Yoshi’s Island DS Log: Part 1

I bought Yoshi’s Island DS a month or so ago (used, because it appears to be out of print). I thought it would spend a few years rotting in my large pile of games that are yet to be played or finished, but a power outage changed all that. I got through a good chunk of the game, and I have a lot of scattered thoughts about it. If for some reason you’re actually concerned with the plot of a Yoshi platformer, then don’t worry, because there are no spoilers.

I had heard good things about the game, and I loved the original Super Nintendo Yoshi’s Island, so I figured I would enjoy this one as well. Right off the bat, I loved that it kept the same graphical style, but I was also sad that none of the first game’s music was used. The new score just isn’t sticking with me, at least thus far. But it still felt like I was playing more Yoshi’s Island, at least until Baby Peach’s introduction. That’s when the play style really started to stand out on its own. Mario has an affinity for blocks, while Peach can float around with her umbrella. There are probably other differences between the two of them, but they’ve been too subtle for me to notice. Baby Donkey Kong, on the other hand… He is clearly heavier and seems to hinders Yoshi’s moves, but he has a dashing move that smashes certain obstacles, and he can climb and swing vines. He feels like the most fleshed out character because of all that, but I wonder if that will change as the game goes on.

On one hand, I’m glad that this game makes your passengers useful and unique, but since they’re such an integral part of the gameplay, it also seems to take some of the focus off of Yoshi himself. Not that I’m some Yoshi fanatic (though he is one of my favorites in Mario Kart games), but it’s somewhat odd for a game that’s supposed to star Yoshi. But it’s not like Yoshi’s totally out of the spotlight either. I like that his transformations (helicopter, mole/tank, etc) have made a comeback.

Also, as an older DS game, I was worried there would be a lot of crappy touchscreen gimmicks, but the main game pretty much never requires the stylus. Instead, the controls are pretty much identical to the SNES game (which I’m sure is more than one could say for its Gameboy Advance port, since the GBA lacked X and Y buttons). I do like the way the game makes use of the dual screens (treating it like one very tall screen), but it can be kind of annoying when you’re trying to find something that’s right in the middle of them. Especially when a room is too small to adjust your viewpoint up or down.

Speaking of finding things, I like that that element has also returned, and with the addition of baby coins. Much like its predecessor, the main game mode feels rather easy, and the real challenge is finding all the coins and flowers. I think the only level I’ve gotten a 100 on thus far is 1-1. I do try to collect everything, but I’d rather progress and finish the story before I go back and try to get 100 on each level. I’ve still never finished that in the first game, but maybe someday I’ll fully complete both.

Not that I’ve finished Yoshi’s Island DS at all yet. I’m about halfway through the third world, and I think there are at least six worlds total…? I also only have three babies, and I swear I’ve read that there are four (Baby Wario, I think?). Not sure how soon I’ll get to the rest of the game, because my power has since come back, and I was in the middle of many other things when it went out (including other blog write-ups and video games). But I’m sure I’ll do at least one follow-up post to this one.

Oh, and the third world is very water centric. Which means there are pirate Shy Guys, and floaty tube Shy Guys. So good.

Tags: , ,

Categories: Log, Video Games

Comments are closed.