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Video Game / Yoshi's Story

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Released in 1997 on the Nintendo 64, Yoshi's Story is a Platform Game and a sequel to the Super Nintendo classic, Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island. It's shorter, simpler, and aimed at much younger players than its predecessor. The story concerns eight baby Yoshis that have been trapped in a magical storybook thanks to a spell cast by Baby Bowser, and must find and eat thirty pieces of fruit on each of the book's six pages in order to escape, steal back the Super Happy Tree (a tree that bears all kinds of fruit), defeat Baby Bowser, and rescue their parents.

Fruit is plentiful throughout each level, and novice players can simply gobble up every fruit they find to finish the game quickly. Experienced players can choose to eat only a single type of fruit (such as melons, the rarest type) for a higher score and a tougher challenge. You only need to beat one level per page to move on to the next, and bosses are fought on pages three and six. Finding up to three large, smiling hearts on any page lets you choose the more difficult levels on the next.

Although it's not as popular as its predecessor, Yoshi's Story is notable for introducing Yoshi's famous squeaky voice and anthropomorphic design (before then, he looked much more like a real dinosaur). A spiritual successor, Yoshi's Crafted World, was released for the Nintendo Switch in 2019.


  • 2D: The Trope Codifier. Though Donkey Kong Country was an earlier example, Yoshi's Story did the important task of proving that sidescrolling platformers were still viable in a time when nearly everyone had predicted that games like Super Mario 64 and Crash Bandicoot (1996) would kill the market for them.
  • Abnormal Ammo: As par for the course for the Yoshi games, Eggs are the go-to source of ammo for the Baby Yoshis, though they can also use Huffin Puffin's chicks as boomerang-like projectiles in "Surprise!!" and "Frustration".
  • Absurdly-Spacious Sewer: "Jelly Pipe" and "Torrential Maze" are set in wide sewers.
  • A Day in the Limelight: As an entry in the Yoshi series, Yoshi is the main star instead of Mario, who only get a small mention in Baby Bowser's pre-fight monologue.
  • Alternate Album Cover: The game's soundtrack features three different album covers depending on the region. The Japanese release depicts a render of Yoshi crossing his arms in front of aluminum foil balloons bearing the game name, the Nintendo 64 logo, the health meter, and Yoshi eggs, all atop a white backdrop. The US release, Music to Pound the Ground To, depicts Yoshi flashing a peace sign atop a denim pocket with the N64 logo embroidered in the corner. The German release, Love, Peace & Happiness, features a mirrored recreation of the game's box art.
  • Aside Glance: The Yoshis will sometimes give one to the camera as an idle animation.
  • Bee Afraid: The game's later levels introduce beehives that require the Yoshis to sneak past to proceed. If they go too fast, the bees will become agitated and form a hand that orders them to go back. Attempting to knock the hive down with an egg will anger the bees and make them form a fist that hits the Yoshis.
  • Big Eater: The Yoshis, as usual. However, certain food items or enemies such as chili peppers or blue Teehee Butterflies will cost them petals from the Smile Meter. The unlockable Black and White Yoshis can eat the peppers without consequence, though.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: "Ghost Castle", as the name implies, is a haunted castle filled to the brim with Boos along with the helpful Ghost Riders.
  • Bombardier Mook: Black-robed Propeller Shy Guys fly around carrying either bombs or large spiked stones, both of which they will try to drop on Yoshi's head.
  • Bouncy Bubbles: Bubbles containing objects such as fruit or ? Bubbles are found in every level in the game. They will bounce Yoshi back on contact and can be popped by throwing an egg or one of Huffin Puffin's chicks at them or by bouncing off of them many times in succession.
  • Continuity Nod: The aforementioned "Cloud Cruising" level includes a reference to the old "Coin Heaven" bonus stages of Mario games past.
  • Collection Sidequest:
    • Actually the main game, as Yoshi must eat 30 pieces of fruit to pass each level.
    • Each level contains three large hearts Yoshi is expected to collect while travelling through the levels. The number of hearts collected determine how many levels become available to you on the next page (i.e. if you collect all three, you can play any of the page's levels, but if you collect none, you can only play the first).
