When I turned 7, my brother and I got this game for our birthday from my Nanny and Papa. My brother and I were super stocked when we got it because it had Yoshi in it and he was in Super Mario World! Once we got the game started I became a little disappointed because it turned out to be a puzzle game (and not a platform game) – but nevertheless have come to enjoy the game in short bursts!
In term of gameplay, Yoshi has some interesting mechanics. In this game, recognizable Mario enemies fall from the top of the screen. You control Mario along the bottom of the screen. You goal is to pair the enemies up into columns of at least two to cause them to disappear. By moving Mario around, you can cause the columns of enemies to switch spaces with others to help line the enemies and get rid of them. If the screen get filled up to the top – you loose!
The interesting mechanic occurs with the introduction of Yoshi eggs. The bottom Yoshi egg can start a tower of mixed enemies – up to six full enemies. If you can land the top piece of the egg on top of the tower of enemies with the bottom egg piece at the bottom, all the enemies will be displayed – it works kinda like a Tetris!
The game has three main modes – A, B, and multiplayers. In Mode A, players can play the game indefinitely in order to get a high score. In Mode B, players go through stages with the goal of clearing out the screens of pre-determined enemies. As you can see below, the further you progress, you can unlock little scenes of Yoshi eating various different items. While not especially rewarding, it is still fun to have some predetermined puzzles to solve! Despite the different modes and gameplay options, the single-player game is kind of boring and not nearly a deep as something like Tetris.
The multiplayer mode is where I had the most fun. Recently my brother and I played a couple of rounds and had a blast for about 30 minutes. In this mode, you rush to clear the screen – the first one to clear it wins! If the other player fails via filling the screen with enemies, the other players also wins! The first one to 3 wins wins the series!
The graphics in this game are very bland and simple. In some ways this is good because clarity is helpful in a puzzles games so you don’t mix of the pieces – but I still feel it could have used a bit more sparkle like interesting backgrounds or something! The music is also quite bland and boring – probably one of the worse soundtracks I’ve heard in an NES first-party Nintendo game. The sound effects are satisfying at times (especially when you get a full Yoshi-egg full of enemies) but besides that nothing special.
In summary, Yoshi is a simple but redundant puzzles game on NES. While the single player game can be quite boring at times, there is some fun to be had in multiplayer. Overall, I give this game a 6/10.
Final Score: 6/10