Yoshi's New Island is the third entry in Nintendo's dinosaur-led, egg-tossing platformer franchise, following 1995's Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island and 2006's Yoshi's Island DS. The game was developed by Arzest and published by Nintendo on the Nintendo 3DS on March 14th 2014 in Europe and North America and on July 24th 2014 in Japan.
The basic gameplay remains unchanged from the original game, with different coloured Yoshi transporting baby Mario to the end of the level. If players come in contact with anything hostile, Baby Mario once again begins to float anyway in a bubble of his own snot and players are tasked with popping the bubble and recovering Baby Mario before a timer runs out.
Along the way, Yoshi can swallow enemies to create eggs, which can be aimed and tossed at other enemies or key places in the level to trigger special events. The biggest addition to the gameplay from the previous titles in the series is the inclusion of giant enemies which can swallowed to produce colossal eggs used to destroy specific parts of the world.
Once again collectibles and exploration are a key component to the gameplay. Each level contains 3 different types of collectible:
And the collectibles are used to unlock secret stages at the end of each of the games 6 different worlds.
Also scattered throughout levels are Whirly Gates (taking the place of morph bubbles from the previous two games) which transform Yoshi into various different things and enter players into a short course to be traversed within a given timeframe often making use of the 3DS tilt functionality. There are six different types of transformation which Yoshi can undergo:
- Hot-Air Balloon
- Mine Cart
Finally the game also features various competitive and cooperative game modes which can be played either online or shared with another 3DS locally using a single copy of the game. The six included competitive and cooperative modes are:
- Ground-Pound Pop: The objective of this mini-game is to pop as many of the target colour balloons in one minute using the ground-pound attack.
- Tulip Toss: The aim of this mini-game is to toss as many Koopa Troopas into the tulips within a minute. Various amounts of stars are awarded based on the colour of the tulip thrown into and the player with the most stars after the minute is victorious.
- Flutter Fortune: This mini-game challenges players to use the flutter jump to collect as many coins as possible within one minute.
- Enemy Eat-Off: The goal of this mini-game is to turn more enemies into eggs than your opponent within one minute.
- Eggy Pop: The objective here is to simply pop as many balloons as possible within one minute.
- Flutter Finish: This mini-game is remake of Flutter Challenge from Yoshi's Island DS. The objective is once more to flutter jump as far as possible within one minute.
The game occurs after the events of Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island but before the events of Yoshi's Island DS as Baby Mario and Luigi by the Stork to a couple in The Mushroom Kingdom. The couple however reveal that the brothers aren't their children and that they have in fact been delivered to the wrong parents and so the Stork reclaims the babies and rushes off to find the correct parents and home for the children. Kamek meanwhile ambushes the Stork mid-flight capturing him and Baby Luigi but during the ordeal Baby Mario falls, landing on the nearby Egg Island where he is found by the Yoshi clan who decide to help him find his brother and stop Baby Bowser who plans to turn the island into his summer home.
As the brothers are telepathically linked, Baby Mario can easily sense his brothers location and so with the assistance of the Yoshi clan set off to recover his brother. After locating his brother and defeating both Baby Bowser and his older self, saving Egg Island and rescuing the Stork, the two brothers are finally reunited at last. The Stork then proceeds to fulfil his duty and take the brothers to their rightful parents who upon arrival confirm the children have finally been delivered to the right home.
Development on Yoshi's New Island was once again overseen by Takashi Tezuka, the creative director of the original SNES game. Arzest, the studio behind the game, was formed by ex-employees of Artoon, the now-defunct developer of Yoshi's Island DS. Imageepoch assisted with animations and some Nintendo EAD Group 4 designers who worked on the New Super Mario Bros. series chipped in as well.