It’s that time of year again. As the year wraps up it’s time to look back on what DS titles you might of missed this past year. 2007 was a huge year for the DS which really proved that 3rd parties can create some high quality titles that can even stand up to Nintendo software. So as prices drop and deals are struck we give you the top 10 DS titles of 2007.
10. Hotel Dusk: Room 215
A graphics novel, point-and-click, mystery on the DS pretty much sums up what Hotel Dusk is all about. Don’t get me wrong though, Hotel Dusk is a very in-depth story in which Kyle Hyde, a former NY police detective travels to a mysterious hotel in search of his old partner. While staying at Hotel Dusk, Kyle unravels a mystery filled with twists and revelations. What you first notice about Hotel Dusk is the very unique art style which fits in nicely with the mood and tone of the game. Why it made the list?: Hotel Dusk may not be the action packed DS title of the year, but the intriguing storyline and sketch book art style hold the game above others.
9. Dementium: The Ward
Almost two years after Metroid Prime Hunters, we finally get a decent FPS. A survival-horror FPS at that. Dementium: The Ward puts you as a man who awakes in a blood splattered, zombie filled mental hospital that has evidently had a few issues. You’re thrown into a gory mystery filled with twists and turns from the moment you boot up the game. FPS controls work perfectly along with some very nice graphical effects for the DS including some real-time lighting effects. Why it made the list?: This horror FPS might not make you wet yourself like console versions, but it can sure give you a scare
8. Planet Puzzle League
Planet Puzzle League (also known as Tetris Attack) is part of Nintendo’s Touch Generations collection, where you move identically-sized square blocks of various colors and stack them in a two-dimensional field that is 6 spaces wide and 12 spaces tall. With the stylus, drag blocks horizontally to match columns/rows of 3 or 4 of the same color in order to clear the line. In basic terms, it’s just a combination of Tetris and Bejeweled. It’s a very simple game, but can kick you in the face when the pace starts ramping up. It becomes very difficult to set this one down. Wi-Fi modes keep the replay value high with a constant flow of heated online puzzle matches. Why it made the list?: It may be just another puzzle game, but it’s nearly impossible to stop playing it.
7. Chibi-Robo: Park Patrol
A pollution epidemic is killing off flowers and ravaging parks worldwide. To combat this threat, Citrusoft Robotics has developed an eco-friendly Chibi-Robo and sends it to parks everywhere. As Chibi-Robo, you basically restore local parks to its former glory by raising flowers and plants, building park equipment and defeating toxic enemies. This may not sound like much, but Chibi packs a punch. You can now use buggies, cars, boats and other vehicles via touch screen which works well. What was graphically lacking on the cube version looks nice on the DS. Why it made the list?: Park Patrol might be a bit different than its predecessor, but the new additions improve Chibi. Plus it’s on the go.
6. Worms: Open Warfare 2
The concept is simple. The player takes control of a team of four worms. The goal of the game is to defeat the opposing teams by reducing the health points of enemy worms to zero without losing all of your worms. You achieved this goal by using various types of weaponry and tools. When I say various I mean crazy. You can use anything from a blowtorch and shotgun to banana bombs and holy hand grenades. Unlike the past few Worms titles, this one surpasses them all with tight controls, 2D side display and new weapons. What is truly new to the series is the much needed Wi-FI multiplayer. Why it made the list?: This very unique franchise finally goes back to the roots were it shows best.
5. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
Most of the time. DS versions of blockbuster titles never have the quality that there could have been. Call of Duty 4 changes that by pushing the DS hardware to the fullest. Graphically, this FPS is one of the finest to cross the DS. Textures on character models, guns, and items look great. Controls work smoothly with almost perfect accuracy. Unlike other handheld FPSs, CoD4 allows for iron sights which really adds a bit more immersion. As far as story, you take control of several anonymous soldiers from either the British SAS or the American Armed forces in order to take out Imran Zakhaev (ultranationalist of Russia). No Wi-Fi, but it does allow for Multicard and download to play multiplayer. Why it made the list?: Call of Duty 4 offers the best FPS experience on the DS besides Metroid Prime Hunters. Ready up!
4. Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings
Revenant Wings is a real-time strategy RPG which follows the events of the PS2’s, Final Fantasy XII. You play as Vann and Panelo who now posses their own airship. Together they travel around Ivalice searching for adventure, and eventually finding it on the floating continent of Lumeres. The RTS aspect allows you to control massive armies (via touch screen) which can be leveled up and upgraded as desired. FF Relevant Wings doesn’t bring a whole lot of new to RPGs, but it is a tight, fun, and long adventure. Why it made the list?: Takes a great RPG, adds a RTS element, and puts it on a handheld. What’s better than that?
3. Picross DS
Yes, two great puzzle games in one year. This one however should be a required purchase for DS owners. The concept is as simple as it gets. Use logic to determine if blocks are filled or empty and flip the filled blocks over to reveal a picture. Sounds boring, but there’s no way to explain how addictive this process can become. And as if Nintendo couldn’t take more time away from your life, they added competitive Wi-Fi modes and a mode to download/upload other peoples designed puzzles. Replay value for this title is incredible. Why it made the list?: One of the most addictive DS games created so far.
2. Pokemon Diamond/Pearl
There not much convincing to do when a portable Pokemon title hits. Over 12 million copies proves it. Pokemon RPGs are what fuel Nintendo’s handhelds. The latest duo to the series are Diamond and Pearl versions. The new adventure takes pace in the new land of Sinnoh which is filled with new and old Pokemon. What truly adds to the franchise, besides the usual catching pocket monsters is the new Wi-FI battling and trading modes. That and the option to bring your Pokemon from your GBA games makes this one of the best sets yet. Why it made the list?: The king title of handheld games improves with new multiplayer features which will keep you glued to your DS.
1. The Legend of Zelda Phantom Hourglass
Of all of these great titles this year, Phantom Hourglass is a must. It’s like having Wind Waker in your hands. Nintendo finally took the reins back from Capcom and developed a portable Zelda title. They did a mighty fine job at that. Using the stylus to slash with Link has never felt better. Touch controls are about as tight as they come with precision item wielding and note taking. Of course you have your classic Zelda dungeons that have evolved to fit the new controls. Like Wind Waker you roam the seas searching from island to island to collect rare metals and spheres that will hopefully save Princess Zelda. Graphically, I’d have to say this is the best looking DS game ever. Cel-shading looks very similar to it’s predecessor. Over all this is a must have!!! Why it made the list?: It’s a Zelda game. Enough said.