Hands On Preview: Yoshi’s Crafted World

On Thursday the 14th February, Nintendo dropped the Yoshi’s Crafted World demo on the world. The day before we got to have a bit of an extra hands experience to see how finely crafted the latest Yoshi game really is.

Chances are you’ve seen the trailer, or even some footage from a Nintendo Treehouse Direct. If not, Yoshi’s Crafted World expands even further on the previous Yoshi’s Wooly World premise. From a world heavily based around wool, Crafted World goes all out and Yoshi’s world resembles a kids ultimate art and craft project.

The first level we got to play is the same found in the demo, which allows you to fully explore that level as well as experiencing a ‘flip side’ version of the level. One of the first things that struck me was how much attention to detail there is in this ‘handcrafted’ world. The first thing that is super small but still made an impression was how the cardboard on platforms is springy when you jump or jump from underneath. There’s no reason for Nintendo to go all out like that, it is just part of the charm the game has oodles of. If you’ve played almost any Yoshi platformer you know what to expect here (or can experience playing the demo).

We found straight away that it’s important to pay attention to what’s in the foreground and background. When you go to fire an egg the aiming cursor will light up available targets, which is handy for making sure you’re not firing eggs at everything around you. For the part we played there was less of that frustrating having to check every single bit of the level for hidden ? Clouds holding collectables.

It was mentioned to us that there is scaling difficulty but it’s a bit unclear, if it was from the better you do the harder the game will get. Or if it’s just going to get progressively difficult as the levels go on. For people who love the gameplay and styles of Kirby and Yoshi games but find previous ones a bit too easy, Crafted World seems like it will put you to the test. While the first level was easy, the following weren’t as easy to breeze through if you wanted to get all the collectibles.

2-player mode is going to be different for everyone. Will it be a fun co-op experience or will it be a friendship-destroying nightmare?! While Luke was having a good time throwing the red Yoshi around, I was the red Yoshi, and when the other player grabs your Yoshi they also take away all the eggs you carried on you. The two levels we played weren’t enough to really get a hang of things. One of us would wind up piggybacking the other Yoshi or just getting thrown around. As with the Super Mario Bros Wii/Wii U, it can feel like chaos, but when you’re playing outside of time restricted preview it should be easier to work together.

The ‘flip side’ version of the levels was an interesting addition to the usual level. As Luke said, we could see behind the scenes. As you may have also seen in the demo, this version of the level has you starting from the end of the normal level and working your way back through to the beginning. It adds another dimension to the levels (although it’s unclear if it’s every level), including another stylish decision in being able to see what objects were used to make the crafty scenery.

You can also be asked to perform certain tasks in Yoshi’s Crafted World. We didn’t get to see this feature during the visit, but it was mentioned and also present in the demo. In the demo, you’re tasked with knocking over 5 cows in the level. Once you accomplish it you have the choice of leaving the level instead of having to do it all. Like with the flip side versions, there seems to be more to each level than just getting 100% on the normal mode.

Overall Yoshi’s Crafted World so far has been great. If you’re unsure, as mentioned a few times please check out the demo. From what I’ve seen I look forward to finding out in what ways Crafted World might change the usual Yoshi formula.

Getting invited to the Nintendo Australia office is like being invited to visit Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, except with more offices and less chocolate, but still, located within are rooms that are packed with Nintendo themed goodies and on the recent visit, Yoshi’s Crafted World. 

It is important to note that what was played, was more than the demo that Nintendo released after the Direct, though that level was played as well. If you have already played the demo, then you know what to expect, though if you have played a Yoshi game, you also know what to expect, as the gameplay is quite similar as previous games that star the delightful green guy. Perhaps the biggest change, which took me a moment to adjust to, is the shooting/throwing egg mechanic that the game has, there are two modes, Hasty, which is the one that people will remember and Patient, which lets you free aim the cursor. The two egg tossing modes, along with the two play styles mean that anyone can play. 

What I really liked was the two-player mode, something which I have not really done a lot of in the past, here though it was fun and made sense. Of course, the first thing that I did was eat the Red Yoshi, that was running alongside with me, but as we were playing the flipside of the level Poochy’s Tape Trail, we got to see behind the scenes, literally. No only were we seeing the backside of all the objects that we had run past before, but we were also on the hunt for the Poochy pups, that were hiding around the place. The simple change that if one Yoshi is on the back of the other, the eggs you can throw are unlimited, making it very easy for a younger player to join in the action. 

The folks at Nintendo were kind enough to let me know that the game does get very, very challenging towards the end, so I am looking forward to experiencing that, but for now, the bright art style and more laid back approach to the game, has me wanting to craft up some adventures, but sadly I have to wait until March, then again, there is always that demo.

Yoshi’s Crafted World is out March 29th, you can find a bargain for it already here. Thanks to Nintendo Australia for letting us check it out early.

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When more than one of the Vooks team writes something together we use this account to publish it. No mere single account can hold us all.

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