Yoshi's Crafted World is, on the whole, a game on the 'easier' end of the difficulty scale. Not unlike recent Mario adventures, but perhaps to a more extreme extent, simply reaching the end goal of the game is relatively simple, with the main challenge for more experienced players coming from collecting every single flower.
In the latest issue of Nintendo Dream, assistant producer on the game, Nobuo Matsumiya, has discussed the reasoning behind its difficulty. He mentions "aiming for a difficulty that allows players to have fun", and talks about how the game's Mellow Mode helps all types of players enjoy the experience.
How difficult did you make the game?
Matsumiya: Because we want people to enjoy the Yoshi world we have created, we were aiming for a difficulty that allows players to have fun. Even though the game is designed around collecting flowers in order to advance to the next area, within each course it’s not only about the flowers but also the Poochy puppies on the reverse side, as well as finding all those crafting materials. That means players can play the levels over and over to collect everything.
But finding everything is a challenge in itself.
Matsumiya: That’s right. That’s why we have also added the Mellow Mode (where Yoshi can use wings to fly around the stage and takes less damage) and the ability to change the difficulty. While there may be some players wanting the same play challenge as Yoshi’s Island, I think there may also be players who want to enjoy the world but find the gameplay bewildering. Because of that, we thought about how we could help out those using the more casual Yoshi. So, for example we have a notification sound play when those players are close to flowers as a hint until they find it, so that we aren’t taking away that excitement of discovery.
Of course, the difficulty of games has been a highly debated topic in recent times, mostly thanks to the release of Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. Having an optional easy mode in a game like Yoshi's Crafted World definitely makes sense to us, and the Switch is hardly spoilt for choice when it comes to hard-as-nails platformers, so we're all for it.
But what do you think? Should all games have adjustable difficulty settings? Do you find things like Yoshi's Mellow Mode useful? Let us know in the comments.