Wii

North America

Toki Tori

by Nick DiMola - July 12, 2008, 10:48 pm PDT
Total comments: 20

8.5

Don't judge a book by its cover. Or in this case, a game by its graphics.

When Toki Tori was released for the Gameboy Color many moons ago, it didn't receive much attention from gamers. Presumably when developer Two Tribes heard of Nintendo's plans for WiiWare, they saw a perfect outlet for a re-release and re-envisioning of their cute little yellow bird and his puzzle game.

Toki Tori is a fairly straightforward puzzle title in which the player must collect a specified number of eggs in order to clear the level. Players are typically given a number of tools for a specified number of uses at the beginning of each level, and are forced to use them in the perfect situation in order to reach all of the eggs. One misstep or misuse of a tool renders the puzzle unsolvable.

Typically about half of the levels in each world can be solved on the first or second try. By the last few levels, you will find often yourself retrying and reformulating strategy. Since certain tools (such as the bridge maker) actually change a level's composition, your plans can often go awry due to some overlooked detail. The true challenge of the game exists in these scenarios, forcing you to think ten steps ahead at all times. If you do get stuck you're provided one "wild card" that allows you to skip any level. If you want the pass back, you must beat the level you used it on.

Despite Toki Tori's simple elements, the game proves quite adept at providing a challenging and thoughtful set of puzzles. Each of the four worlds offers a collection of ten levels, as well as a new landscape and sprite overhaul. Upon completion of the ten levels in a world, a number of "hard" levels are unlocked.

The game controls well, offering players two options. Using the Wii Remote's pointer (my preferred scheme), players are able to point to a desired location and the computer will choose a path for Toki Tori to follow in order to get there. In some instances, the best (i.e. shortest) path is not always desired as it takes Toki Tori right into an enemy. I lost some stages because I had traced the pointer along the path I thought Toki Tori would use, only to watch him take a different route I hadn't predicted. The other control method - full control with the Nunchuk's control stick - eliminates this issue, but it feels slower than the automatic method.

Graphically, Toki Tori leaves something to be desired. On one hand it has a certain charm, but on the other hand it looks like a cell phone game. The musical tracks fall into the same category; each world has an engaging score, but they repeat often (especially after playing sixteen levels in each world).

Being a puzzle game, Toki Tori's length is somewhat debatable. Completing the game at 100% took me about six hours, though this length will vary from person to person based on their puzzle-solving skills. Regardless of length, the game provides for a satisfying experience while it lasts, with puzzles neither seeming too hard or too easy. Fans of puzzle games in general, and particularly those in the vein of Capcom's Zack & Wiki, won't regret picking this one up.

Score

Graphics Sound Control Gameplay Lastability Final
5 5 9 8.5 7 8.5
Graphics
5

The graphics are sufficient for the game, but they look like something you'd see on a cell phone. The enemies and main character are endearing, though.

Sound
5

The soundtrack is decent, but fairly short and excessively repetitive. The sound effects are okay as well, but sparse.

Control
9

Players can control Toki Tori with the Wii Remote's pointer or the Nunchuk. The only problem is the game's pathfinding mechanism, which is good for finding the shortest path but not always the best path.

Gameplay
8.5

Toki Tori has fairly standard gameplay for a point-and-click puzzle game. It is challenging, but never unbearably hard. The wild card allows players to skip levels that are stumping them, making the game accessible to a larger audience.

Lastability
7

The game is of decent length, taking about six hours to fully complete. However, it has little replay value if you have a good enough memory. Perhaps after a few months you can revisit Toki Tori and play through some of the tougher levels again, but that all depends on the player.

Final
8.5

Toki Tori is a good bit of fun and of respectable length for a WiiWare title. However, the graphics are needlessly poor and the soundtrack needs some more variety, especially for a puzzle game that will have you sitting and thinking for long stretches.

Summary

Pros
  • Engaging puzzles that never seem unsolvable
  • Extra unlockable levels
  • Wild card that lets players skip one level at a time
Cons
  • Looks like a cell phone game
  • Soundtrack becomes repetitive
Review Page 2: Conclusion

Talkback

Nick DiMolaNick DiMola, Staff AlumnusJuly 13, 2008

You guys should also check out KDR_11k's review for a second opinion over in the Reader Review section, he did a great job reviewing this title.

I was just thinking that I would like to download another WiiWare game, but most of the recent additions have been crap.  I'd forgotten all about Toki Tori, so this review has convinced me to grab it after E3.

