Yoshi (NES)

Game Review

Yoshi Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Philip J Reed

Soft boiled

Mario's loyal dinosaur companion Yoshi may have made his debut in the Super Nintendo classic Super Mario World, but one year later Nintendo gave him his own title on the rapidly fading NES. That game was Yoshi, and it's now come to non-Ambassadors on the 3DS eShop.

It's a falling block puzzler, which is a genre every video game character must star in at some point, we guess. However, it's not a simple question of matching tiles. You can do that, of course, but what you really need to shoot for in order to score big is a combination of tiles sandwiched between two halves of an egg. If you can pull that off you'll be rewarded with an avalanche of points — which of course grows larger the more tiles you've grouped together — and good old Yoshi will pork up a bit in the bottom right of your screen.

For those who haven't played the game before, that might sound confusing, so we'll explain a bit more. Unsurprisingly, tiles drop from the top of the screen and move towards the bottom. You have no control over their positioning, but you can control the plates below. This means that if a Goomba tile is falling in the left-hand column and you'd like it to land on another Goomba, or on the bottom half on an egg, which is in a different column, you can simply swap plates back and forth until it lands where you'd like it to be.

Matching two tiles of a kind will remove them both from play. Simple, right? That's where the egg halves come in.

The bottom half of an egg will simply take up space on your screen until a top half is stacked somewhere above it. No matter how many tiles are in between the two halves, the egg will come together, remove all interstitial tiles from play, and add to your score. So while you can play the game as a simple exercise in tile matching, it strongly behooves you to make use of these egg halves to their fullest potential. In doing so, of course, you run the risk of not receiving the top half in time, which can make the game feel a bit like recent eShop addition Bomb Monkey, with you hoping against hope to be dealt the one tile you need to survive before the stacks get too high and the game ends.

There are two single player modes, and one two-player mode. The single player modes consist of an endless option, in which you play until you inevitably overload a stack, and a stage-based mode, which sees you clearing all tiles from play, after which a congratulatory scene of Mario and his green steed plays for your delight.

The two-player mode, though, is where the main fun will be had. Featuring the welcome addition of Download Play, you and a friend can go head-to-head on a single copy of the game. This is definitely a great selling point.

However, the game itself simply isn't very addictive. While rotating stacks and reassembling eggs is definitely fun in short bursts, it starts to drag relatively quickly. The game increases in speed as you progress, but the increase is so gradual that you're likely to become bored before you're significantly challenged. The fact that you can close up your 3DS to play it again after a break definitely helps, but that doesn't change the simple fact that Yoshi never has that "grab factor" of the best falling block puzzlers, such as Tetris or Dr. Mario.

It's a good game, but far from a great one. The Download Play, we feel, warrants a purchase for those who don't already have it, but the game itself isn't likely to stay in your rotation for long.


The inclusion of Download Play definitely makes this version of Yoshi a bit more enjoyable than its bare-bones Ambassador release, but it's simply not as fast-paced or addictive as other falling block puzzlers. A great soundtrack and crisp visuals help the experience, but overall it's a pretty un-eggs-eptional game.

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User Comments (48)



traceman said:

this game really isn;t that bad but I also thought it was also on the gamebo(P.S. First)



Morpheel said:

Ahh my favorite NES game.

The game really does get frantic if you try to max several eggs at the same time.

I'll try the multiplayer later, thanks for the review.



Reala said:

Never liked this game, wario's woods and yoshi's cookie where so much better imo



Azikira said:

Wario's Woods was a superb game, it's sad you don't see it as much as this game anymore.



Squashie said:

Not the best review, I do like this game, so I may just pick it up regardless!



Xilef said:

This was released after Super Mario World right? It always confused me that Yoshi was on a NES game when his first appearence was in SMW.



rayword45 said:

You're being too nice to these retro games Chicken.

I'd give it one point lower. It's fun for short bursts, but pretty bad value and I personally thought the graphics were pretty ugly considering the time.



Brotagonist said:

I always confuse this game with Yoshi's Cookie. I don't really like that game though, so I think I'll skip this one.



retro_player_22 said:

Sadly this was the final NES I bought for my NES alongside Zoda's Revenge, Mega Man VI, Mighty Final Fight, and Dragon Warrior IV. Such awesome titles at the end of the NES lifespan.



