FYIG had the chance to play Yoshi’s new portable adventure this past week. Find out what we thought in our Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World Review!
|Release Date||January 19th, 2017|
Yoshi has been my favourite Nintendo character since the first time I played Mario Kart 64. He’s had his own fair share of games, but very few of them outside of the Yoshi’s Island games have been that memorable. I never had the opportunity to play Yoshi’s Woolly World when it came out for the Wii U, but it was always a game I wanted to try at some point in time. Luckily, Nintendo decided to bring the lovable 2D platformer to the 3DS last month as Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World. The transition to the smaller screen didn’t take away from the beautiful visuals and well-constructed levels. This feels like a game that was tailor-made for the 3DS.
Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World is a platformer starring Mario’s dinosaur companion, Yoshi, and involves a world made of yarn (obviously). Yoshi swallows enemies and turns them into yarn balls. He can then shoot these yarn balls as projectiles to incapacitate other enemies or to reveal secret platforms and gems. It’s a pretty straightforward game, but there is a lot of content in each level and if you try and fly through it, you’ll probably miss a good portion of the collectibles and secret areas.
This version of the game contains all 6 worlds with 8 levels each from the Wii U version while also adding in extra levels when collecting certain collectibles. Players can choose between Standard Mode and Mellow Mode. The standard levels are what you’d expect from a platformer and become quite difficult later in the game. The lack of a level timer and unlimited lives makes it easy to pick up and play anytime. There were many times where I’d pick up my 3DS for a few minutes to get through a level before putting it back down to do something else. For the completionist in you, there are 5 vials of yarn, 5 flowers, 20 crafting parts, and gems to collect in each level. These collectibles are well-hidden and it takes some dedication to find everything in the game.
Mellow Mode takes the difficulty down a notch by giving Yoshi wings. This makes it almost impossible to die in pits or other death traps (not that that was too difficult to begin with because of Yoshi’s hover). This is where Poochy comes in as well, as three little Poochies help you through the game by sniffing out different secret areas and tugging on strands of yarn. It’s a really great way to add a little hint system in and it works really well without making the game incredibly easy. Poochy will take out some of the more difficult enemies in the game as well which is part of the Mellow Mode experience. I honestly enjoyed Mellow Mode more because Yoshi moved faster and the movement felt smoother. I wish I had the option to tweak the running speed in Standard Mode
Outside of Story Mode, Poochy even appears in his own levels. These levels are running levels where Poochy runs automatically and you try to collect things. These levels are fairly short and outside of getting a high score and grabbing some collectibles, there isn’t much pay-off to completing them. It was a nice touch, but I preferred the main game by far over these little diversions.
The level design is great in Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World with each themed world being very reminiscent of most Nintendo platformers. There’s a lot of random exploring to do, but it never feels like anything is impossible. If you’re playing on Standard Mode, it really takes a keen eye to find everything in a level. This becomes even more difficult in later stages where puzzles and hidden exits are more intricate. Every once in a while, there is a transformation area where Yoshi will turn into a giant Yoshi, get an umbrella to catch an updraft, or even become a dolphin. These are great breaks in the gameplay and offer something a little different each time.
Boosters are available for those that want yet another edge to their game. I never felt the need to use these, but they’re pretty broad. They range from things like second chances from falling in pits to help in finding secrets to power ups. You can even scan in the Poochy Amiibo to get help from a single Poochy in a level. Scanning a Yarn Yoshi Amiibo ends up giving you a clone Yoshi in-game that mimics your every move. I’ve never been a huge fan of Amiibos, but they do a good job at implementing them in this game. It’s just another way that this game was made to be accessible to all ages.
The world map is pretty simplified on 3DS with a 2D map allowing you to run between worlds, different huts, and the Yoshi Theater. Poochy’s Hut is where you would find Poochy’s auto-run levels. Yoshi’s Hut adds a nice new ability to create your own Yoshi characters. It includes an Easy Mode which allows you to pick pre-made templates while Professional Mode allows you to customize to your liking. These creations can then be shared by using StreetPass. Yoshi Theater contains some art as well as some stop motion videos which have a question after each one. A correct answer gets you 500 gems, but they’re on a time unlock so it takes 31 days to view them all.
I loved Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World. It was the perfect type of game to bring to the 3DS and while it took a bit of a graphical downgrade, it’s still a beautiful looking game that is a joy to play through. Pick this one up if you haven’t already, it’s definitely a must-have for anyone that owns a 3DS.
*A copy of this game was provided to FYIG by Nintendo for review purposes*