Video Game Thoughts: Yoshi’s Woolly World

Yoshi’s Woolly World was a 2015 platformer game by Good Feel for the Wii U. This game caught me by surprise. I was just reading the news about Nintendo’s upcoming games one day and happened to see this one. I loved the graphics at first sight. Everything in the game was made out of yarn from the backgrounds to the enemies to Yoshi himself. Some adults would consider the graphics too childish, but I didn’t mind at all. This was exactly the kind of game I was looking for. The gameplay didn’t seem to be the best, but it still looked fun.

Yoshi’s Woolly World lived up to my expectations and more. The graphics looked even better on the TV screen with all the bright colors and smooth animations. The whole world was made to look like it was in someone’s house. Several tables were laid out with all the yarn stuff placed on top. It was like someone gifted in knitting created their own personal Yoshi room. In the story a wizard named Kamek used his magic wand to steal all of the Yoshis’ yarn. Each of them were made up of five skeins of yarn. Only two Yoshis survived. It was up to the player (and possibly a friend) to retrieve all the skeins to rescue all the Yoshis.

The game was made up of six worlds. Each world had potentially nine levels, though one level was secret and took a while to unlock. The player only needed to complete the first eight levels to unlock the next world. Each world had fun if typical themes like forest, snow, and lava. The difficulty of each level slowly got harder. In the beginning, the levels were a breeze, but by the end, I really needed a lot of retries to progress. I didn’t like that each world had the same number of levels, but I liked that every level was pretty unique. Some of the backgrounds might be similar, but they all had new mechanics to keep my brain busy learning new things. The length of the game was perfect too. I had expected it to be about five worlds. It was a pleasant surprise when the sixth and last world was introduced.

It was interesting to compare Yoshi’s Woolly World with Yoshi’s Island. That game was from the old Super Nintendo, but I had been able to play it from the Wii U’s eShop. I found the gameplay to be very similar between the two. In addition, both games had similar stories and the same number of worlds. Woolly World was a tad easier. This was especially evident with the collecting.

In Yoshi’s Island, the player had to collect all the special items in one go at a level. If I wanted all the collectibles but missed one item, I had to do the whole level over again meticulously collecting everything again. In Yoshi’s Woolly World, the game kept track of which collectables I had found in each level. I only had to collect the missing ones to have that level totally finished. Several times there were just a few items missing. It was much easier to just focus on those few items and ignore the rest.

Yoshi’s Woolly World was easier, but the difficulty was still good enough for me. I always thought having to do everything in one go in Yoshi’s Island was a little too tedious. Woolly World focused more on thinking while Yoshi’s Island focused more on perfect execution. Yoshi’s Woolly World still had some really hard levels to collect everything in, but most levels were manageable after I got a hang of the new things they introduced.

I really enjoyed everything about Yoshi’s Woolly World. In the past, I might have been disappointed about the length or the difficulty — for example, it wasn’t as long as Super Mario 3D World — but for where I’m at now, it was perfect. There was just enough there to keep me busy for about a month’s worth of free time. Had it lasted longer, I would have felt pressured to play more to finish it in a more timely fashion. As is, it ended exactly when I wanted it to end. The Wii U has not been the most perfect console compared to the other gaming consoles I have had, but it’s still probably the best one for me these days. Nintendo’s games consistently impress me. The other game consoles have the more serious, mature games, but that’s not what I’m looking for anymore.

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