    • There's also the 30 Melons in each level, which is enough to complete the level, and one can beat the game collecting only Melons. Compared to the rest of the game, it's surprisingly difficult, and there's absolutely no reward for doing so beyond a higher score and bragging rights.
  • Cranium Ride: We'll let the game say it:
    Neuron is a friendly guy;
    Use his head to ride up high.
  • Dem Bones: The Bone Dragons, as their name suggests, are dragons made entirely of bone.
  • Developer's Foresight: If you go out of your way to eat thirty Lucky Fruit by being very careful and ground pounding near lots of Shy Guys while you're invincible, Yoshi will dance in front of whatever fruit you ate thirty of.
  • Dub Name Change: Many things such as Bonebone Dragon becoming Bone Dragon and Happiness Butterfly becoming Power Bee...despite lokking nothing like a bee.
  • Easy Level Trick: In 6-3, "Ghost Castle", there is a room with lots of Mini Boos in it which are just like Shy Guys and turn into Lucky Fruit when you ground pound near them when you're Super Happy. If you eat enough Lucky Fruit to get a Super Happy Fruit in this room you can get all 30 fruit you need to beat the level in just one ground pound! The yellow block near the end of the level also has a hidden Super Happy Fruit in it if you ground pound it.
  • Eternal Engine: Mecha Castle and Lift Castle on page six. Mecha Castle appears to contain large swords, and lift castle has mostly lifts, but both are mechanized levels.
  • Expressive Health Bar: The player's health bar, which is called the Smile Meter, is represented by a smiling flower. At full health, the flower's face is red with a big smile, at partial health is yellow with a slight smile and at no health remaining or the Yoshi's loss is blue and hairy with a frowning, lip-biting expression. If the player manages to eat a Heart Fruit and become Super Happy (which grants near-invincibility and fully restores their health), the flower instead breaks out into a wide grin and starts pulsating.
  • Fake Difficulty:
    • Part of the reason the "Melon Quest" side-challenge (eat nothing but 30 melons in one playthrough) is so hard is because in some levels, the Melons are very well hidden and require thorough knowledge and exploration of the levels to find them, and some of them require unintuitive methods, trial and error or just logic-defying ways to find them (i.e. having to ground pound a very specific spot of a level in a precise way—even the Yoshi's ability to sniff for secrets isn't always helpful, one box puzzle in Jungle Stream requires you to combine two specific ? boxes in a certain way to get all the melons, etc.). Some are just straight up impossible to find without looking up a walkthrough.
    • Another problem is that the Melon Quest's very nature leaves zero room for error—one slip up means having to replay the entire level or, in worst case scenario, restart the entire playthrough. And some of the melons, like the Melon Race or Catch the Coins melons, only give you one chance at getting them, or levels have lots of pits for them to fall into (i.e. Shy Guys Ship).
    • Worst of all, the melons can sometimes land in spots where it's very easy to grab the wrong fruit (Cloud Cruise has a particularly nasty case of this where a melon lands directly between two pieces of fruit that are already very close together, meaning your Yoshi needs to eat it from a very specific, pixel perfect spot so he doesn't eat the other fruit by accident).
  • Final Boss: Baby Bowser who you fight four times in order to fully finish the game!
  • For Happiness: The entire plot of the game is to bring happiness back to the populace of Yoshi's Island. Also, the baby Yoshis' lives revolve around happiness. Literally. So you've gotta make sure they stay as happy as can be!
  • For the Evulz: Implied to be the real motivation by Baby Bowser to take the "Super Happy Tree," as he admits after being defeated that the tree's fruit "tasted rotten to him anyway."
  • Fuzzball Spider: The Spider enemies look like striped balls with spike-like legs and two eyes.
  • The Goomba: The Shy Guys are the most common enemy the Yoshis encounter in this game and, save for some variants, can easily be taken out with a single attack of any kind.
  • Green Hill Zone: "Treasure Hunt" and "Surprise!!" on page one take place on green, grassy areas and serve as the tutorial levels for the game.
  • Hard Levels, Easy Bosses: Becomes this trope when you're doing the "Melon Quest" challenge. The levels become exponentially harder for various reasons, but the bosses remain as easy as ever.
