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Yoshi's Island: Super Mario Advance 3 [GBA]





One of the best handheld games money can buy.

10

Editors' Choice
Difficulty:
Just Right
Time Spent:
100 or More Hours
The Bottom Line:
"Amazing"

Summary

I can't even remember when I got this. I must have been playing it before middle school. And you know what? I still love it! The game just doesn't age! This has got to be one of my favorite gba-no, handheld games of all time. The fact that they were able to improve an already great snes game on a handheld system is a true example of quality.

Graphics: Simply lovely. The cartoonish style suits Yoshi perfectly, and the crayon-esque backgrounds make the island look like something that sprung out of our imaginations as kids. This game looked superb 15 years ago on the snes, and looks superb now on the gba. The animations are all well-done, and the little things, like the running and flutter jumping sprites, make this only make it all better.

Music: Do I need to say anything? This is Nintendo music at its finest, from the laid-back melody of the first level to the energetic athletic theme that plays during my favorite level (the skiing one!!!). It has been improved from its predecessor to include better-sounding instruments and more of them, making a game with already great music sound even better.

Sound design: Great. The fact that they added in voice acting for Yoshi is wonderful, as now we can hear the trademark "maaaouugh" whenever we flutter-jump or the "hup!" whenever we jump. However, they also added voice acting for baby mario. They made it so players would try their hardest to get back baby mario whenever he is lost, by making him cry whenever he falls off yoshi. It's annoying, but it serves its purpose.

Gameplay: Awesome! Unlike traditional run & jump mario games, you can actually turn enemies into weapons (note that I don't count super mario bros 2/doki doki panic as a traditional mario game) by swallowing them and turning them into eggs, aka high-speed ricocheting projectiles. This adds a whole new level of depth to puzzles and battles never before seen in a mario game, and is very well-implemented. The platforming itself is some of the best in the mario series, and is widely varied. There can be levels filled with platforms that begin falling as soon as you step on them, the platforms that immediately start moving once you step on them, and the traditional scrolling level for the old style. However, new styles are added, such as using ghosts with platforms as heads to traverse tricky courses, using eggs to create paths, and my favorite: skiing. That's right, there is a skiing level, and it is awesome!! In total, the gameplay rocks. In addition, the replay value for this game is great, as each level has a number of flowers, red coins, and stars to collect, which add up to a total score that can go up to 100, the maximum possible. Trying to get 100 on every level is a very difficult venture, and may have some playing for weeks.

Overall: if you want to experience the quality that made Nintendo such a great and well-respected company in the late 80's/early 90's, then this is the game for you. Buy it.




If you don't like this game then you have no soul.

9.5

Editors' Choice
Difficulty:
Easy
Time Spent:
10 to 20 Hours
The Bottom Line:
"Just plain fun"

Summary

Besides making new games Nintendo made NES and SNES remakes on the Gameboy Advance since the handheld had the same power level as them. You had the Classic NES games, A Link to the Past, and the Mario advance series. In the Mario advance series there were Super Mario Bros 2, Super Mario Bros 3, Super Mario World and finally Super Mario World 2 with Yoshi as the main character.

Here's a story that happened long ago. Trouble arrives at Yoshi's island. Kamek, Baby Bowsers minion, has kidnapped Baby Mario and Baby Luigi. Unfortunatly Kamek dropped Baby Mario but was able to carry Baby Luigi to Baby Bowsers Castle. By coincidence Mario arrived at eight different colored Yoshi's. The Yoshi's then set out at the six different worlds to find Mario's missing brother.

If you've played a Mario game then don't think this has the same formula with other levels because it's really different then that! Yoshi's is goal is to go from point A to point B just like in the Mario series but there are a lot differences on the way. Trust me on this.

Let's talk about Yoshi's abilities first. There is no way you can deny that Yoshi was fun to use in Mario World but in here it's even better. Just like in Mario World you can swallow an enemy with the B-button. You can either spit him back out by pressing the B-button again or swallowing him by pressing down. By doing that Yoshi will lay an egg. Yoshi can throw and egg with the R-button. It gives Yoshi a pointer that moves automaticly up and down and press R again for finally throwing them. Pressing the A-button allows Yoshi to jump and by pressing that same button again will extend it a but more.Yoshi can also stomp by jumping and the pressing down. Usefull to brake crates or do more damage. Ocassionally Yoshi can transform temparily into a vehicly like a car, helicopter or digging machine until he reaches a Yoshi Block. When he touches the block he will get his true form back and won't be able to turn back.

Enemies vary from slime, koopa's, Shy Guys, Fuzzy Clouds, Piranha Plants, Boo's, Clowns, Goomba's Seagulls, Baseball players, Zomby Seagulls and there's even more then that!

Great levels design and lots of enemies to chew on. What more do you want?
Yoshi's abilities are put to good use but despite a large cast enemies, Yoshi's island is easy, very easy. If you pay some at least attention to the screen it won't be hard to dodge your enemies attacks. Even the bosses are easy! If you do get hit then Baby Mario and Yoshi get seperated. Baby Mario then starts floating in a giant bubble crying around with a timer of 10 seconds. When the timer reaches zero Baby Mario gets caught by Baby Bowsers enemies. Luckily you can extend the timer up to 30 by collecting star points that are found throughout the level. The only way I ever died in the game was that I accidentally fell in a pit, lava or nails since those take care of an instant death.

