YOSHI’S NEW ISLAND RRP: $ 59 ( reviewed on Nintendo 3DS)
YOSHI’S New Island introduces Nintendo’s romping green dinosaur to a world of 3D. But as for how much is shiny and new, that’s another story.
The plot remains the same from the last game and, for the most part, the gameplay hasn’t changed much either.
Playing as Yoshi, with Mario on your back, the basic aim is to reach the end of each section with the baby still on board.
But rather than a typical platforming experience, the focus is to take your time and thoroughly explore the levels.
Helping the game feel fresher, Yoshi has new abilities. In addition to being able to use his long tongue to catch and swallow enemies, then spit them back at objects, he now has access to a Mega Eggdozer and its two weapons.
One of the eggs can plough through areas with ease, while a heavier metal egg lets Yoshi travel underwater – plus it can roll over enemies.
Yoshi turns into several different vehicles during certain stages and is controlled by tilting the 3DS portable console, though this game mechanic felt clumsy and poorly implemented. The visuals are a mixed bag, too. While the 3D effects add a welcome depth of fi eld to the gameplay, the combination of crisp, vibrant characters in the foreground and childlike chalkboard drawings in the background clash artistically.
The all- important end- of- level boss battles, which have been challenging in the past, have been dumbed down; the only penalty you face is having Mario fall off
Fortunately, the game’s replay value is high. You can revisit levels at any time to try to locate every collectable item and hidden area.
There are also bonus levels accessible only in the two- player mode. I like that only one copy of the game is needed, as you can share it wirelessly during this mode.
Yoshi’s New Island is ideal for that quick fi ve- minute gaming fi x, but don’t expect a great deal of change from his last outing, eight years ago.