  • Invincible Minor Minion: The most the Yoshis can do to deal with Pak E. Derm, an elephant enemy who acts as an obstacle by attempting to block the progress of the Yoshis with his stop sign, is to Ground Pound close to him to briefly knock him over before he gets up again.
    • The beehives seen in later levels are also invincible. The bees will halt the Yoshis and make them go back if they move too quickly by their hive, and trying to knock the hive down with an egg will result in the bees forming a fist to hit the Yoshi responsible for it.
  • Idle Animation: Aww, lookit him dance! And that's not all. Depending on the circumstances, Yoshi may pant and attempt to catch his breath, teeter back and forth (if he's low on health), growl at nearby enemies, cheer happily, gulp, or even stare in confusion at the camera.
  • It's All Upstairs From Here: "Tower Climb" and "The Tall Tower" both take place at tall towers that the Yoshis have to scale.
  • Jungle Japes: All of the levels in page 4, which is even called "Jungle", are set in jungles in some way.
  • Kid Hero: The six hatchlings, as opposed to the adult Yoshis featured in the rest of the series.
  • Lighter and Softer: Even more so than Yoshi's Island, which was already a kid-friendly game.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Both "Blargg's Boiler" on Page 2 and "Magma Castle" on Page 6 feature copious amounts of lava as a stage hazard.
  • Level in the Clouds: "Cloud Cruising," the first level of Page 3, has the Yoshis ascending into the clouds with the help of flying snakes throughout the first half of the level and riding a dragon through the clouds in the second half.
  • Levels Take Flight: The vast majority of "Cloud Cruising" has the Yoshis riding on flying snakes with different trajectories that they can change in the first half and a flying dragon in the second.
  • Long Song, Short Scene: The song "Spider Swing" plays in exactly one section of one level, and it's not a segment you'll spend too much time in. On top of that, there's the Super Happy version of that song, which you'll hear for maybe twenty seconds.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • When no petals remain on the Smile Meter, the level's music is distorted to a slower, more somber version, and when a Yoshi is lost, they're taken to Baby Bowser's castle by Toadies while crying and ominous, somber music plays. When all of the Yoshis are lost, an even more ominous and somber song plays, as if all hope is lost for them.
    • Page 2 and, to a lesser extent Page 4, are more menacing in appearance and tone than Page 1's lighthearted feel, with Page 2 looking like the depths of Hell and having pretty ominous music while Page 4 is filled with giant Piranha Plants trashing around while menacing music plays. Similarly, the mood of Page 6 is far more ominous and serious compared to the other pages.
  • Mouthy Bird: This artwork has a Bumpty's beak flat against its face, almost resembling lips.
  • Nintendo Hard:
    • Some of the minigames are very difficult to ace, in very stark contrast with the general ease of the rest of the game. Two of the more notoriously difficult minigames include Broad Jumpnote  and Melon Stacknote . This, combined with the fact that you only have one chance to obtain all seven melons from the minigames, is part of what makes the game's optional "Melon Quest" side challenge so difficult.
    • The stage 'Frustration' lives up to its name. Places with insta-death traps aren't fun, either, especially if your controller sticks.
  • Only Fatal to Adults: All of the inhabitants of Yoshi's Island become zombie-like except for a couple of Yoshi eggs.
  • One-Hit Kill: Falling into a pit or lava, getting eaten by the Big Blurps in "Jungle Puddle" or getting caught between moving gears or crushed by pistons in "Mecha Castle" will all result in the instant loss of a Yoshi.
  • Pickup Hierarchy:
    • Primary: Fruit. You need to collect 30 to beat a level.
    • Secondary: Hearts are necessary to open up new levels in the next world, although not mandatory since one level will always be available. The fact they're technically optional makes them secondary.
    • Tertiary: Coins and Eggs.
    • Extra: Melons count simultaneously as this and Primary. Collecting all melons warrants a perfect score, and they're the usual reward for completing optional challenges within levels. There's also the White Shy Guy and the secret playable Yoshis.
  • Power-Up Letdown: It's a good idea to avoid the Bumber 'Chute if possible. Getting this item makes you unable to flutter-jump, instead giving you the ability to float down in directions you did not intend to at various speeds. You will also be stuck with it until the Yoshi is lost, use a Miss Warp or leave the area.