This game is 2D. This game is beautiful.

KDR_11kJuly 13, 2008

I think the limited variety of music is somewhat forgivable since it's a downloadable game, MLaaK has less music variety.

I'm curious as to why the game was 300 blocks when it was clearly 2D... the music can't have been THAT big could it?

KDR_11kJuly 13, 2008

300 blocks isn't that much (a block was something like 128kB, right?), the animations have a large number of frames and everything is pretty high resolution, music in mp3 or OGG eats a few MB per track easily. Sprites EXPLODE in size as their frame count and resolution increase.

I'm not sure if the increase in size is justified. SuperNES games came in at MUCH lower sizes... I'm not sure that OGG music and additional frames are worth it in what is essentially a puzzle game.

Nick DiMolaNick DiMola, Staff AlumnusJuly 13, 2008

Quote from: Kairon

I'm not sure if the increase in size is justified. SuperNES games came in at MUCH lower sizes... I'm not sure that OGG music and additional frames are worth it in what is essentially a puzzle game.

Well, I think you are only saying that because of Nintendo's unwillingness to open up the SD Card. If the developers can do more, they should. Nintendo NEEDS to address these storage issues this week or else they are going to start losing money on potential sales because people are running out of blocks.

I bought this game when it came out and I must have completely forgotten about it because I still haven't played it. I should probably play it.

KDR_11kJuly 13, 2008

Quote from: Kairon

I'm not sure if the increase in size is justified. SuperNES games came in at MUCH lower sizes... I'm not sure that OGG music and additional frames are worth it in what is essentially a puzzle game.

Loads of additional frames + higher resolution + higher bit depth. Also I'd rather not have midi music in a game...

ATimsonJuly 14, 2008

Quote from: KDR_11k

Also I'd rather not have midi music in a game...

Whereas I'd prefer having some sort of synthesized music, rather than looping orchestral samples. While the sound quality may not be as high (though frankly, with modern synthesizing, that's debatable), it allows for a dynamism in the music that you can't get with prerendered tracks.

The music was one of the greatest things about the original X-wing and TIE Fighter; they were able to replicate the experience of the movies' score, and its relevance to the on-screen action, in a way that hasn't been done in any of the Star Wars games since. (It was done in The Wind Waker to a degree, though; I loved how the combat music was in tune with when you swung your sword.)

D_AverageJuly 14, 2008

I definately second this review.  The game has been a great addition to my Wii Channels for short but challenging puzzles.  The music however blows....I mean...its really bad....Casio keyboard bad.

KDR_11kJuly 14, 2008

Quote from: ATimson

Whereas I'd prefer having some sort of synthesized music, rather than looping orchestral samples. While the sound quality may not be as high (though frankly, with modern synthesizing, that's debatable), it allows for a dynamism in the music that you can't get with prerendered tracks.

1. Nintendo have said they can do dynamic music just fine with proper sound files.
2. What's there to be dynamic about in TT?
3. Who knows what the synthesizer in the Wii is like...

LuigiHannJuly 14, 2008

Conversely, if the game's music is comprised of midis recorded into ogg, then it is a big waste of space, eh?

KDR_11kJuly 14, 2008

Not if it was recorded with a synth that's better than the one in the Wii.

UltimatePartyBearJuly 14, 2008

I actually like Toki Tori's music.  It's catchy and fits the game perfectly.  Of course, it's got to be the absolutely last thing anyone should care about in this game.

Tuxedo.BondJuly 15, 2008

Quote from: Kairon

I'm not sure if the increase in size is justified. SuperNES games came in at MUCH lower sizes... I'm not sure that OGG music and additional frames are worth it in what is essentially a puzzle game.

Apples and oranges...

Would you rather the game have MIDI's as audio and 8 bit era sprites to decrease the size?

shammackJuly 15, 2008

Yes.

Tuxedo.BondJuly 15, 2008

Yeah, well, Two Tribes doesn't care about what you think. >_>

They should let you download it in original mode, with the graphics and midi music of the original Game Boy Color Toki Tori. I'd do it, I need the space, at least until tomorrow.

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Genre Puzzle
Developer Two Tribes
Players1 - 2

Worldwide Releases

na: Toki Tori
Release Jun 02, 2008
PublisherTwo Tribes
RatingEveryone
eu: Toki Tori
Release May 20, 2008
PublisherTwo Tribes
Rating3+
aus: Toki Tori Take 2
Release May 20, 2008
PublisherTwo Tribes
RatingGeneral

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