Yoshi Touch & Go
|Yoshi Touch & Go|
North American box art
|Developer(s)||Nintendo EAD Group No. 4|
Commercial availability 
Yoshi Touch & Go, known in Japan as Catch! Touch! Yoshi! (キャッチ!タッチ!ヨッシー!? Kyatchi! Tatchi! Yosshī!), is a video game that was developed and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo DS. It debuted in Japan on January 27, 2005, in North America on March 14, 2005, and in Europe on May 6, 2005. As of August 2007, the game sold 197,337 copies in Japan. Yoshi Touch & Go was produced by Takashi Tezuka and directed by Hiroyuki Kimura. It was one of the launch titles for the DS in Japan. The game was released on the Wii U Virtual Console in 2015.
The game revolves around Yoshi and Baby Mario/Baby Luigi. Its graphical style and cast of characters originate from Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island. The game heavily utilizes the DS's touch screen capabilities, and makes use of the microphone as well. The challenge in the game comes from replaying the same modes over and over to get the best possible score, similar to the classic arcade games of the 1980s. Therefore, the difficulty of the game is based primarily on improving one's own skill.
The game begins with three different gameplay modes: "Score Attack", "Marathon", and the "multiplayer vs. mode". Additionally, the player can unlock "Time Attack" and "Challenge modes" by getting the high score in the "Score Attack" and "Marathon" modes. When the high score on the two new modes is achieved, the mini-game "Balloon Trip" is unlocked. There are two basic level types: a vertical level, where the player must lead Baby Mario through the sky safely to the ground; and a side-scrolling level, where the player takes control over different colored Yoshis, carrying Baby Mario on their back.
As opposed to the earlier Yoshi games, in Yoshi Touch & Go the player cannot take direct control over the characters. Instead, the Yoshis move from the left to the right automatically at a certain speed. However, the player can draw lines on the lower screen with the stylus, which creates clouds that will support a character. This attribute allows to create alternate routes to avoid enemies and obstacles. If the drawn clouds are impeding progress, they disappear by blowing into the microphone (sometimes blowing into the microphone won't work for the DS Lite). Enemies can be dispatched by drawing circles on them, which puts most of them into a bubble. In the side-scrolling level, a Yoshi can make an egg out of fruits by leading them to its mouth. By tapping on the screen, the Yoshi will launch an egg in that direction, which is useful for killing enemies or collecting coins and fruits. By tapping on a Yoshi himself, the player can make him jump, and tapping him again while he's in midair will cause him to do a flutter-kick jump.
The Nintendo DS's two screens act as one tall screen, whereas the player can only create clouds on the lower one. However, by throwing eggs in the upper screen it is possible to collect coins or fruits from there. An exception provides the wireless "multiplayer vs. mode", where only the lower screen shows the player's view, while the upper screen shows that of the enemy. In the multiplayer, the goal is to be faster than the enemy. By clearing out enemies on the own screen, the player can cause spiky obstacles on the opponent's screen.
In some modes, there is a star point counter. Once this reaches 100, a Super Star will appear. If Yoshi touches it or the player drags it to Yoshi, Baby Mario will temporarily become Super Baby Mario, who is considerably faster than Yoshi and has unlimited stars (instead of eggs) to throw. The star points will then return to zero. Also, by feeding fruits to Yoshi a certain number of eggs will be replenished. The number of replenished eggs consists of the fruit (for instance, an apple only refills one egg, while melons refill twenty).
The color of Yoshi that Baby Mario rides depends on his score in the vertical falling part of the game. If he gets 60 points, he will ride a light blue Yoshi, and then the color will go up a level for every other 20 points he gets (for instance, pink Yoshi at 80 points, blue Yoshi at 100 points, etc.). The only two exceptions are white and orange Yoshi: In Marathon mode, when Baby Mario changes Yoshis, depending on his performance he might start riding a white Yoshi, who will switch to black Yoshi, unless it's at the 10,000 meters mark, in which case he will switch over to orange Yoshi. It will then switch to purple yoshi at 20,000 meters in Marathon. In challenge mode, after the high score is beaten, getting 0 points in the Baby Mario segment of future games will unlock a fast purple Yoshi. The same thing applies to time attack where a white Yoshi, which has unlimited eggs, can be unlocked.
According to director Hiroyuki Kimura and designer Keizo Ohta, Yoshi Touch & Go was originally planned to be designed for the Nintendo GameCube as "Balloon Trip". A demo of the game was first exhibited during the E3 of 2004 and gained positive response. Thereupon, the executives of Nintendo green lighted the project. Shigeru Miyamoto considered that the game would create a bigger impact as a DS title.
Yoshi Touch & Go was produced by Takashi Tezuka and director by Hiroyuki Kimura. The game's musical score was created by Toru Minegishi, Asuka Ohta, and Kazumi Totaka. Baby Mario and Baby Luigi were voiced by Charles Martinet while the voice-over of the Yoshis was done by Totaka, including the 19-note song he did.
The game was generally well received, though not as positively as earlier games of the Yoshi series, such as Yoshi's Island. It holds average ratings of 75% at GameRankings and 73/100 at Metacritic. Craig Harris of IGN said it "is one of the most original and unique games created for the system so far, and it's truly a design that's unlike anything you've played before." He especially commended the multiplayer mode and gave the game an 8.8/10. Additionally, it won the IGN Editors' Choice Award on March 11, 2005.
Some reviewers, however, criticised Yoshi Touch & Go for its lack of storyline and the simple gameplay. GameSpot's Ryan Davis found that he was "going through the same few levels over and over again" and thought the multiplayer mode was not very compelling, concluding that although "the gameplay concepts(...)are quite good," the overall package "simply lacks substance." Also, the game gathered negative criticism for its price, which was found too high by some critics. Nevertheless, Touch & Go was a moderate success, selling 197,337 copies in Japan.
- Whitehead, Thomas (June 22, 2015). "Nintendo Download: 25th June (Europe)". Nintendo Life. Retrieved July 23, 2015.
Download Yoshi's Woolly World on the eShop and receive a free code for Yoshi Touch & Go - deal available until 23rd July, code valid until 20th August.
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