Two editors return to DISPUTE each other's top Game Boy Advance games on Switch.
As we did recently with the Game Boy games on NSO, Neal and Jordan are back once again to rank the six Game Boy Advance games currently available and share two of their most anticipated titles. Following the same debate-style format of the GB ranking, Neal’s going to critique Jordan’s list, and then Jordan will do the same back to Neal. *Nintendo Switch click*
Jordan Rudek's Top 6
6. Kuru Kuru Kururin
Neal’s Take: Bro - just go play Kuru Kuru Kururin. It’s really cool! I think it might be a little overrated just because of its spot as a game that never came to America, but it’s a very clever and unique spatial puzzle game of sorts where you maneuver a rotating stick through various obstacles.
5. Mario Kart Super Circuit
Neal’s Take: Properly rated. I have fond memories of playing this in multiplayer when it was new, but I’m never going back to this game. It does have some neat ideas, like being able to avoid a red shell if you just keep racing perfectly, but it’s soundly my least favorite Mario Kart.
4. Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3
Neal’s Take: Put some respect on the e-Reader levels that are included in this package. Wacko naming scheme and unnecessary voiceovers aside, this is a peculiar portable version of a masterpiece with incredible extra levels that are only available on Nintendo Switch Online (and soon-to-be formerly Wii U and also if you have a bunch of cards you had to swipe into a Game Boy Advance accessory). This is not the definitive version of Super Mario Bros. 3, but this is a cool release.
3. WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$
Neal’s Take: WarioWare is maybe the best Game Boy Advance game ever made and is so good that the only WarioWare game that topped it needed a big ridiculous cartridge to even come close to matching the simplistic brilliance of Nintendo’s first stab at microgames. Especially on the heels of the disappointing Switch entry in the series, playing through WarioWare GBA on Switch is a breath of fresh air…even if it’s 20 years old.
2. The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap
Neal’s Take: We’re not so different here. I don’t think Minish Cap is the best 2D Zelda (though maybe a hopeful replay on Switch will make it so), but it’s one of the best, made stronger by being so unique from a lot of the other 2D entries in the series. I don’t need Nintendo to give me Link to the Past 2 again; I need them to take me to some weird tiny village with kinstones - or whatever the unique equivalent of that is in 2023.
1. Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga
Neal’s Take: I will be 100% honest: I only put Mario & Luigi 4th on my list for controversy. This game totally rules. It’s goofy and funny and the closest to an actual sequel to Super Mario RPG we will ever get. Though even still, I’d hesitate to place this in my own top spot because I think the rest of the series improved upon it and it’s very hard to go back to this early GBA RPG, especially when the 3DS remake is the same but way better.
Most Anticipated (Announced): Golden Sun
Most Anticipated (Unannounced): Final Fantasy Tactics Advance
Neal Ronaghan's Top 6
6. Mario Kart: Super Circuit
Jordan’s Take: I can’t disagree with this given Super Circuit’s position on my list. I remember being real disappointed when I brought this game home and realized how cumbersome it would be to play it in multiplayer. It’s probably the worst Mario Kart, and while that doesn’t necessarily make it a bad game, per se, it’s deserving of the ranking here.
5. Kuru Kuru Kururin
Jordan’s Take: Taking a fairly simple concept and making a game out of it, Kuru Kuru Kururin is certainly charming and fun in spurts. It just doesn’t have the staying power of the other titles on this list. I completely agree with Neal that it’s well worth busting out to see if it hooks you.
4. Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga
Jordan’s Take: Looking at the six games that Nintendo brought to NSO, it’s pretty hard to fault anyone for how they arrange the ones that Neal and I have in our top four. They’re all great and hold up quite well. Having not played the remake of Superstar Saga, I don’t have the same point of reference, but I do think the game should be higher here. It’s funny and full of heart, and it definitely helps to fill that void left in Super Mario RPG’s wake.
3. Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3
Jordan’s Take: Awful naming convention aside, SMA4: SMB3 (ugh) is a wonderful addition to the line up, largely in part due to the e-Reader levels that Neal mentioned. The more than two dozen extra levels are clever and challenging, featuring collectables that encourage replayability. On top of that you’ve got an incredibly enjoyable game in Super Mario Bros. 3, even if NSO already has two other versions of it (Super Mario Bros. 3 on NES and Super Mario All-Stars on SNES).
2. The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap
Jordan’s Take: The only game on our lists that happens to fall into the same slot as runner-up, I fell in love with Minish Cap while sailing the high seas–on a large cruise ship with an extravagant buffet. When I wasn’t gorging myself there, I spent our sea days in my cabin playing through The Minish Cap and loving every minute of it. Owning it for the first time thanks to the 3DS Ambassador program, my first experience with the game was a memorable one. It isn’t spoken of with the same reverence as other 2D Zelda games, but it probably should be.
1. WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$
Jordan’s Take: There’s no denying the absurdity and hilarity of WarioWare, but I’ve always had the most fun with Wario and his micro games in a larger multi-player setting, like with Smooth Moves on Wii or even Mega Party Game$! on GameCube. Mega Microgame$ is indeed awesome, but for me it doesn’t have the appeal of Superstar Saga and The Minish Cap. That said, it’s by far the best WarioWare game on Switch, so definitely play it for that reason.
Most Anticipated (Announced): Metroid Fusion
Most Anticipated (Unannounced): Mother 3
Whose top six list looks just like yours? Check out these Game Boy Advance titles now on Switch, and then let us know which games you’re hoping to see on the service in the future!