OdnetninAges said:

I agree with this score.
Although, I did get hooked on it the first week of having on my ambassador 3DS.



C7_ said:

Holy crap, they finally did wireless play in the overlay!
I don't care if it's just an alright puzzler; THAT's a step in the right direction!
Of course I'm an ambassador so i already had it but still, hopefully they'll figure out online play in the overlay, and maybe high scores like they should've done with Balloon Fight.



Tasuki said:

Its a very addicting game but yeah it gets old really fast. I have this on the NES and Gameboy so if I want to play it that bad I will play those.



Pichuka97 said:

About 5 years ago, I came across this game for NES and thought it was a Mario Bros. styled game so I bought it and was utterly disappointed when I saw the game being a falling block puzzle type game. After I got over it, I actually kind of enjoyed it even if it is a bit lack luster. Still a decent game to this day. Now I just need to find the Game Boy version. Maybe Nintendo will release that next??



swordx said:

I have this on my GB and my 3DS...How could you give it a 6/10? This game is amazing!



HawkeyeWii said:

This is my most played ambassador game
I play on the fastest tempo for a good 2 hours straight before finally getting tired and making myself lose. Awesome game!



theblackdragon said:

i played sooooooooooooooo much of the GB version of this game back in the day. i might pick it up just for the hell of it, lol :3



Meaty-cheeky said:

This game was one of the 3DS ambassador downloads, I deleted Yoshi off my 3DS since I thought the game was lousy.

If you don't already have this game I wouldn't waste my money on it unless I was really into puzzle type games.



iphys said:

This game is really addictive, even if it's nowhere near as great as Tetris.



allav866 said:

I always preferred Yoshi's Cookie, and have fond memories of playing the 2-Player mode with my brother. For this, I still have the NES cart and a working NES with one controller, so unless I really want to play this in 2-P mode, I'm skipping this one.



grumblegrumble said:

I think you gave a good score considering what this game is up against these days, with all the 3Dware we are so used to, and there are much better block puzzle games out there (Tetris Axis is my current fave!) but back in the day, when this first came out, I'm sure it might have gotten a 7 or 8 out of 10. That's just how the world goes, though. I always find joy in these older games (as I know you do, too) since they are pretty much what led to the current innovations that we take for granted in this day and age. If it wasn't for these great games that have gone before, we wouldn't have what we have today.



jrpacman said:

It didn't seem to update my Ambassador version like the other releases. Has this happened for anyone else?



misswliu81 said:

i enjoyed tetris and dr mario - both games are very similar. yoshi is okay, but the gameplay can be frustrating sometimes and having to make sure each plate you swap is the right one to get rid of the enemies.

score is just about right here.



Ralizah said:

I still play this game on my NES all the time. Introduced my little Nephew to it as well. If nothing else, the boy will grow up with an appreciation for these classics.



New_3DaSh_XL said:

I'll redownload it for free just to try out the DL play on it with my bro, but it's still a fairly bad game imo.



Sun said:

@KnightRider666 But where is Yoshi's Cookie to be found? Not on WiiWare, not on eShop while this one has been released on both and as a freebie too!



bezerker99 said:

This game sits idly on my 3DS collecting virtual dust. I've never been able to get into it.



chewytapeworm said:

I always thought that I was the only person who enjoyed this game. It's a fabulous little timewaster!



KnightRider666 said:

@Rod64: Yes, though an update; which was available the same day Yoshi was released to the non-ambassadors.

@Sun: I believe Yoshi's Cookie was released on the Wii's NES VC, although I prefer the superior SNES version.



Bass_X0 said:

Yeah, Nintendo didn't like releasing the same game twice on the Virtual Console (even though other publishers loved to do so). So we only got one version of Yoshi's Cookie and Wario's Woods.



baba_944 said:

Yes Yoshi Cookie has been released for the Wii's VC I bought it and it's fun. Now I wish they release the GB version of it.



Link11 said:

Wow thanks for the review I was going to buy this game but now I won't. Because of you I'm saving 5 bucks

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