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Month of Yoshi: Review #6, Yoshi’s Crafted World

Happy Easter with the conclusion of the Month of Yoshi: a full-blown review, all for Yoshi’s Crafted World on Nintendo Switch

To you who are eating chocolate eggs, happy Easter: the oval theme that connected all the games treated in the Mese di Yoshi ends today, with the review of the recent adventure of the “saurian”, that is Yoshi’s Crafted World. You may be wondering, “but why not Woolly World?” The chapter released on Wii U (and which received a demake on 3DS shortly after, with Poochy & Yoshi’s Woolly World) is actually the better title of the two, but the main theme does not compromise. We will not deal with any title without the eggand the ones our hero lays in Woolly World are balls of yarn!

So what about this exploit by Good-Feel Games? The road of the development team, for fans of the Big N, has been full of successes since Kirby and the Hero’s Cloth bewitched Wii owners. However, the nonconformist attitude with which that game approached the conventions of the series (with the undoubted complicity of being born as an unrelated title) received a brake on the next console. Yoshi’s Woolly World provides, apart from the balls, the exact same moveset of the lizard, and the “re-education” of the developers was completed here. At what price, though?

Art Attack – Month of Yoshi: Review of Yoshi’s Crafted World

The plot of Yoshi’s Crafted World sees the eponymous Yoshi close the initiative that kept us company for a month and a half with a review without the mustache that marked its debut. We’re definitely in the timeline where Mario is still a puppet, considering that Baby Bowser it doesn’t take long to show its ugly face. Leaving aside the aesthetic originality with which the levels seem to come out of an episode of Art Attack, the narrative pretext is exactly that. An excuse, but not one of the particularly pretentious ones. And apart from a puff with the nose, we don’t expect anything else.

A new artifact has been discovered on the inexplicably paper island of the Yoshis: it is the Sun of wishes. And just like the Triforce from the Zelda saga, which we finally described in detail last week, also in this case we are dealing with an object capable of granting the wishes of anyone who manages to get their hands on it. It goes without saying that Kamek and Baby Bowser have their eyes on us: the Yoshi tribe manages to prevent the scoundrels from taking away the loot… or rather, from taking it home whole. The heroes with colors unused by the player remain guarding the Sun, now extinguished, while the “players” have the task of recovering the colored gems and, therefore, the powers.

Month of Yoshi: Review #6, Yoshi's Crafted World

A bit of Island, a touch of Story, but then what? – Yoshi Month: Review of Yoshi’s Crafted World

From the first moments of the game, the title stands as amodern interpretation than what is already appreciated in Yoshi’s Island, taking from Story only and only what is strictly necessary. Specifically, all the actions we’ve come to love are present at the roll: fluttering jump with attached growl, tongue, crash to the ground and, of course, the eggs. Without Baby Mario, a heart system takes over (functionally identical to the stars of Island) with which to fill Yoshi’s health in a similar way to what was seen in Story. Our health at the end of the level is included in the score.

The role of flowers, tending to hide in unthinkable places, is itself identical to the five hidden in each level of Island. The only difference is that levels can now have as many as six or seven, plus possible extra flowers earned at the finish line by completing additional objectives. The twenty red coins, then, peep out again hiding among the regular ones. From Yoshi’s Story, on the other hand, the crossroads system makes its return: during the levels it often happens to move forward in the level with an unexpected shift of the action to the background (or vice versa), subjecting the viewfinder to the eggs that Yoshi can draw from enemies to an unprecedented and pleasant selective Z axis.

Month of Yoshi: Review #6, Yoshi's Crafted World

Recycled Cardboard – Month of Yoshi: Review of Yoshi’s Crafted World

With an interface for tutorial messages and end-of-level scores so similar to Island’s green chalkboard, it’s natural to wonder what awaits Yoshi fans who have been long without a title capable of matching the 1995 original. Of course, after hurling the controller against the wall to the umpteenth death in the atrocious Poochy It’s not Grullo hard unlocked in that game, no one can expect a disarming ease like that of the first levels of Crafted World. Even facing the adventure in the appreciated co-op modewe have found that the real difficulty is for the completionists.

If you’re just aiming to get to Baby Bowser in his lair, though, you’ll probably miss out on a good half of the game. In fact, each level boasts two variants, which (we’re not joking) are called “Straight” e “Reverse”. If the first consists of the internship as it is, the second asks us to face everything backwards by reversing the view. We understand the artistic intent of wanting to show the hardcover aesthetic at times almost photorealistic, but in terms of game design this choice seems more like a gimmick to lengthen the broth than anything else. A real shame, considering some levels are a real joy to play.

