To vent our desires, we've assembled a canon of forgotten gaming heroes and oddball fancies that make a good fit for Nintendo's dual-screened play thing. Would it help if we said "Please!"?
10 games we'd love to play on DS
|We want: A LucasArts adventure game collection|
Before consoles and PCs got all hung up on 3D and LucasArts got all hung up on churning out legions of below average playable adverts for the Star Wars cash cow, LucasFilm Games (as it was known back then) carved out a reputation for quality point-and-click adventure games driven by its S.C.U.M.M. engine (that's Script Creation Utility, fact fans). This scripting tool yielded a plethora of adventure romps that would fit the DS's stylus like a glove. We would love to see an adventure game bumper cart celebrating the genre including Maniac Mansion, LOOM, Sam and Max Hit The Road, Full Throttle and, of course, The Secret of Monkey Island. Yes, you can get them on homebrew, but they really need to be tweaked for the smaller screen.
|We demand: Okami DS|
If there is one thing that the DS handles deftly, it's cell shading. Whilst the PS2 version of Okami's beautiful pastel depth may be out of the DS's reach, the scope its stylus would provide for manipulating the washed out dreamscape of Okami is obvious. A DS version with less emphasis on action and more of a focus on Okami's innovative celestial brush and puzzle sections would tick all of the right boxes for the casual RPG fan.
|Give us: Pilot Wings DS|
The game that helped to launch the N64 (and less famously the SNES) screams First-party Nintendo Smash from every pixel. And so where better to grant Pilot Wings a third flight than on what is arguably Nintendo's most Nintendo-ish console to date? Simulating wind to billow a paraglider's parafoil by blowing into the mic would be a great addition, as would the option to plot custom courses through the stages with the stylus (exchangeable via wi-fi, naturally).
|Still want: Sketch Fighter DS|
We've already made some noise about how much we would like Ambrosia's casual gaming gem to grace the DS, but this list would not be complete without a repeat shout in the hope that the right people might be listening. With its simple blasting action, its signature visual style and the option to draw your own multiplayer battle zones, one could be forgiven for thinking that this game was designed specifically for the DS. Ambrosia, if you are out there…
|How about: A board game compendium for big kids?|
The DS already has a fantastic card and board game collection in 42 All-Time Classics. But on the last day of school term, it was always the kids who brought in Operation and Mouse Trap that drew the most attention, whilst the boffins that tried to encourage a round of chess and checkers were left to sit in the corner discussing The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe. We want a big kid's version of 42 All-Time Classics featuring the likes of Operation, Jenga (wi-fi possibilities), Mouse Trap, Kerplunk and any other game where the board is the least important part of the apparatus.
|Please: Mario Paint DS|
Mario Paint was a surprise hit for the SNES during Nintendo's 'Let's brand all of our first-party titles with Mario' phase, and paved the way for the ultra rare 64DD series entitled simply Mario Artist. These games enabled you to create images and 3D models, and even offered the option to share artwork via an online communication kit. We've got a stylus and wi-fi now – come on Nintendo, need we say more? You know it makes sense!
|Be crazy not to do: Marble Madness DS|
This long lost arcade classic was also the first game to appear on the Atari System 1, and set the machine apart from its contemporaries as the apex predator console of its day. Originally controlled using a trackball type device, Marble Madness would make for a lip-smacking slice of retro pie on the DS, were some sort of trackball control substitute to be mapped to the touchscreen.
|How high?: Donkey Kong DS|
With its aesthetic similarity to the first handheld console that championed the Donkey Kong franchise, the DS would be a fitting platform for one of Nintendo's original dual screen game characters to make a triumphant return. We're thinking a limited edition official Nintendo DS bundle, including a DS lite themed on its Donkey Kong Game & Watch forefather (rather like the modded case we covered). As for the actual game, we don't (just) want a branded collection of mini-games, we want something with a bit more platforming meat on its bones (ah, the memories of Donkey Kong Country). A game with the approach to inventive platforming of New Super Mario Bros, but featuring our favourite neck tie-toting primate.
|We'd suggest: Anima Wars|
As this year's IMG awards have made clear, mobiles are a growing proving ground for the innovations that in the past have been left on the development shelf to make way for tried-and-tested console formulas. Some of the more robust original mobile titles could warrant a release on a dedicated gaming platform, such as the turn-based strategy cum hack-and-slasher, Anima Wars. The presence of a second screen to soak up some of the stat and map duties could enable the medieval isometric action of Anima Wars to shine. Chuck in a wi-fi multiplayer mode and some stylus swishing sword controls, and Anima Wars could have the makings of a DS cult classic.
|We'd kill for: GoldenEye DS|
Halo is often lauded for finally bringing multiplayer FPS action over to console from PC. But when the Xbox was still but a twinkle in Mr Gates' eye, the N64 brought high octane multiplayer first-person shooting kicking and screaming onto a home console with GoldenEye 64. With the game came a legion of evangelical fans, who made the N64 a common feature of many a teenage boy's bedroom. Metroid Prime Hunters has already proved the DS can do shooting. Much-loved GoldenEye + Metroid Prime Hunters engine + WiFi = illegal amounts of fun. Mind you, we'd almost settle for a version of Perfect Dark (without Elvis the alien if you don't mind).
So there you have it: If you think we've missed an obvious one, tell us below. Otherwise, get reading about our favourite DS games you can play right now over on our DS Buyer's Guide.