Toad-ally ready for adventure!
Shigeru Miyamoto once said in a relatively recent interview that Nintendo was planning on creating more spin-off titles in order to fill in the gaps between major Wii U releases. Because hey, third-parties ain't going to do that, am I right?
It seems that the first of such titles has released this past month with the launch of Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, starring the lovable adventurer who debuted in Super Mario Galaxy and his partner in crime Toadette. The game is based off of the Captain Toad levels within Super Mario 3D World, only expanded upon greatly for a $40 retail game. The end result is one that exudes charm and adds a new dimension to the Wii U library.
Treasure Tracker begins with a cold open, putting the player, Captain Toad, and Toadette within one of the game's many diorama-inspired levels, albeit this is a very small and simple one. Upon reaching the top of the level where a Power Star stands, the two begin a victory celebration around the prized trinket. However, it's not that much later that the talons of a giant, fierce bird clinch onto the Star. Toadette gets carried away along with the Power Star to which she equally fiercely clings onto for life. It's up to Captain Toad to summon up the courage to rescue Toadette while doing some treasure hunting in the process.
|"Just let go, Toadette!"|
|One of the first levels in |
Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker.
|Don't mind Captain Toad, Mr. Shy Guy.|
He's simply passing through!
|You guys sure know how to give a lady a lift!|
Regardless, despite these very small camera issues that don't take away much from Captain Toad, the camera is otherwise a godsend in the game. Just maneuvering the camera slightly can reveal otherwise impossible to see hidden alcoves filled with coins and other treasure, particularly Super Gems.
|Sorry, Piranha Creepers, but Captain|
Toad is absolutely NOT on the menu!
|Beat the cold weather with a tropical retreat!|
|Not really fighting fairly, are they?|
The Wii U GamePad is used in Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, and while the usage is full of gimmickry, I'm pleased that Nintendo at least tried to make the GamePad have some worthwhile use all the same. Aside from moving platforms up and down or side to side with a tap of the screen, there are special mine cart levels where you use the GamePad to aim your veggie cannon as you roll down the track. Still, there are very lame and unnecessary GamePad uses. I'm primarily thinking about blowing into the microphone of the controller in order to move certain platforms, an artifact of Super Mario 3D World.
|This level uses Super Mario 3D World's |
Double Cherry power-up.
|This trip to the pachinko table starts with a bang.|
Although the game suffers from some issues in its camera control and lack of a quick restart option in levels, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker is an unexpected gem in the Wii U library. Then again, how could I ever even think about questioning a game which is made by Nintendo EAD? That studio has proven time and time again just how masterful they are at creating fun, engaging games. If you're looking for a game that oozes with personality, adorable characters, entertaining puzzles and levels, and has great value, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker is the prize you seek. No need to hunt for this one. Just head to your local video game retailer or buy it on the Nintendo eShop today.
[SPC Says: 9.0/10]