Month of Yoshi: Review #6, Yoshi's Crafted World

Making the Most of it – Month of Yoshi: Review of Yoshi’s Crafted World

If you go beyond what is supposed to be the target audience of the game, you certainly want to aim for completionism. In this sense, we strongly advise you to play the adventure with the help of someone, because in hiding its secrets this title definitely shows an almost diametrically opposite intention. Whether it’s flowers to be obtained by aiming the winged clouds with the stopwatch (and, therefore, within the short time the camera is shot) or red coins positioned in a trail to touch while on a moving platform , things can turn out to be tougher than they initially appear.

Once you become familiar with the gameplay ideas that each level introduces for better or worse, you will also get used to yet another “Reverse” in which you lacked the flower of the time trial within which to bring the three Poochy puppies to the finish line. What we regret having to acknowledge is that the spark we hoped for didn’t go off. It still remains a good platformer, but if the “one-way” level design of the Kirby series managed to seduce us with The Lost Land and Return to Dream Land Deluxe, there must be a reason as well. Evidently, Yoshi has yet to find his ultimate polygon adventure (for which Super Mario 64 DS was on a more than good path).

Month of Yoshi: Review #6, Yoshi's Crafted World

Son tastes – Month of Yoshi: review of Yoshi’s Crafted World

Contrary to the division of the Yoshis in the levels of Island, aimed at expressing the relay race to which the plot alludes with the gameplay, here you can choose (or divide yourself, if you are playing in co-op) the color of the protagonist at any time from the map. As an option of customization, for the few claims (price aside) that the game has, it could also be enough. On the other hand, we were quite surprised by the possibility of riding around the levels of the cardboard baskets with holes in the bottom, like an “imaginary kart”. These are decorations for the character that draw on a bit of all the microcosm established in Island some time ago.

We just wish we could say the same about the style minigame gachapon with which to obtain these cosmetic items. Simply put, the total coins accumulated in the levels can be spent through a vending machine on the map. Leaving aside the fact that one hundred coins per attempt are part of the same attempt to stretch the stock to which we alluded earlier, the whole is accompanied by one of the most cacophonous and disastrous melodies ever given birth by the Colossus of Kyoto. Specifying the flaws of a single piece tastes like a pebble in the shoe (or rather, in the ear), but since it is something that we find ourselves hearing often, it had to be done.

Month of Yoshi: Review #6, Yoshi's Crafted World

Just aesthetics or not? – Yoshi Month: Review of Yoshi’s Crafted World

Glissando on the repetitiveness (and on the challenge unnecessarily self-imposed by / to the development team) of Dritto and Rovescio, one wonders if the cardboard diorama aspect is exclusive to the graphic aspect. In reality, even the gameplay fully reflects this choice of Good-Feel. From trains to be reassembled with cans and anything else to magnets to be used as removable steps for metal surfaces, everything in the game looks physically plausible. If we can strike a blow at the title, there’s a certain sense of wonder in discovering what the development team has come up with for the next level.

At the same time, the whole thing is detailed enough to be conceivable even as a nook in the increasingly sprawling Mario universe. A version of Yoshi Island in which the player’s suspension of disbelief is a little less when one wonders why the game world is suddenly made of cardboard, perhaps. We recognize it. But when the appearance of the Mushroom Kingdom changes sometimes imperceptibly from one platformer to another, our logic can do nothing but surrender. And the magic of the world of plumbing, perhaps, lies precisely in this aspect.

Month of Yoshi: Review #6, Yoshi's Crafted World

Wearing Glasses (Prescription) and Headphones (Earmuff) – Yoshi’s Month: Yoshi’s Crafted World Review

We talked about one review officially and, despite the time that has passed since day one, we will keep our word by dedicating ourselves to the presentation. The satisfaction of the two primary senses, in this title, is decidedly at the antipodes. On the front of graphics engine there is very little to speak ill of: the photorealism that Good-Feel applies to its backdrops and to the textures of the 3D models, so wonderfully “fake”, is at an all-time high. The unreal feeling of seeing a cardboard diorama come to life never gets old, however stale the whole experience risks becoming with the sound of right and wrong.

And that is why the sonorous it irritates us so much. Regardless of whatever happened during development with the theme of the costume dispenser, in general the sound is much more sluggish than usual, to the point of making this production one of the most unrecognizable in the entire Grande N oeuvre. Considering that composing the songs this time is Kazufumi Umeda and no longer the volcanic Tomoya Tomita and Misaki Asada (authors of the masterpiece that was the soundtrack of Woolly World), too many things are explained. Better to leave the relay role to Baby Mario, because this is what happens when the score makers change.

Month of Yoshi: Review #6, Yoshi's Crafted World

Final considerations

Despite the bitterness with which we have noticed the flaws of the game, we certainly cannot say that we are talking about a bad title. Since this is a title published by the Grande N itself, however, it is still about sixty euros that leave your wallet. Unless you are a loyal fan of Mario’s trusted and proud companion in adventures, be ready for a game almost …