Physically Active, Platform and Puzzle

Developer: Super Monkey Ball (@SuperMonkeyBall)

Players: You can play with 1 to 4 players in the same room

Super Monkey Ball is a rolling and balancing game where you tilt platforms to control the path of a hamster ball containing a monkey. The peculiar premise is matched with accurate challenging gameplay and some great multiplayer modes (like Monkey...

Doodle Jump (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Release Date: 06/04/2009, updated in 2020

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, Amazon Fire, Android, DS, Xbox 360 and iOS

Genres: Action and Platform

Accessibility: 14 features

Developer: Lima Sky (@LimaSky)

Players: You can play with 1 to 2 players in the same room

Doodle Jump is a jumping video game where you guide a hand-drawn four-legged creature up an endless series of platforms. Once you fall to the bottom of the screen it's game over.

Cave Story

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Release Date: 20/12/2004, updated in 2018

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, Mac, PC, Switch and Wii

Genres: Action, Narrative, Platform and Puzzle

Developer: Studio Pixel JP (@StudioPixelJP)

Players: This is a single-player game

Cave Story is a running and jumping game styled after classic Metroid and Castlevania games of the 1980's. Unusually, it was initially overlooked until it gained popularity on the internet and then received widespread critical acclaim. The simplicity,...

Rhythm Paradise

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 31/07/2008, updated in 2016

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, GBA, Wii and Wii U

Genres: Rhythm

Developer: tsunkuboy (@tsunkuboy)

Players: This is a single-player game

Rhythm Heaven (also known as Rhythm Paradise, Rhythm World and Rhythm Tengoku) is a Japanese rhythm game where you perform everyday action in time with a musical beat.

VVVVVV

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Release Date: 11/01/2010, updated in 2017

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, Android, PC, PS Vita, PS4, Switch, Web and iOS

Genres: Adventure, Platform and Puzzle

Developer: Terry Cavanagh (@TerryCavanagh)

Players: This is a single-player game

VVVVVV is a running and jumping game, without the jumping. Not having the ability to jump may seem like a disadvantage, but instead you can flip gravity to get around the various rooms of the abandoned space station. It looks like a 1980's game for the...

Donkey Kong

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Release Date: 01/01/1981, updated in 2015

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, GameCube, Switch and Wii

Genres: Action and Platform

Players: This is a single-player game

Donkey Kong is a series of running and jumping games where you play Mario, who navigates a single screen to rescue the princess. It was the start of the platform game genre and although is now dated, can still be played on a wide range of systems.

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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