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Every Exclusive Nintendo 3DS HAL Laboratory Game (That Isn’t Kirby) To Buy Before the eShop Closes

On Monday, March 27, 2023, Nintendo will be permanently closing the doors of the 3DS and Wii U eShop. While owners of each system will be able to still download games they have previously purchased after the digital store’s closure, it will be impossible to buy any new titles. Many Kirby games will be lost to the Nintendo 3DS and Wii U eShop's closure in the coming days, but so will several HAL Laboratory games exclusive to last generation's beloved handheld system--for those not in the know, HAL made quite a few must-play puzzle games that are only available on 3DS. Before the Nintendo 3DS eShop stops accepting new purchases in a few days, we wanted to share a short guide with you all detailing the exclusive HAL Laboratory games you can still purchase digitally before it's too late. Below is every HAL Laboratory original and exclusive game (that is not part of the Kirby series) available on the Nintendo 3DS eShop!

Get them while you still can!


During the development of Kirby: Triple Deluxe, HAL Laboratory’s designer Yasuhiro Mukae conjured up an idea for an experimental puzzle title on the Nintendo 3DS while working on the pink puff's big 3D leap into the handheld market. Originally conceived to be a potential Kirby spin-off game, HAL Laboratory allowed Mukae's personal project to move forward as a full game with a small team while the majority of their developers continued to work on multiple titles taking place in Dream Land. To everyone's surprise, Mukae's puzzle game wound up becoming the face of HAL Laboratory's 3DS eShop presence once his simple square made his public debut.

In BOXBOY!, players take control of Qbby, a square that can produce boxes to solve puzzles. By thinking literally outside the box, players will traverse over 20 worlds while conquering various obstacles and unlocking cute costumes for Qbby. BOXBOY! may be the breeziest entry of Mukae's 3DS series, but everyone should absolutely check out Qbby's first adventure if they are jumping into this franchise for the first time. Despite three excellent sequels, the simplicity of BOXBOY! still shines bright against its companion games!

Buy BOXBOY! here: $4.99 US eShop | £4.49 UK eShop

Picross 3D: Round 2

Known as Rittai Picross 2 over in Japan, Picross 3D: Round 2 is the sequel to 2009's three-dimensional block puzzle game Picross 3D for Nintendo DS. Like its predecessor, this entry of the Picross franchise pivots the game to a three-dimensional gameplay format where players chip away at blocks to create various objects, shapes, and characters. Unlike the Picross 3D, Round 2 adds an additional feature to its gameplay formula that asks players to work with two types of colored blocks that must be painted over.

With well over 350 puzzles, Picross 3D: Round 2 offers far more than its original Nintendo DS counterpart ever could--this is a beefy Picross experience that is not shy of challenging players and their intellects. Picross 3D: Round 2 also features amiibo support for ten figures that will unlock puzzles of their characters. As to be expected with this HAL Laboratory game, that naturally means Kirby, Meta Knight, and King Dedede were all supported!

Buy Picross 3D: Round 2 here:

Physical Release: Europe and Japan only

Image: Nintendo


In BOXBOXBOY!, Qbby obtains one of his signature powers while on his second quest: the ability to duplicate his body into two sets of boxes! To get around spikes, lasers, ledges, and other perilous traps, this time around players must utilize both of Qbby's old and new abilities in multi-functional ways as they once again conquer dozens of puzzling levels from the same black-and-white world BOXBOY! fans fell in love with. BOXBOXBOY! might be more or less just more BOXBOY!, but fans of the original game are getting exactly what they asked for: more Qbby, more costumes, more music, and more memorable challenges.

Buy BOXBOXBOY! here:

Bye-Bye! BOXBOY!

The fourth and final HAL Laboratory game 3DS owners can pick up is Bye-Bye! BOXBOY!, the sendoff to Qbby's trilogy on the system and what was almost the final BOXBOY! game until the Nintendo Switch came into play. Bye-Bye! BOXBOY! was designed to be Qbby’s final adventure on his home handheld system--the game feels like a celebration of all things BOXBOY! as it jumps between old ideas and new ideas while introducing more members to Qbby's square family.

Between its Kirby amiibo support, additional comic strips, and abundance of collectibles, it does not take long to realize why Bye-Bye! BOXBOY! is the fan-favorite entry of the series once you get your hands on it. Out of all the games on this list, you absolutely should own this one! It seriously is one of HAL's best.

On a side note, the Japan-exclusive physical version of Bye-Bye! BOXBOY! is ludicrously expensive as it came bundled with an amiibo of Qbby, a soundtrack CD, and the game on a physical cartridge. If you are planning on hunting down one of these physical bundles, be wary that finding one for a decent price is going to be almost impossible!

Buy Bye-Bye! BOXBOY! here:

Physical Release: Japan Exclusive (includes all three BOXBOY! 3DS games on one cartridge)

****** Pick up all these games while you still can! You don't want to regret missing out on them in the future, and we don't know when (or if) they will be made available again!

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Hey fellow Nintendo enthusiasts! 🎮 I was thrilled to come across this article highlighting exclusive Nintendo 3DS HAL Laboratory games – such gems that hold a special place in our gaming hearts. Navigating through the nostalgia, it's bittersweet to know that the eShop will be closing soon. On a related note, I wanted to share a fantastic resource for those looking to explore more classic gaming experiences, especially given the imminent closure of the eShop. I recently discovered the services offered by, particularly their Classic Discovery Leveling for an immersive journey through classic games. As we cherish these HAL Laboratory titles, it's crucial to find alternative avenues to continue our gaming adventures.

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