Yoshi NES logo

Yoshi is hard. I don’t mean Chuck Norris hard but multi-task hard. It’s a simple task but I found myself crying in the first few minutes. It’s a puzzle game that wouldn’t look out of place on a Game Boy, Nintendo eShop or in a zoo. I have no reasoning for the latter, just wanted more than two options.

Yoshi, as we all know, is Mario’s hygienist and they’ve known each other for some years. One day Mario went to Yoshi’s surgery and said that he was thinking of a career change. He said he always wanted to get into the medical game so started calling himself Dr. Mario and handing out pills willy-nilly. Yoshi thought this was madness but had aspirations of becoming both a juggler and shelf stacker. Then, it occurred to him to make his own video game that incorporated these so he could challenge his Italian friend. And that’s how this game came about.

Level 3 screen, Yoshi for the NES

Yoshi is a puzzle game that has various things from the world of Mario fall onto some scales, that Mario is supporting. There are four in total and as these objects fall from the sky, you stack them up to make pairs. This pair can be a goomba, boo or piranha plant – plus much more. Line up two or more and then boom: line up another pair. It’s like Tetris and Dr. Mario chopped up, thrown into a blender then poured onto an NES. Yoshi has two features that make this the best game called Yoshi.

Number 1: half-shells (not TMNT) fall down onto the scales. If you make a Yoshi egg sandwich and wedge some of these objects in-between, you can wipe out a column in one go. Awethome. Number 2: Mario has four scales/platforms he’s holding but he can switch them around, thus making your stack even more impressive. It’s a good idea, but then when I think about the multi-tasking aspect of it, I struggle and then give up. Check out the video below on how to actually play. They make it look easy.

Yoshi appears to have a bit of a following – this game is a bit similar to Yoshi’s Cookie and Yoshi’s Fish Finger Sandwich. It’s actually a great game but it’s comparable to cooking for me. While I can prepare and cook pretty well, I can only do one thing at a time and while I will refer to myself as a gamer and can play games with complex controls, this phased me a little.

As is always the case with a lot of NES games, there’s no history for me. The first time I saw Yoshi was in the park. The second time was Super Mario World and I thought he was a bit of a nob. Still, he’s a mainstay these days with his latest Switch outing, but coming back to Yoshi the game, it’s erm, good. I just can’t play it/have the enthusiasm for it.

Instead, may I suggest Kirby’s Adventure once more? Or if you want a puzzle game on the NES, Dr. Mario is hard to beat. Not literally. My favourite modern-day puzzler that’s on the Switch at the moment though is Puyo Puyo Champions. Expect to see a write up on that soon, but for now, let’s call it a day. A Sun day.

Yoshi for the NES, game over

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