Since the launch of the first generation DS in 2004, Nintendo DS has been known worldwide for its platform, adventure, and RPG titles. DS games like Pokemon, Animal Crossing, The Legend of Zelda, Kirby, and Super Mario Bros dominated the Nintendo DS catalog of games.

However, that left in the background a genre that is very popular on consoles and PCs, the shooters, which, for certain reasons, failed to fit very well on the Nintendo handheld. Even so, several gems are worth remembering and enjoying again. Let’s take a look at the

Best Military / War Games for Nintendo 3DS

Ironfall: Invasion (2015)

Publisher: VD-dev

It never hurts to start with a classic shooter with lots of action.

As the name suggests, Iron Fall Invasion is a shoot-em-up adventure set in the near future where humanity faces the threat of an alien invasion, the Dyxides. This robotic alien race is not exactly friendly. In fact, they are real killing machines and have their own army. 

IronFall Invasion

You assume the role of a member of a small resistance, which is outnumbered by the enemy army. Therefore, it is essential to know how to optimize all combat resources and, above all, try to take advantage of the terrain and the many objects found in each scenario to gain tactical benefits. 

Point-blank action, an online mode that attracted many players, and a longer story than it seems. In short, try Ironfall: Invasion.

Moon Chronicles (2014)

Publisher: Mastiff

Born as an improved version of the Nintendo DS game Moon, created by Renegade Kid, this game features a mission to the moon to build a launch facility to Mars. The thing is that during this work, they discover a hatch that leads to the bowels of the Moon, where unexplained secrets dwell…

Moon Chronicles

From the original version, Moon already dared enough to be a first-person shooter on DS, something very rare to see but did not work badly at all.

Chronicles returns with a bet on science fiction, offering a narrative digitally distributed by episodes, each containing several chapters. On the technical side, the game runs at 60 FPS, and the gameplay squeezes all the juice out of the Circle Pad Pro. 

The graphics may not be flashy, but Moon Chronicles will keep you entertained with its mysterious and violent atmosphere.

Heavy Fire: Special Operations 3D (2012)

Publisher: Teyron

Although the 3DS catalog is full of animated and colorful video games, Teyron dared to enter modern warfare to give us a simple but entertaining shooter.

Heavy Fire Special Operations 3D

In Heavy Fire: Special Operations 3D, you will join an elite special forces unit that must end the terrorist threat in Somalia. The game uses an on-rails shooter formula where the targets to shoot will appear all over the screen.

You can choose between three character profiles each with unique attributes and weapons. With the combination of intelligence, strategy, and strength, you can navigate a dangerous terrain full of enemies that do not intend to give you a truce.

The game doesn’t offer much more than that, but it’s enough to entertain you thanks to its severe and realistic tone, something out of the ordinary in a Nintendo console.

Monster Shooter (2012)

Publisher: Gamelion Studios

Now it’s time to return to the animated aesthetics, and what better way than with a game where you have to kill a horde of monsters from another galaxy to free your kitty.

Monster Shooter game for 3DS

With an isometric view, the game features many levels and scenarios full of monsters you must exterminate in the most fun ways possible.

Its shooter gameplay is solid, with a progress curve of different objectives.

Monster Shooter is entertaining and addictive even after you’ve beaten almost every level, and to top it all off, it looks and sounds great.

I don’t have to say anymore. Go out now to save your kitty, and don’t forget to bring your proton rifle.

Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. (2015)

Publisher: Nintendo

From the creators of Fire Emblem and Advance Wars, Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. is a turn-based tactical game that takes us to the year 1865, in a reality in which historical characters coexist with fictional characters from literary works.

Also, steam technology has evolved so much that it has allowed humanity to progress and develop with great machines that are very advanced for the time.

Code Name STEAM for Nintendo 3DS

But this era of progress is threatened by an alien invasion, forcing Abraham Lincoln himself to create a special corps of elite soldiers made up of a multitude of literary heroes.

With such a crazy premise, this 3DS game features a system that takes several elements from Valkyria Chronicles, Advance Wars, and XCOM to give a challenging but rewarding experience.

In each battle, you can only deploy four characters simultaneously, a number so small that you will have to coordinate them to work together as a team, constantly covering each other. 

Another highlight is its third-person view as if it were a shooter. It sounds like a bad idea, but it works great.

Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. may not be on par with the other works of Intelligent Systems, but it manages to shine with its own light thanks to fun gameplay and a narrative that will keep you hooked during its 20 hours of duration.

Metal Gear Solid 3D: Snake Eater (2012)

Publisher: Konami

Because war is not only about soldiers and explosions but also about spies and stealth.

The quality of Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is probably beyond any doubt, and with the years that have passed since its release on PlayStation 2, we can corroborate that it has been a defining installment within the series that knew how to provide critical playable keys as well as open its setting to much more open environments.

Metal Gear Solid Snake Eater 3D

Therefore, it was no surprise that Konami then launched one of its star franchises to the portable arena, creating one of the best adaptations of the 3DS catalog.

Of course, there are some technical details with the game, but it makes up for it with graphics that exploit all the capabilities the 3DS has to offer. Speaking of which, the 3D mode of the title allows us to follow Solid Snake closely during his missions in the jungle.

The control also feels different from the original version, although that’s where the Circle Pad Pro excels as never before.

Stealth in the jungle, interaction with the animals that inhabit it, and many other elements, such as melee fighting, still work wonderfully. In addition, its primary and supporting characters are very well thought out, both as characters in their own right and in their routines when facing the role of enemies.

Overall, Metal Gear Solid 3D: Snake Eater honors the original version while offering the best espionage experience on Nintendo’s console.

Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars (2011)

Publisher: Ubisoft

As one of the first titles released for the Nintendo 3DS, Ubisoft did not have an easy task, but the result is a turn-based strategy gem that earned a place in the hearts of gamers.

Tom Clancy titles are one of the most acclaimed war franchises in the industry, so we can expect no less from a 3DS title bearing his name.

Tom Clancys Ghost Recon Shadow Wars

Here you take control of an elite American force with the mission to prevent Russia from going haywire and an ultra-nationalist leader with a dark plan to seize power overnight.

Shadow Wars 3D uses the top screen to show us the scenario and the action and the touch screen to show us information about units or the scenario.

The strategy mechanics themselves are the real highlight. You will have six types of soldiers, each with their own abilities, and you will have to advance through the scenario to accomplish objectives by balancing the pros and cons of each of them. Similar to Advance Wars, you must use the units intelligently in this title.

The gameplay is complemented by other things, such as the possibility of performing special attacks by each soldier when you fill up an energy bar. A progression system will give you points to assign to your soldiers or perform special actions, such as requesting air support.

It’s not the most intense war game, but that’s where the fun lies. It’s a slow, strategic, and complex action title, so you’d better think carefully about every move your squad makes.

For these reasons, Shadow Wars 3D takes the award for best war game on the 3DS because it knew how to take advantage of the virtues of the console like few others.

Wrapping Up The List of  Top Military / War Games for Nintendo 3DS

Indeed, the war genre had some complications with the Nintendo 3DS, but that is no excuse for doing a good job, and the games on this list are proof of that.

Whether in a chaotic war zone or a silent jungle, 3DS commanders were able to have fun with these games, and some are still enjoying them.