Review by Squid Vicious
"This doesn't deserve to have Super Mario World in its title."
Considering it's called Super Mario World 2, you'd think it would have something to do with the original game. It doesn't. Considering the 2 in the title, you'd think it's a sequel and that it improves on the original, one of the greatest games of all time. It doesn't. Yoshi's Island is a disappointment, whether you compare it to other Mario games or not. What made it more of a disappointment is that the company and development team that made it normally made such great games. Nintendo could've done better than this game.
I'm actually sort of split on the graphics. They do look very nice and use the SNES's hardware well, but at the same time, they don't look nice. They are colorful, well-designed, and very sharp and clear. My problem is that the ultra-childish look doesn't fit the game or Mario. I'm not going to say that the graphics are bad in any way (they aren't), but I can't say I like the childish style. If you like the childish style, you will like the graphics. However, I don't. Still, they get a 9, as a lot of time and effort was obviously put into them.
The music is nice and pleasant, if still a bit childish, but I loathe the sound effects. The music, as I said, is upbeat, slightly catchy, and cheerful. It's not for the castles, of course, but that would be off-setting. All in all, I like it, it being the music. To put it simply, I hate the sound effects. To go into more depth, Yoshi's little grunts and what have you when he jumps, gets hit by an enemy, or the like, are highly grating. And after the obnoxious sound Yoshi makes after getting hit, you get to hear Baby Mario crying. That's as bad, if not worse, than Yoshi's little grunts and the like. Also, it's not like you getting hit or jumping will be a rare thing. This is a Mario game (unfortunately), you know. So turn down the volume and miss the nice music, or hear it and suffer through the sound effects.
This is a Mario game (unfortunately), so it doesn't excel in story. However, it's not expected to, is it? The story is at least as cliche as the other Mario stories, which are basically saving the Princess. However, it's cliche in a different way, an irritatingly saccharine way. It could almost be a Rugrats-themed Mario game. It's a prequel to the other Mario games. A stork was carrying Baby Mario and Baby Luigi to their families, and Kamek the Magikoopa, a sorcerer of sorts who is a servant to the Koopa royal family or something of the like. Anyway, he foresees that Mario and Luigi will be lots of trouble for the baby Bowser when he grows up. Therefore, he orders some Koopas to go kidnap the babies from the stork. They do, but they only manage to kidnap Baby Luigi. The stork drops the other baby, who lands on a Yoshi's back. The Yoshis (wait...there only was one, the rest of the things that looked like him were his nameless friends) get together and decide to reunite Baby Mario with Baby Luigi. I don't think it's explained how they know about Baby Luigi, either. As well, Mario's supposed to be older than Luigi, so why the hell are they being delivered at the same time? To sum it up, yes, the story's bad. However, the main aspect of a Mario game isn't the graphics, it's the...
And is the gameplay bad, even though it is standard platforming gameplay, they managed to screw it up. First off, is the change that you have to protect Mario. Mario rides on Yoshi's back, and if Yoshi gets hit, Mario will fall off his back and start floating around in a bubble. If you don't get Mario back in 10 seconds, Koopas kidnap him and you lose a life (huh?). Replacing the traditional Mario damage system with something else is fine with me, but not if the new system is irritating at best. A few new innovations also included the watermelons, eggs, and transformations. The watermelons were fairly neat, as Yoshi would eat one and spit out seeds, which would hurt enemies. Also, there were fire and ice watermelons, the fire one would do the same thing as the ice watermelons and the ice one would freeze them, like the Ice Beam in the Metroid games, and were actually pretty cool (pun not intended). The eggs were what I guess supposed to replace the traditional fireballs Mario shot, but they weren't that good of an idea. The cursor for them moves up and down, and you have to wait until it points in the correct direction that you want the egg to shoot in to shoot the egg. And the eggs ricochet, which is the only neat thing about them. Normally, I'd just ignore them and stomp on enemy heads like usual, but you're forced to use the things for some boss fights. However, the transformations are insanely cool. Yoshi transforms into a car, submarine, plane, train, or helicopter for a few moments and moves around as one of them for a bit. It's fairly neat on its own, but the fact that you don't have to bother to hear the crappy sound effects is even better. However, that alone is not able to save the wreck that is this game.
Buy or Rent?
Now, this game is fairly old, being released in August 1995, so this section is only being added in for completion's sake. If you're a collector of sorts who wants to have all of the Mario games, that's the only time I'd recommend you buy the game. Otherwise, rent it. It's really not worth either, however.
Reviewer's Score: 2/10 | Originally Posted: 03/06/06
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