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Yoshi's Cookie (NES) artwork

Yoshi's Cookie (NES) review


"Yoshi's Cookie, released by Nintendo in 1993, is one of the last of the Tetris-style NES games and is one of the last NES games ever to be put out on the market. In fact, I kind of remember the commercial for it. I think there was a bunch of kids walking out of a building like zombies and saying, ''Cookie! Cookie!'' Anyway, that's irrelevant right now. After all, I didn't spend my time writing this just to tell you my personal experiences with commercialized zombies. "



Yoshi's Cookie, released by Nintendo in 1993, is one of the last of the Tetris-style NES games and is one of the last NES games ever to be put out on the market. In fact, I kind of remember the commercial for it. I think there was a bunch of kids walking out of a building like zombies and saying, ''Cookie! Cookie!'' Anyway, that's irrelevant right now. After all, I didn't spend my time writing this just to tell you my personal experiences with commercialized zombies.

When the game begins, you get to watch an animation (Yoshi eats Mario's bag of cookies, and Mario chases Yoshi with a hammer) while deciding whether to delve into one player mode or into two player mode. When you have made your decision, each player has the ultimate privilege of choosing their level (or handicap), their game speed, and the music type (No, only one player gets to choose this one). Then, the game begins.

In one player mode, your job is to properly release cookies from an oven without the oven becoming overcrowded with the munchies. The inside of the oven will take up almost the whole screen and there will be a block of different types of cookies inside of it when you start each stage. With your control pad, you can move a cursor around the cookie block. You can use this cursor to rotate one row or one column of cookies. Once one row or one column of the block is totally filled with the same type of cookie, that row or column will leave the oven, making your cookie block smaller. It's not as easy as it sounds, though, because more cookies will slowly descend into the oven to build up your cookie block and frustrate you more. If you get rid of the cookie block, you win; but if the oven totally fills up with cookies before you dispose of them all, you lose.

In two player mode, each player has to try to win three rounds in order to beat their opponent. There will be two cookie blocks on the screen, each belonging to a player and each containing 25 cookies. At the same time, the players have to move the cookies on their block to get five of the same cookies in a row or in a column before their individual timer runs out. When five are aligned, they disappear, give you one extra point, reset your individual timer, and place five new cookies in the block, one shaped like Yoshi's head. If you align five Yoshi cookies together, something will happen to you or your opponent, whether it be gaining points, losing points, scrambling the cookie block, or any of a few other special events that can happen. If your timer runs out before you align a row of cookies, you automatically lose that round. Once a player reaches 25 points, the player wins that round; and the two players can proceed to the next round, as long as neither of the players have won three rounds yet.

The game control in Yoshi's Cookie is pretty good, though not the best. The cursor is extremely responsive when you try to move it around; in fact, it's a bit too responsive because the cursor will sometimes move too far when you try to move it to a certain spot. Since this is just about the only thing you have to do in the whole game, that's really all there is to say about the game's control.

After observing Nintendo's reputation for high quality games, I was very disappointed at the graphics in this NES game. In the animations that you see at the beginning of the game and after every 10 stages in one player mode, the characters look like they've been squashed (maybe it's Bowser's doing). These animations were also very plain and undetailed. The in-game graphics were a bit better. The cookies did have some detail and they were distinguishable from each other. The scene of Mario pushing buttons in the upper-right corner of the screen is well done and pretty neat looking. The background of the oven is plain black, but the pink border at the top and right sides of the oven makes it look a little better. But I would have to say that this looks like one of Nintendo's most thrown-together games out yet.

The music in this game is also a disappointment. The opening song is a giddy song, but it can get annoying very quickly. There are three in-game songs you can choose from. One of these is a slower song, one is a faster song, and the other is somewhere in the middle, I guess. Unfortunately, all of these are poorly orchestrated and don't have very much quality and catchiness behind them.

Now, the sound effects are hard to rate because there are really only a few of these effects in the whole game. When moving the cursor around the cookie block, you hear beeps, which makes sense because there's not many sounds you can use for that anyway. Then, there's the sound of the cookies when you rotate them, which sounds like a beep that a robot would make. Basically, the effects in this game are just a bunch of beeps, which does fit in with a lot of the actions very well, but it isn't much to listen to.

Yoshi's Cookie starts getting pretty hard after the first few rounds, even when your speed is set to slow. The blocks start out larger and larger as you proceed through each round. Plus, the cookies in the blocks become more and more mixed up, causing you to take longer to line up the cookies you need. Unfortunately, this only makes the game less enjoyable as you go through a ton of stages and waste your time trying to fix a huge cookie block with a bunch of the mixed up munchies.

I guess that you can see through the preceding review that this game is lacking in replay value. The gameplay just isn't all that great and the challenge even makes the game less enjoyable. In fact, you may often find yourself playing for only about ten minutes before you shut it off out of boredom. The one very enjoyable feature in the game is the two player mode. Though it doesn't even come close to matching up to the two player modes in many other NES games, this one is somewhat entertaining when you are playing with a friend; but it is still not that much fun.

If you really want a similar puzzle game for your NES system, go with Tetris or Dr. Mario instead. They are much more enjoyable and better designed than Yoshi's Cookie is. This is just to be one of those lame puzzle attempts that didn't go very far. To see Nintendo producing games like this is very disappointing to the Nintendo fan; and it's a very good thing that this was a late release, or else Nintendo may have possibly lost some of their fan's respect over this game. I doubt they would, but that's just a guess.

-----

Gameplay (5/10): The VS. mode is neat, but the one player mode is just a lame Tetris-like puzzle game.
Control (8/10): The controls are very responsive, but they can be slippery at times.
Graphics (5/10): The animations are horrible looking, and the in-game graphics are a little plain.
Music (4/10): A lot of the music is poorly conducted and seems thrown together.
Sound (6/10): I guess a bunch of beeps fits pretty well, but there aren't very many effects.
Challenge (5/10): The game does get kind of hard after the first few rounds.
Replay (4/10): It isn't as fun as other similar games, like Tetris and Dr. Mario.

Overall (5/10): This is a big disappointment from Nintendo. They could've done a lot better.

Rating: 5/10

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Community review by royalranger (Date unavailable)

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