There's one problem of this game and that should be the uncollectables collectables. I'm serious. It's virtually impossible to complete Yoshi's island one hundred percent. You get up to 100 points from each stage. In the stages you can collect 5 flowers, 30 Star points and 20 red coins that are disguised as golden coins. Since you have to collect 30 Star points that means you're not allowed to get hit too! Levels are tricky to navigate and most of these items are hard to find. What's worse is that you have to find all of them again if you missed one of them. It's basicly impossible since this game has six worlds with each 8 levels.

Even despite all the fancy 3D graphics seen in today's modern games it's hard not to be impressed by its fabulous graphics. The game's colorfull backgrounds are nicely done and look somewhat like something you'd expect from a storybook. All the various creatures--not to mention Yoshi himself--are very well animated and filled with lots of personality.

The game's multiplayer mode is merely the same remake of the classic Mario Bros. game that's been featured in both previous Super Mario Advance titles, which is somewhat disappointing but that's probably one of the not-so-many-faults.

Simply put Yoshi's Island is the classic it was a few years ago. Charming graphics, good gameplay, UNCOLLECTABLE COLLECTABLES and Um... Well just get that game! I garantee that you won't regret it!




Yoshi's Island is still just as good, with beautiful visuals and new features and levels.

10

Editors' Choice
Difficulty:
Just Right
Time Spent:
20 to 40 Hours
The Bottom Line:
"Masterpiece"

Summary

Remember Yoshi's Island, that awesome SNES game? Well, it's back on the GBA, and it's better than ever. Along with all the catchy music and amazing aesthetics of the original, the GBA version comes with six new levels, new features, and now you can play Yoshi's Island in the car!

Graphics: 10/10
Beautiful crayon-inspired visuals. The backgrounds look like drawings right from a children's storybook. All the different grounds are lush and colorful, the enemies are cute, and the environments are just great. Birds are flying around, the sun is setting, the forest is full of critters, and caves are filled with crystals, fungi, and strange plants.

Sounds: 9/10
Yoshi's makes cute little baby sounds and goes "Rrrrrrr" when he's fluttering. The Shy Guys go "Heave, ho" and the birds tweet. It's all very adorable. Baby Mario's crying, however, gets on my nerves.

Music: 8/10
All the great, catchy music you remember from the SNES game. It would have been nice to have had some new music, too, but I guess it's okay.

Gameplay: 10/10
The platforming and puzzles are just as fun as ever. Yoshi uses his egg throwing abilities in unique challenges and puzzles. Every level is very creative.

Level Design: 10/10
Every level presents a unique challenge. "Marching Milde's Fort" requires you to hunt down four keys in four special, deadly rooms: Lava, Spikes/Bandits, Spike Plants, and Spike Runners. "Poochy Ain't Stupid" has you ride a hyperactive dog across a cave flooded with lava. "Chomp Rock Zone" has you roll a stone ball around the level, using it to reach special areas. "Hit that Switch!" requires you to stomp a series of switches while racing through the level before they wear off.
The GBA game comes with six all new levels not found in the SNES version. These levels, called "Secrets," are insanely difficult masterpieces, full of enemies, hazards, and mile-wide pits.

Replay Value: 10/10
These levels are so cool and fun, you'll want to play them over and over again. However, the ultimate goal in Yoshi's Island is to collect every single item (100 pts) in every single level. This is an unbelievably hard task that you will spend hours trying to accomplish.

In conclusion, this is game is pretty much perfect, full of awesome content and fun playing. Anyone who missed out on the SNES classic should undubitably get this game. This is the must-have GBA game.




A remake which you could say is better than the original.

9.5

Editors' Choice
Difficulty:
Just Right
Time Spent:
10 to 20 Hours
The Bottom Line:
"Old-school"

Summary

Yoshis Island appeared on the SNES in the later days and was one big game which indeed had excellent gameplay so how does it hold up.

Story

Well a Stork is delivering a pair of baby brothers but is attacked by Kamek the Magikoopa who grabs one of the babies but the who drops onto Yoshis Island. Realising he missed one of the brothers he sents out his magikoopa out to find him and get him back because he believes these brothers will cause their baby king in the long run. The baby the Yoshis have seems to know what happened to his brother so the adventure begins.

Gameplay

The game is split into 6 worlds of 8 levels. 2 Fortresses and 2 bosses. The game has alot of the familar Mario Brothers things like Stars,Piranha plants,Shu Guys and Coins. For each level the goal is to get to the end. Though there is other things like collecting 20 Red Coins throughout the stage,5 Sunflowers and 30 Gold stars bits. Your life is the Stars and once you are hit you will hear a constant crying from Baby Mario and you have to get him back before the time hits zero or else you lose a life. Also if you are below 10 Stars at that time it resets itself to 10 slowly but if you are 10 then it stays as it is. So getting to 30 Stars without getting damaged can be a daunting task.

