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Mechanical Challenge on Nintendo DS

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 5 games from the last 20 years, with 8 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.

DetailsList Details

PEGI Ratings: PEGI 3 to PEGI 12
ESRB Ratings: ESRB EVERYONE to ESRB EVERYONE 10+
Australian Ratings: G to M
Genres: Action, Narrative, Physically Active, Platform, Puzzle and Rhythm
Total Likes: 8
 

 

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 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...

Rhythm Paradise

Content Rating: PEGI 7

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

Price: 70% off

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, 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.

Sonic Colours Ultimate

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 07/09/2021

Platforms: DS, PS4, Switch, Wii and Xbox One

Genres: Action and Platform

Developer: Sega (@Sega)

Players: This is a single player game

Sonic Colors is a running, jumping and grinding game where you play the iconic blue hedgehog, Sonic. Dr. Eggman has built a giant amusement park that he's powering with a captured alien race. You use Sonic's lightning speed to free the aliens through...

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,...

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 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.

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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