The PS4 and Xbox One have been having their battle over the best home console but the handhelds have been scooting by just fine. While players across all platforms argued about exclusives, the Nintendo 3DS received perhaps some of the greatest games of the year (and a few more from previous years). This isn’t to discount the PS Vita either. Despite the underwhelming support it’s received from Sony by way of AAA titles, there have still been a fair number of Vita titles that are worth checking out. We’ll stay neutral on which handheld is better – or which one is worth your time and money more – but in the meantime, here are the nominees for the best handheld game of 2015.
The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D (3DS)
OlliOlli2: Welcome to Olliwood (PS Vita)
Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate (3DS)
Xenoblade Chronicles 3D (3DS)
Terraria (PS Vita)
Steins;Gate (PS Vita)
Winner: The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D (3DS)
Throughout Zelda’s illustrious history, much of the series’ acclaim has been focused on titles like The Wind Waker or A Link to the Past or The Ocarina of Time or even Twilight Princess. The only other game we can think of that doesn’t get enough love is Skyward Sword. But then there’s Majora’s Mask. When Majora’s Mask first released in 2000, it had some impossibly large shoes to fill. Could Nintendo score twice in a row following the masterpiece that was Ocarina of Time? Because of this, Majora’s Mask was considered to be great…but not perfect.
Here’s the kicker though – it was still a damn great game and it built up a strong following. So strong that Nintendo finally caved in and brought Majora’s Mask to the 3DS. The best part was that it not only revamped the visuals significantly and added touch screen support but streamlined its time-based gameplay and eliminated many of the frustrations inherent in the original release. The result is a game that isn’t out of place in this era of blockbusters and pretty much the best handheld game of 2015.
Note: GamingBolt’s Game of the Year categories, nominations and awards are selected via an internal nomination, voting and debate process. You can check the rest of categories and the respective winners here.