Captain Toad Treasure Tracker - A Refreshing Game
Released in early December for us here in the U.S. to generally positive reviews, Captain Toad Treasure Tracker is a game that deserves those reviews. It looked like a risky idea "Let's take those levels from a previous Mario game and give them their own game!" but really, it was a great idea.
First things first, the mechanics; rotate the camera and use the Gamepad to find your way to the star and collect 3 hidden gems along the way, simple; but simple doesn't mean bad. The game is at the right difficulty of challenge for anyone, be it the kid who just got the Wii U and the game for Christmas, or someone like me with thirteen consoles and also a PC gamer.
Does Captain Toad Get Boring?
Secondly, repetition; the game would be more repetitive, had Nintendo not done something very wise, break the whole game into multiple parts of eighteen levels. Breaking the "more than 70 levels" into multiple parts manages to take out a big chunk of any feelings of repetition (for me at least, but hey, all puzzle games can feel repetitive). Not only this, but there’s a wonderful spectrum of level variety. Be it running across falling planks with haste, using the Gamepad to throw turnips, tapping to rearrange blocks in the level, using a crank to turn platforms around to expose new sets of obstacles or evade bullet-bills, using a second you to solve the puzzles, and how I could go on!
But What Does it Look Like?
Moving on, how the game looks. By now, no one should have to explain “Well, graphics don’t make a game for me but…” and frankly, graphics are utterly meaningless to me, I find myself not affected by how graphics are, even if the consensus is that they’re bad. Regardless, I’m still capable of enjoying a game that I know looks nice. That said; I was really taken with Captain Toad. With it being on the Wii U, it’s not far-fetched to think it’s up with Mario Kart 8 on the list of ‘Best Looking Wii U Games’ because it was most likely done on the same engine. What’s the result of a quirky idea constructed on an engine already proven capable? An entertaining game on the Wii U that is beautiful to look at and enjoyable to play.
It's not far-fetched to think it's up with Mario Kart 8 on the list of 'Best Looking Wii U Games"
Finally, just how fun is it? I got the game on Christmas with Smash 4 on the Wii U. Of the two I have put more time into collecting gems and solving puzzles than I have settling ‘it’ in Smash. That may be from my lack of competitive nature in fighting games, or that I’d already played Smash 4 on the 3DS plenty. All I know for sure is that my curiosity about what tracking treasure was like beat out the yearning to see Smash 4 looking better than I’d already seen it.
Is This the Game for Me?
Do I like Captain Toad? Yes. Would I recommend it? Of course! Do I have any grievances with it? I can’t say I do. How difficult is it? Often I feel like it is too easy, but that’s part of the experience. You’re not supposed to struggle to find the way to the star, you’re supposed to take your time and find all the gems which adds a slight degree of difficulty but extends just how enjoyable it is. What about the boss fights? They’re also challenging but fun. They require precise timing, which isn’t too hard to manage, but going for all 3 gems is tricky.
Am I biased? Probably a little, but this is a game I saw and decided I wanted to try. I didn’t hype it up, I didn’t count down the days until it released, I went in with an open mind and wanted to be impressed and I was, and I genuinely think that this is a good game. Should you buy it? If you want to pick up a game that will challenge a little, be fun to play, and won’t have the commitment requirements as most games, yes. If you have transcended the realm of the most hard-core gamers and you don’t find enjoyment in anything that isn’t built to challenge or you can’t (or don’t) like sometimes slowing down and enjoying the simpler things, then no. It’s a game for most everyone.