Nintendo has brought a brand-new RPG to the 3DS starring none other than the Mii characters. Find out what we thought in our Miitopia Review!
|Release Date||July 28, 2017|
I’ll be the first one to say that Miitopia wasn’t exactly on my radar when I first heard about it a few months ago. I expected it to be a gimmicky game to cash in on the popularity of those cute little Mii characters. That’s why first impressions aren’t always the best to go by, though. Miitopia is much more entertaining than I ever thought it would be.
Miitopia starts off with a normal day in the kingdom, but that doesn’t last. The game’s antagonist, The Dark Lord, shows up and starts snatching everybody’s faces up like something out of a horror movie! That’s downright terrifying! Of course, this is a Nintendo game and the face-snatching is anything but graphic. You just wind up with a bunch of blank faces that you can’t talk to. Where did those faces go? The Dark Lord put them on random monsters which you now must defeat. It’s time for your Mii (and your other Mii companions) to save the world by restoring all the faces.
Miitopia is an interesting RPG for the simple fact that you choose the cast. You’ll start off by casting your Mii as the main character and choosing his personality, name, and role on the team (mage, cleric, warrior, cook, etc.). Every time a new character is introduced, you’ll choose which Mii you’d like to use to portray them. My party consisted of Lady Gaga and Bob Ross (and we were a pretty formidable team I might add). I just used the online database to find random Miis, but you can assign them from Mii Maker, Tomodachi Life, your Friends List, or even a QR code. It was a simple process anytime I had to cast a character.
After you finish casting the game, you can begin your journey. This journey takes place on a map not unlike what you would see in Super Mario World. You have a bit of choice in the direction you go at times, but it’s pretty linear. There are some explorable areas here and there which and as you go through the game, you’re given more opportunity to choose what direction to go. Once you choose an area to explore, your party moves automatically through a side-scrolling level encountering battles, chests, and items along the way. At the end of this, you’ll end up at an Inn where you can rest up before the next journey. These side-scrolling levels never feel too boring or long because the Miis have witty banter back and forth (Lady Gaga asked me if I tooted) and there is always a battle around the corner to keep you busy.
Battles are turn-based and will pit your party against a group of monsters like any other RPG you’ve ever played. You can attack, use a skill or magic, or use a recovery item. You only control yourself, the rest of your party is autonomous. Sounds pretty boring, right? Well, that’s where the other systems come in to play. Everything your party does is based on three systems, relationships, classes, and personalities. It adds a whole new element to the game.
Miitopia has several different classes that determine a character’s skills, strengths, and weaknesses moving forward. What I like most about this system is that there are traditional classes like the Mage and Cleric, but there are also classes like Pop Star and a Chef. As you continue on in the game, you’ll unlock even weirder classes like the Flower and the Tank which turns yourself into a cannon. It was nice to see that the developers had some fun with these and made this game different.
As much as the type of class determines what a Mii does in battle (a Warrior will take the lead role while a Cleric would take a support role), personality plays just as big of a role. One of my characters was set to cool and she would dodge attacks, another was stubborn and would turn down healing, but attack twice. These different personalities make the game so much more dynamic, you are never quite sure what you’re going to see next.
The most interesting part of the Miitopia battle system is how relationships affect the battle. Your team members each have different relationships with each other which will determine how they work together in battle. Characters can show off to dish out extra damage, help teammates dodge an attack, or even follow them into an attack for a 2 for 1 hit. It’s not all good, though. They can become annoyed with each other and refuse to heal each other and other things like that. All of these systems come together so well and make for a far better experience than if it was just a normal RPG.
So how do you develop these relationships between the Miis in your party? You go to the Inn and throw them in a room together! That’s not the only thing you’ll do there, these places are actually pretty useful. You can keep your Miis fed with the food you have found on your journey. You can also earn money in Roulette and Rock, Paper, Scissors mini-games and buy new equipment like weapons, armor, and items. You don’t really choose the equipment you get, though. Instead, you give your Miis money while they’re at the Inn and they’ll spend it how they see fit. Sure, you can end up with a cool new weapon, but you could also end up with a measly banana.
Miis can grab new costumes and there are some truly interesting ones like a chicken suit or even a doughnut frying pan. It keeps things fun and it’s always exciting to see what new style is going to come up next. There’s even Amiibo support which opens up even more costume options. The awesome thing about this is that the stats are from your best purchase, so you can wear your most stylish armor without the negative effects on your stats. All RPGs should have that feature, yet this is one of the first I’ve seen that does!
Miitopia surprised me with the level of depth to what is at heart a fairly simplistic game. It’s one of those games that’s accessible to the whole family. It’s a decently long game and there’s always new items, costumes, and weapons to gain in your quest to defeat The Dark Lord. You’re not getting a game like Fallout 4, but that’s not the type of audience this game is geared to. This is a game for people who just want a few hours of enjoyment here and there without having to grind to get better. I’d recommend everyone at least give this game a chance. It might not look like much in the beginning, but it really grew on me and I’m glad I had the chance to play it.
*A copy of this game was provided to FYIG by Nintendo for review purposes*