Last week, Nintendo held its first Nintendo Direct of the year. When big gaming companies do that, I like to at least keep up with the happenings, even though I can’t watch them at work because I don’t want to make the IT people mad at me.
There was a lot of info we got in that Direct (this great article from Polygon has the full list of announcements), but the one I was really interested in? The demo for Yoshi’s Crafted World.
Which I immediately downloaded, played, and fell in love with. Next step, pre-order.
Yoshi’s Crafted World: All-new material
Yes, pun intended.
Those of you who read my review of Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World know how much I love the little dinosaur and the adorable new directions he’s getting for games. And when I heard that there’d be a new one for the Switch this year, I knew I’d have to get it. But I didn’t do too much research at the time, because I didn’t have a Switch and I didn’t want to torment myself.
I was almost expecting Yoshi’s Crafted World to be a rehash of the fun yarn we got for the 3DS, with knitted versions of beloved characters and sets.
But that was not the case. This time around, it looks like the creators raided my mom’s kindergarten craft cabinet to create a perfectly papered and washi-taped world. Seriously. It’s bright, it’s colourful, and it’s got clothespin-trunked trees everywhere.
In terms of actual game material, it looks to be fairly traditional; Yoshi runs around, eats baddies, turns them into eggs, and throws them at their friends. It sounds terrible when I say it like that, but it’s really fun!
It’s also got a new dimension.
I’ve been playing Yoshi games for a looong time, and unlike Mario, my little green pal has always stayed staunchly in the sidescroller world. The games have nearly always been 2D worlds, with flat structures and things to aim at.
This time, it looks like there’s gonna be an expansion.
I’m terrible at classifications, and I’m probably wrong about this, but Yoshi’s Crafted World is basically set in a 3D environment. You’re still limited in where you can go in traditional sidescroller style, but in addition to running sideways and climbing obstacles in your way, you can also run perpendicular to the traditional sideways.
It takes a bit to get used to, especially with such a different-looking environment, because you don’t always know what you’re looking for. But it’s really cool!
And that also means a new element of play.
Naturally, Yoshi’s typical method of throwing eggs (holding R and waiting for the indicator to reach the right angle) doesn’t work in a 3D environment. I mean, you’re not going to sit there and wait while the egg indicator basically does a laser scan in all directions for something it can hit.
So the solution?
You can actually aim your eggs. It’s the first time we’ve ever been able to do that in a Yoshi game, and while there is a part of me that misses the little bleeping of the indicator, I am so happy with this improvement!
The Poochy Pups are reprising their role, too.
In Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World, players can choose to play in a casual mode, which means Yoshi gets wings (so he can’t run out of steam and fall to his death), and a little trio of Poochy Pups that act like returning eggs.
I’m not gonna lie, I love playing in this mode. But mostly because the pups are such show-stealers!
All in all, I’m really excited for the return of Yoshi, new material and all! Now I’m going to have to find a way to survive until the actual release in March—and however long it is until Nintendo comes out with a new felted Yoshi amiibo.