Cry, Baby Mario! Cry loudly, because that's clearly what everyone loves about this franchise... oh wait, it's Yoshi!
In Yoshi's New Island
, you again take on the role of everyone's favorite enemy-to-egg transformation device and rideable dinosaur, Yoshi. Baby Mario remains as annoying as ever, when knocked from his back by enemy contact. You eat enemies and somehow Yoshi turns them into eggs, which you would think would make him a girl dinosaur, yet we constantly refer to Yoshi as a he. Yoshi, like Birdo before him, is apparently trans, and that's very progressive and forward thinking of a Nintendo game.
In any case, Yoshi's New Island is Yoshi-tastic. You shoot eggs at stuff, which you accumulate either from a block at the beginning of the level or consuming enemies and squirting 'em out the back. New to the franchise is a giant egg that can blast through obstacles and collect the coins in that direction.
At the end of the demo level, a Magikoopa casts a spell on a Fang (a bat enemy) turning it huge as the level boss. It surrounds itself with a ring of regular-sized fangs that you can use for fodder to shoot eggs at the boss (if they don't knock Mario off your back). Blast him the standard three times, avoid his angry spinning after being hit, and down he goes, his denouement pronounced in overtones of cuteness and delight.
Built for the 3DS, Yoshi's New Island
is similar to New Super Mario Bros. 2
in its 2.5D presentation. The world and characters look like they are built in 3D, but it maintains the same side-scrolling action that the series is known for. The children's book aesthetic is still present, but it's an odd mix with the 3D visuals that takes a little getting used to. If anything, it's too
detailed, with the different painted mediums almost drawing attention from the game.
Still, it's a gorgeous game that will likely be a welcome addition to fans of the series, and immediately familiar, but with some interesting new mechanics. It's slated for release in 2014 on the 3DS.