With the ongoing handheld console war between Sony and Nintendo, it is no surprise that these machines received some exceptional titles this year. From a wide range of titles to be selected, these are what the VGU Staff chose to be their nominees for best handheld title of 2013.
Pokémon X & Y
Pokémon X & Y was the standout title this year and after claiming VGU’s award for Best RPG of 2013, it has returned to try and claim another accolade. The franchise demonstrated the potential it could have when it launched on the Nintendo 3DS handheld, revolutionizing the series thus far.
Pokémon X &Y brought with it key innovations that included Sky Battles, Mega Evolutions, and battle animations. It is no surprise that this is one of Nintendo’s most powerful exclusives at its disposal and continues to be a console seller.
Receiving an outstanding reception, 3DS owners will be happy to add these Pokémon titles to their 3DS catalog. Many will also be considering, what is next step for the Pokémon series? (We here at VGU would be delighted to see the long-awaited remakes of Pokémon Ruby and Pokémon Sapphire on the Nintendo 3DS)
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
Nintendo really does know when to pull out the ‘big guns’ when it comes to dealing with its handheld console, this was the case when The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds was released.
The Legend of Zelda has been an integral and core exclusive for Nintendo, bringing it out of woeful positions in the past. The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds helped Nintendo cement its dominant position in the handheld market this year, as well as offering another unique and engaging adventure for Link.
With a new adventure in Link’s timeline, Nintendo fans will be eager to see what the next Zelda title will be on the Nintendo 3DS.
Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate
Batman: Arkham Origins launched in 2013 and received a mixed reception, but the series also moved to the handheld market in the form of Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate.
The Caped Crusader took to the handheld, offering a wider audience the chance to prowl the streets of Gotham as The Dark Knight. This title also received mixed reviews, but it still served as an enjoyable entry on both the Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation Vita for 2013.
Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon
Nintendo proclaimed 2013 as The Year of Luigi, celebrating the 30th anniversary of Mario’s Italian brother. Luigi centered in several unique titles, but the one that caught VGU’s attention the most was Luigi’s Mansion 2.
Luigi’s Mansion 2, better known as Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon, was the much awaited sequel to the Nintendo GameCube classic Luigi’s Mansion. This new title served as much fun as the original; running around a haunted mansion, sucking up ghosts with Luigi’s handy vacuum cleaner. This served as an enjoyable experience and retained the nostalgia of the original title.
Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon was a brilliant title to celebrate the plumber’s incredible legacy since his arrival on the gaming scene, also serving as another stand-out title for the Nintendo 3DS.
The PlayStation Vita had a breakthrough title that appeared in 2013; this was Tearaway. This truly showed the potential of the PS Vita, and how Sony’s presence in the handheld market can be formidable with its IPs.
Developed by Media Molecule, the creators behind LittleBigPlant, Tearway utilized the full features that the Vita is capable of; this included the use of the rear touch panel and PlayStation camera. Receiving an overwhelmingly positive reception, this was one of the best new IPs, but also new handheld titles released this year.
That is it for our nominees for best new handheld game of 2013. What are your thoughts? Who would you consider the award for best handheld title of 2013? Make sure to vote below. The poll opens on Monday and will shut Thursday night. The subsequent winner will be announced shortly afterwards, in the meantime, head on over to the rest of our categories and vote!