Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker Review
Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker Box Art
System: Wii U
Dev: Nintendo EAD Tokyo
Pub: Nintendo
Release: December 5, 2014
Players: 1
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Mild Cartoon Violence
To the Rescue
by Matt Walker

Every now and again I have a review that hits my desk and I feel a little less than excited about it. After the many years I have been doing this, it happens from time to time. It doesn’t mean I don’t want to play the title; it’s just that in those moments I am a little more than exacerbated by what this new title will hold. This was the case with Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker. I had no inkling of checking it out, heck I don’t even think it was really on my radar, but I can say this much, I was pleasantly surprised. Which has been happening a lot with Nintendo and the Wii U.

Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker is very cliché, let’s just get that out there. Someone is kidnapped then you have to go on a quest to save him or her, rinse and repeat. The story honestly, isn’t that great, but it does fall into the norm when it comes to the Mario titles (though I still say Luigi’s Mansion and the first Super Mario Galaxy had the more engaging storylines). I think though the simplicity is more on purpose and not so much for the older fans that are looking for stronger storylines in these types of games. In simpler terms, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker really is a game meant for everyone.

The level designs are simple enough they follow suit with the levels found in Super Mario World 3D. In fact some of the bonus levels are exactly that (more on this in a moment). So there’s not a ton of new here, but that in itself is not a negative mark against the title. Instead it continues the thought of it being for everyone. The level designs are meant for you to be able to jump in and play and not feel downtrodden about the occasional complex puzzles to figure out.

Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker Screenshot

But those complexities are meant for those completionists who want to collect everything and unlock bonus levels as they progress. Each level has three diamonds, and a gold star that you must acquire in order to complete the level. The diamonds are optional and can often times be very tricky to get. There are also golden mushrooms that will unlock bonus levels. Once you complete the level the first time you will then have the option to complete certain challenges depending on the level. For example, something as simple as shooting a certain number of piranha plants with radishes (in first person mode, I might add).

Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker Screenshot

This actually brings me to what helped make this game both a challenge and accessible. Toad and Toadette can’t jump. They don’t have the same abilities as Mario and the rest, in fact they are quite limited in what they can do. Defeating enemies is also filled with limitation. You can throw radishes at the enemies in order to defeat them, but only if there are radishes around to throw. If the enemy is “undead” then shining your light on them will defeat them, but the only other thing you can do is run. Run your little toad legs off as fast as you can. It makes for increased difficulty, especially if you use your radishes all willy nilly and not sparingly in certain areas.

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