You are certainly not without power ups. Yoshi can spit seeds,use fireballs and even freeze things. He can also get them from bonus levels but you need to make the goal to land on a SunFlower so you can either gain lives or get items. You have an inventory meaning you can use those items at anytime except for bosses.. You get to transform into a plane,Tractor and even a Submarine and they are crucial for getting past certain areas. You need to hit the Yoshi box at the end.

Some of the earilier levels are a bit of a cakewalk but later levels will have you hunting for keys and going into different doors or pipes so the challenge I'd say is fair. Some of the levels are just downright awesome one is if you eat Fuzzie you end up dizzy and the screen goes all over the place and makes it hard to control. The bosses are the standout. In one you will be facing something big another you might be inside a frogs belly and another in the sky. The last boss I will not lie is epic. You also get other levels opened after you finish the game as well and they can be challenging. Some enemies can be a pain and sometimes Baby Mario can annoying crying when hit.

Sound and Graphics

Still looks lovely for a GBA well presented and a very good job by Nintendo at the end. It has a lovely soundtrack and fits with the game as well epsically the beginning.

Lastability

It's a long game the levels are massive and you will die a couple time in the later levels.

Overall Opinion

Still a joy to play even now. A big 2D platformer with plenty of charm and character and it is a very good remake. If you never played the original on the SNES play this one.

Overall Score 9.4




Yoshi's Island superb level design, presentation and unique gameplay make it worth its title of Super Mario World 2

9.5

Editors' Choice
Difficulty:
Just Right
Time Spent:
40 to 100 Hours
The Bottom Line:
"Just plain fun"

Summary

When Super Mario World was released with the SNES back in 1991, people were excited with the new adventure. It was just epic, with everything you wanted in a Mario game and more. A few years latter, Super Mario World 2 was released, and focused on Mario's buddy Yoshi. How does it fares? Let's see.

GRAPHICS:
Looking at this game, you can see the differences between the first and second Mario World games. The grahpics here are very detailed, the animation is incredibly fluent and the backgrounds are pretty and varied. 5/5

SOUND:
The music from this game is, like the previous games in the franchise, fantastic. Some tunes, like Athelic, just are some of the happiest things you will ever listen is a video game, and all of them just seem very fitting for their moments.

However, one thing has to be mentioned, and that is the ear-rape that is Baby Mario's cry when you lose him, which is just painful to listen to, since it is so loud and high pitched. Still, it is better to play this game with the volume on to listen to the awesome music. 4.5/5

GAMEPLAY:
The game is a 2D plataformer. You play as Yoshi, trying to get Baby Mario back to his parents, avoiding Kamek's traps, and trying to save Baby Luigi in the meantime. The plot is really just there and has little to no bearing in this game.

If you have played any Mario game before, it is not going to help in this game, since it has totaly different mechanics. As Yoshi, you have to go through the levels eating enemies, turning them into eggs so you can use them to battle other enemies and solve puzzles and find out secrets. Not only are the mechanics in this game unique, but they settled a legacy of their own, as games staring Yoshi would follow this formula latter on.

There are 8 world with 6 levels in each of them, totaling 32 levels, which is the same as the first game in the series. If you liked World's open world structure and finding secret endings at levels, you will be rather disapointed, because this game scraps that formula to a menu with al the levels and you choose there. Some may see that as a bummer, but it really is the way of the game, and it works out very well. Besides that, there are also two secret levels in each world (only one on the SNES version).

Like with the other Super Mario Advanced game, the controls had to be suited to the GBA, and they were mapped very well. You use B to jump, A to use your tongue to get enemies, press down to swallow them and in mid air down does a ground pound, and the R trigger to lauch the eggs. It works out perfectly and you never miss the two extra buttons the SNES controler had.

Games on the series where you controled Mario had a hit system based on the power ups you had. In this game your life bar is determined at the amount of stars you have. If you lose them all, you lose Baby Mario and lose a life. But really, getting stars is easy, since you will always have at least 10 and middle mosts in this game give you more 10. So the challenge in that term is low, but the level design make up for that, gradualy increasing the difficulty level. Some of the latter levels can be very tricky to master, speacialy the bonus levels.

Besides the stars, there are also red coins and flowers to get in the game, and getting them will determine your score for the level, and you need a certain one to get the bonus levels. Besides the level design, we also have two bosses per world, and they are mostly easy, but are all unique in a way, and all very fun.

All in all, the gameplay feels complete, and the mechanics are just plain fun,
5/5

OVERALL:
Yoshi's Island is a rather different game, but one that every gamer should consider playing. It has some amazing level design, is really fun and has great music. Anyone with a GBA or SNES should pick this up.

The good:
-Incredible level design that amps the dificulty level gradually
-Some of the best video game music ever
-Pretty visuals
-Unique gameplay that is just a lot of fun
-Quite a few levels, each different from the last

The bad:
-Baby Mario's cry will haunt your sleep
9.2

Editors' Choice
9.1
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