Anniversary marks chance to recognize ‘Yoshi’ greatness

Editor’s Note: This is an article in our ongoing “Great Video Game” series in which readers and staffers alike are asked to submit a few hundred words about a video game that they consider to be great.

By Joshua Madden
A&E Editor

Many of the uninformed in the audience may not realize that today marks a very special day in video gaming history. “Yoshi’s Story,” for the Nintendo 64, was released 14 years ago today in North America.

So no, “Yoshi’s Story” cannot yet purchase cigarettes or alcohol or even rent a car, but that’s probably not a big deal since Yoshi never goes to stores with a “No Shirt, No Service” policy. I would’ve thought that in this modern day and age we would be more open-minded, but unfortunately Yoshis are still very much discriminated against.

“Yoshi’s Story” is one of those games that seldom comes up in great video game discussions, despite the fact that a large portion of our generation spent time playing it. I’m not sure what it says about our childhood that we chose to stay inside playing as a fictional lizard jumping around on clouds, but that’s what we did and it was fun.

My personal favorite aspect of “Yoshi’s Story” was the ability to unlock “White Yoshi” and “Black Yoshi” who had special abilities that the other Yoshis didn’t have. I’m not 100 percent sure what happened to “Hispanic Yoshi” and “Asian Yoshi,” so I assume that they were cut during the development process.

I’m still sure, however, that because of the option to play as Yoshis of so many color, “Yoshi’s Story” must be a real smash hit at the United Nations. From my understanding, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is a major fan of the game, although China is always threatening to veto his requests to build a “Yoshi’s Story” game room somewhere in the U.N. offices.

I would summarize the plot here, but there’s not one. You spent your time eating fruit and chasing down Baby Bowser. It is much like being a member of PETA, except it’s more fun and you get to keep your dignity.

The artistic style was remarkably creative. If Salvador Dali had spent time designing video games instead of painting melting clocks, he wouldn’t have created anything even half as trippy as “Yoshi’s Story.”

Due to the playability and the artistry, “Yoshi’s Story” has earned a place as a great video game.

Does reading this article make you think of a video game that you consider great? Please send us an email at with a suggestion for a “Great Video Game.” Please include a few hundred words on why you consider your game to be great and you just might find your opinion here.