Ever since the trailer dropped for Yoku’s Island Express I knew instantly I would be both buying it, loving it and playing the hell out of it. Sure enough, from the gorgeous title screen with its brilliant music, right through to the moment I completed the game I was grinning ear to ear.
Yoku's adventure is a Metroidvania style romp with the unique twist that this colourful world is actually a giant pinball machine! No jump button here - just you, a ball, a cute little beetle and countless flippers which propel you where you need to go (or indeed where you don't want to go!).
The mechanics are challenging and fun, the puzzles are satisfyingly puzzling and the story is not too complex. The organic way you gain extra skills and progress to new areas is extremely pleasing, and you are rewarded for going off the beaten track as the island of is crammed full of secrets and treasures. All in all, it’s a fine way to spend a weekend!
On a different note, I was really pleased I bought it on the release date because at the time of playing there were no online walkthroughs available. I always go into games with every intention of not looking at any solution but I nearly always do, especially for the last little bits preventing 100%! Without someone holding my hand I felt myself more immersed in the game and it gave me a feeling I haven’t felt since the SNES days when there was pretty much no internet! I hope to continue this style of game playing, even when trophies are dangled so tantalizingly in front of me.
Keep it locked on www.wobwobrob.com for more reviews, and also follow me on www.twitch.tv/wobwobrob where you’ll no doubt find me getting my Yoku on!