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Yoshi's Story

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Reviewed by Brian Hanson Anyone ever remember that game Yoshi's Island? Possibly, but it was quickly forgotten about. I mean, it came out 3 years ago! I don't have that high memory capability! I can't remember what I had for dinner last night! Well anyway, back to the subject of video games. I'm sure when the Nintendo gurus decided to make (finally) a first-party 2-D game, they wanted to take a tad different approach to solve the linear problems of platform games in the past. Yoshi's Story does just that. However, upon closer inspection, reveals a game that was only 75% complete. Possibly, Nintendo had Yoshi in mind for a 64DD release, but when release dates slip, They got stuck putting on limited cartridge. Not to say it isn't any fun, (which it definitely is), but come on, the original Mario Bros. had more levels! How pathetic is that?

Graphics 15 out of 10

Absolutely astounding. Not only did they take a different view on gameplay, but for the visual style itself. Light sourcing, real-time morphing, Oh, it brings a tear to my eye. Never have I beheld such beauty in a 2D game. Maybe I'm just nitpicking, but it seems some of the effects have been used to shadow the limited cart space which makes for less animation, but so far I seem to be the only person seeing that. Maybe I should get therapy. Well, it seems Nintendo "artists" used different themes to each level, like cloth, denim, cut-out, and others. All 24 WHOPPING levels (sarcasm) have been beautifully rendered, from the cut-out land, to the typical Nintendo Cloud levels and Caste levels.

Music and Sound 8 out of 10

Ugh. Ever wonder what the Yoshi's voice sounds like? Get that NASTY thought outta your head. The Yoshi's actually SING in this game. It's enough to make you inflict pain upon yourself. To give you an idea, imagine Disney's chipmunks smoking crack, then trying to sing, "EEEEEEeeeeeee AAAAAAAAaaaaaaa AAAAAAwwwwwwww..", and repeating themselves over and over. "Well, if you hate it so much, then why give it an 8?" Surprisingly, every other track in the game is very memorable and well composed. And the sound cues, wonderful! Every thing in the game has a distinct, goofy sound, like the plodding march of the Shy Guys to the hypnotic ringing of the Hearts. Just keep a mute button handy.

Game Challenge 5 out of 10

Can we say, SYNCH? Any novice gamer not keeping his eye out for points can easily beat this game in a matter of 2 hours. You see, there are 6 "Pages", because the evil (adorable, actually) Baby Bowser has turned the Yoshi's Island into a Pop-up book. Each page has 4 levels. You have to only beat one level per-page. To beat a level, you must eat 30 pieces of fruit to become happier. Each color Yoshi prefers their favorite fruit to all the others, with the exception of the random Lucky Fruit and Melons, which all Yoshi's prefer. Melons are worth the most points, followed by Lucky Fruit, then favorite fruit, then the Leftovers. If you gobble down every fruit you see, you'll be finished in no time. The one grievous error on Nintendo's behalf, however, was the most coveted fruit, the Melon, is also the most abundant. All 30 fruit you eat could be Melons. With the exception of the tasks you must perform for Melons, (like racing, long jump, and balancing a stack of Melons) they aren't as well hidden as you'd expect from Nintendo.

Game Play-Fun 9 out of 10

This game is a BLAST while it lasts. Very addicting and fun to play. Lots of secrets that could take many hours of exploration to find. It is more fun to find fruit than run towards the end of the level. Unfortunately, some levels are relatively short, and because there aren't that many levels anyway, that is a major flaw. But, that doesn't keep it from being fun, now does it? I only wish for the features in the original, like morphing, to appear somewhere, but unfortunately they didn't. Also a sad fact, anyone trying to find a hidden bonus level somewhere should stop looking. What has been a staple for many Nintendo platforms is missing. Nintendo spent TOO much space making animations and sound that they had to cut down on levels. Even with that meager number of stages, it still is a 128 megabyte (16 MB) cart, the largest available so far.

Rumble Pak 10 out of 10

Absolutely the best use of it since Star Fox. All things have been accounted for, and it doesn't over do it like some games have.


The only frustration I've ever experienced was when I was trying for 30 straight Melons, and I accidentally ate a different fruit, which forces me to start over. That's about it. There are no really "Hard" levels. Usually the only time you die is on accident.

Replayability 6 out of 10

With very little variety, one may ask how long it will last? If you just play it through to see all the levels, about 7-12 hours. If you try to uncover all the true meat this game has to offer, 2 weeks at least. Definitely rent it first, and if you enjoyed it as much as I did, go for it.

Game Value 7 out of 10

It's somewhat of a sticky issue. It is so cute, some gamers used to playing Resident Evil will inevitably pass out upon turning on the game. Those people should stay away altogether. Those people who were expecting more from Mario-man Miyamoto (he is only the supervisor, mind you) should definitely rent it. Those looking for a challenge, rent it. Those who enjoy 2D games as much as me, it is definitely worth it.

Overall 8 out of 10

So in conclusion, Yoshi's Story is a great game, but could have been something much better.

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