What if I told you that Nintendo had created another game that was ridiculously addicting like Animal Crossing, but in completely different ways? When I first popped in Tomodachi Life, at first I was pretty unimpressed with what it had to offer. Instead of having a world that I could create and fully interact with like in Animal Crossing, i’m more or less a God-like spectator who watches over all of the town’s citizens. However, what at first seemed boring quickly transformed into a world with a bizarre sense of humor and zany scenarios that I couldn’t get enough of.
When Tomodachi Life begins you are asked to create a Mii that is your look-alike. This Mii will be the first resident of the town and thus will begin the life on this little island. What’s fantastic about the creator mechanics in this game is that you can pick what your Mii sounds like, which is fantastic considering the game has full voice-support for all dialogue. When I heard my Mii say back to me my name, birthday and favorite color I was beaming. I’ve always been a fan of Nintendo’s simple-yet-expressive Mii’s, but actually hearing mine talk was another experience entirely.
It isn’t until you start creating other residents of the island when the true fun begins. You have the option to create other Mii’s manually or scan them in through QR codes that you can find online. This is what I ultimately ended up doing, as I was able to find QR codes for Batman, Master Chief, Harry Potter and a bunch of other awesome characters. Soon enough, I had an island overflowing with characters that you would never expect to see in the same game and watching them interact and become friends is awesome. In my particular game, Uncle Rico from Napoleon Dynamite and Woody from Toy Story are best friends, which never fails to make me laugh whenever I see them hanging out together.
As life on the island progresses and you add more and more Mii’s you will find that new places will appear for your Mii’s to hangout in. Places like coffee shops and amusement parks all provide unique ways for the Mii’s to interact with one another, potentially providing you with another zany scenario for you to witness. One of my personal favorite places is the Mii News station, where one of the island’s Mii’s will report the latest major happening on the island, which is always something completely insane. One particular news story talked about how Thor bought a Power Disco Ball, and suddenly he had a string of good luck that he credited entirely to the purchase of said Power Disco Ball. He reported that he found a tooth brush in the street, his laryngitis went away in 5 days and his acne cleared up by 10%. Who thinks of this stuff?
The true depth of Tomodachi Life comes in the form of you interacting and assisting the island’s Mii’s when they need your help. When you do something good for the Mii, their happiness level will increase and you will get some money. This money is used to purchase all matter of food, clothes, furniture and a bunch of strange items that your Mii’s will be begging for. Sometimes a Mii will be hungry and you will have to go and buy their favorite food, and other times they will be bored and ask you to play with them.When playing with a Mii you are usually given one of several very simple mini-games, such as trivia, card games and reflex-based games. While there is really nothing to these games, they are less about providing actual gameplay then they are providing brief bursts of humor. Sometimes you will come across one of your Mii’s sleeping with a dream bubble above their head, and you can tap on the bubble to see what it is they are dreaming about. The last time I played Master Chief was having a dream about him and a bunch of the islanders dancing around a dish containing a fried spring roll, and all of them were chanting, “All hail the fried spring roll!” I wanted to laugh so hard, but I feared I might wake the Master Chief from his slumber.
The only true fault of the game is that it’s one that really has no purpose or goal. Unlike in Animal Crossing where you are constantly improving your home and paying off your debt, Tomodachi Life‘s only true purpose is to check in and see what’s going on. This will be a bummer for some, as if you’re not in tune with the game’s style of humor then you will probably get bored with the game rather quickly. However, taken in small to medium bouts of gameplay I found that the game always held my attention and made me laugh more often then not.
Tomodachi Life is yet another kind life simulator game that is able to stand on its own feet thanks to its charming style and bizarre humor. It’s a game where you feel like you have little to no control of what is going on, and depending on where you’re sitting that could be very good or very bad. In my opinion, though, this game never fails to provide consistent displays of greatly charming and humorous scenarios when ever I pop it in to play. It may not be an Animal Crossing replacement, but it’s a game that I can confidently say is its own unique experience that should be checked out by anyone looking for some light-hearted and goofy life-simulation.