  • Press X to Die: The game contains a codenote  that will cause you to instantly lose a Yoshi when executed. Triggering it requires the Z, L, A and B buttons to be pressed simultaneously, and, if done correctly, will result in the instant loss of the Yoshi you were playing as. Watch a video demonstration of this code here.
  • Punny Name: "Pak E. Derm" is a pun on Pachyderm, which refers to an obsolete taxonomic order that included elephants.
  • Rainbow Motif: Each of the Baby Yoshis comes in a different color, and this is important because each of the Yoshi's has different tastes in fruit and Shy Guys. There are also Black and White Yoshis you can bring along.
  • Recurring Riff: Almost all of the music tracks reuse or include a few notes from the games opening theme song.
  • Ribcage Ridge: A few stages on page two feature the bones of massive creatures as stepping stones, most notably in "Blargg's Boiler".
  • Rhymes on a Dime: The introduction and ending are presented in rhyming couplets. Some of the Hint Block's tips also rhyme.
  • Secret Character: Hidden in various levels are secret Black and White Yoshi eggs that will hatch into their respective Baby Yoshis; these Yoshis lack favorite foods but can eat peppers and black shy guys, which the normal Baby Yoshis cannot tolerate. These Yoshis also shoot more powerful, explosive eggs.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: "Poochy and Nippy" and "Frustration", both found on Page 3, are set in snowy lands.
  • Speaking Simlish: The hatchlings sing the theme song in simlish; Yoshi's now-famous squeaky voice was modeled after this song.
  • Stock Food Depictions: The fruit that Yoshis can eat include bunches of three yellow bananas, shiny red apples, clusters of bright purple grapes, and long, thin and red spicy peppers.
  • Storybook Opening: The game features a pop-up storybook. The opening scene presents the first several pages introducing the story. During gameplay, the page turns for each new world. At the end, the storybook reviews all six worlds, the final pages present a happy ending, and the book closes.
  • Suddenly Voiced: This game is the debut of Yoshi's current voice clips (courtesy of Nintendo mainstay Kazumi Totaka, but pitched up), which have been recycled for every subsequent game Yoshi has appeared in since.
  • Theme-and-Variations Soundtrack: All of the music in the first five pages is based on the same melody. The sixth page, however, introduces a new theme called "Baby Bowser's Lullaby," with its own variation in some areas.
  • Toy Time: "The Tall Tower" is made of wooden tinkertoys, and what appear to be old baseballs. The enemies aren't really more toy-themed than usual, though.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: As mentioned above, each Yoshi has its particular favorite taste in fruit and Shy Guys, which are reflected in the health boosts they get from eating their favorite. Each of them get an enhanced boost from standard melons, but specifically, Green likes Watermelon, Red and Pink like Apples, Blue and Light Blue like Grapes, Yellow likes Bananas. Black and White have no real favorite foods, but they can eat peppers, which the normal Yoshis can't eat.
  • Ultra Super Happy Cute Baby Fest Farmer 3000: Being a game intended for younger players, the game is pretty Sugar Bowl-y and, save for certain aspects such as the Melon Quest and some of the minigames such as Special Delivery, is quite lighter in difficulty and stakes compared to its predecessor. To pass each of the levels, you'll only need to eat 30 fruit of any kind, and you have plenty of opportunities to replenish the Smile Meter. The bosses, including Baby Bowser are also easy to defeat.
  • Underground Level: All of Page 2 is known as the "Cavern," but only the first level, Bone Dragon Pit, is truly cave-themed, as it takes place inside the tunnels of a dark cavern.
  • Under the Sea: "Lots O' Fish" and "Lots O' Jellyfish," from Page 5. The Page itself is known as "Ocean," but the other two levels in it are above-ground Palm Tree Panic areas.
  • Unending End Card: With the many different paths one can take and the amount of replay value, you wouldn't expect this trope to come into play here. It does though as you have to reset upon beating any of the possible final levels through Story Mode. However, the game will automatically save your progress once you beat the game.
  • Variable Mix: Every level's theme has two different remixes used for certain situations: a rock remix that plays while the player's chosen Yoshi is Super Happy and a somber, lethargic remix that begins playing when there are no remaining petals on the Smile Meter and the Yoshi is one hit away from being lost.