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Nintendo DS: 9 years, 50 must-own games

As it nears the end of its life, we summarise the best games for Nintendo's dual-screened wonder

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21) The Legend Of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass

Nintendo / Nintendo EAD Group 3 / 4.96 million sold

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The first Zelda on DS introduced a clever stylus-based control system that made the game appeal to both hardened Zelda fans and newcomers to the series. The return to the Wind Waker art style makee it a charming adventure, though the addition of some annoying backtracking means its successor Spirit Tracks is the better game these days.

22) Chrono Trigger

Square Enix / Tose / 1.21 million sold

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A remake of the much-loved SNES RPG, Chrono Trigger remains as compelling and feels as fresh today as it did when it was released in 1995. The DS version was particularly important to European gamers as it marked the first time the game was released in Europe on any format.

23) Inazuma Eleven

Nintendo / Level-5 / 500,000 sold

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This interesting game from Professor Layton studio Level-5 combines traditional RPG adventuring with tactical touch-screen football. based on the anime series of the same name (currently doing the rounds on children's TV in the west), it's a unique combination that's well worth a look if you're into both RPGs and footy.

24) Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney

Capcom / Capcom / 820,00 sold

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There aren't many games these days that can claim to have invented a brand new genre but Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney was the first title to bring courtroom drama to gaming. The strength of Phoenix Wright lies in its brilliant dialogue, which is localised perfectly with plenty of humour, and its exciting twist-packed plot.

25) Puzzle Quest: Challenge Of The Warlords

D3 Publisher / 1st Playable Productions / 330,000 sold

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A hidden gem that's since been released on almost every system known to man. Taking the typical match-three gameplay of Bejeweled and mixing it with the turn-based combat and levelling of an RPG, Puzzle Quest is gaming crack. Um, if that were ever a good thing.

26) Harvest Moon: Island of Happiness

Natsume / Marvelous Interactive / 700,000 sold

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The Harvest Moon series has always provided all the joy of living on a farm with none of the hassle of actually having to plant crops or smell of pig poo. It's the best of both worlds, essentially, which is why this DS version is well worth a look if you're agriculturally-minded.

27) 999: Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors

Aksys Games / Chunsoft / 270,000 sold

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Never released in Europe (import it, it's region-free), this dark adventure is a combination of puzzle game and branching interactive storybook, as nine people are told they have nine hours to escape a sinking ship. Its sequel is the equally wonderful Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward, which did make it to Europe.

28) Pokemon HeartGold and SoulSilver

Nintendo / Game Freak / 12.67 million sold

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Black and White 2 may be the definitive Pokémon game but long-time Pokéfans have a soft spot for this enhanced remake of the Game Boy Color favourites Pokémon Gold and Silver. With one of the largest adventures in the history of the series (including the ability to unlock the entire region from Pokémon Red and Blue once the game's finished), this remains a true classic.

29) Mario & Luigi: Partners In Time

Nintendo / AlphaDream / 1.23 million sold

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The second Mario & Luigi game see the twosome travelling back in time and teaming up with their Baby versions in order to try and find Princess Peach. The ability to separate the babies from adults makes for some interesting puzzles, and the typical Mario & Luigi humour is ever present throughout.

30) Elite Beat Agents

Nintendo / iNiS / 330,000 sold

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Some prefer the Japanese version, Osu! Tatake! Ouendan!, but Elite Beat Agents' more recognisable tracklist makes it more accessible for western audiences. It's a touchscreen-based rhythm game that's easy to get used to but becomes a real beast when you unlock higher difficulty levels.
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