Review by Spektre

"An amazing looking adventure without those annoying Yoshi voices!"

SMW 2: Yoshi's Island is sadly better than its somewhat sequel, Yoshi's Story. There are no annoying voices to drive you nuts (besides Baby Mario's crying), and each tune in every stage is different from the others. Plus, some of the most stunning looking hand-drawn graphics are presented right in front of our eyes. Yoshi can now transform into forms that helps our hero- who is actually NOT the hero- to find the stork. The stork? Yes, this time around, Mario is a baby. Taking place far before the original, Baby Mario and his ''twin'' brother have been seperates, due to the intervention of a Magikoopa by the name of Kamek. Since Kamek feels like being such a pain in the butt, the Yoshis decide to reunite the brothers once again so they can be delivered safely to their destination. So how does this fare with the original? Do you ever see Baby Luigi? How come this time they're twins? ONTO THE REVIEW!!!

GRAPHICS: Stunning and dazzling. Practically every little sprite dancing on your screen is hand-drawn. The backgrounds are beautiful- like some mysterious coloring book. The foregrounds look like some little kid drew them, but they're supposed to look that way- and they look GREAT! There are many colored Yoshis at your disposal, and they all look awesome. Every stage is set up different from the one before it. All of the enemies are made byb hand also, and those monkeys will drive you nuts. The areas range from jungles to mountains to ruined castles. When you meet with the really huge bosses, you wonder how Yoshi fits on the screen. Every animation is smooth and flows nicely throughout the game. Baby Mario looks like a comic strip kid. All of the Yoshi transformations are really...neat. (Notice loss of descriptive words...) Generally, the whole new look for the Mario genre may be a bit shocking, but you'll be glad how the game shifted in this direction. (10/10)

STORY: I sort of ran through it in the first paragraph, but I'll do it again. Mario and Luigi are being carried by the stork through the dawning sky to their destination of Brooklyn. They must first go over the isle known as Yoshi's Island in order to reach Brooklyn. Suddenly, out of the blue, a streak whizzes by and snatches one baby and drops the other. The streak was actually Kamek, a Magikoopa for the newly born Baby Bowser. He was going to use Luigi as a personal playmate. The tumbling baby, though, was our buddy with the red hat, Mario. He plops square on the back of a passing Yoshi. The Yoshi hides the child in the jungle in order to keep him away from the reigning Bowser's claws. After discussing things with the other Yoshis, they all decide to pass on the baby Yoshi-by-Yoshi to Bowser's Castle so the two brothers can be reunited. But will they make it through Kamek's barrage of magic, transforming once humble residents in monsterous slaves? It's still the whole save the day type of deal... (7/10)

GAMEPLAY/CONTROL: It might seem like a cinch at first, but believe me, you will be repeating stages constantly. The first world is a bit of a warm-up so you can get used to the mechanics of the game, where the rest build on the challenge and secrets. Each boss has a certain weakness, so you must try different manuevers with your egg-throuwing and use the items around you. Sometimes you'll end up searching the entire stage 20 times in order to find a key or hit a switch or find that special item. The game really gets you involved. Many new things have been added this time around to the Mario gaming series that were not in the previous Mario World. For examplee, instead of spitting fire, Yoshi now uses a unique aiming system to toss eggs at his foes. It is, strangely, much more affective than the system in Yoshi's Story. Now you aren't racing the clock; instead, you are racing to get Mario to the goal area, all while collecting Red Coins and flowers. If you get hit at any point, more will be knocked off of Yoshi's back. There is a timer in the corner that counts how many seconds he can be off of you before Kamek captures him. To fill up this guage, you collect the red coins and regular coins. One of the main goals of every stage is to get a grade at the the of 100. Getting a 100 in every world is one of the greatest challenges around, but it is well worth it. Flowers allow you to get bonus stages at the end of a stage at the goal ring, plus add a ton to your percentage. Getting a 100 in each stage of a world results in an ultra hard bonus stage. Beating these will- well, I won't tell ^_^ There is a lot more I could mention, but I'm sure you'd like to figure it out yourself. (10/10)

SOUND/MUSIC: Some happy tunes are floating through the air in this game, but some are very nice and catchy. I loved the first stage and underground themes. There are MANY songs in this game compared to the original SMW. On the map, every time you proceed to a new world, an instrument is added to the little theme song. It ends up being very nice! The sounds are realistic and great. (10/10)

OTHER STUFF:
-Players: 1. No two player this time around...
-Fun Factor: 9. Some people may not enjoy Mario's look, but that doesn't mean the game is bad at all!
-Replay Value: 10. Working for those 100's is a very tough task- if you get them, e-mail me and you'll get my personal congrats!
-Rent or Buy: Try to buy it if you can, or rent it repeatedly.

Many have protested against the whole change in Mario's look, exclaiming it was way too little-kiddy and childish. But it's just the opposite. This game is tough and not to be underestimated. Do not believe what those game bashers tell you- it's great. The only reason I gave it a 9 is because, yes, it is a bit different from the usual Mario. Some may not like it, but I love it, but it isn't the Mario we all know and love...or is it?

OVERALL: 9/10


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 03/02/00, Updated 03/02/00


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