Reviews - Updated on April 13, 2022

Relevant for the platform: 3DS

Every Nintendo 3DS owner has logged into the StreetPass Mii Plaza app at least once out of curiosity. There, among other mini-games, there is Save Mii, where funny avatars of real people participate in the straightforward rescue of the princess. In Miitopia, this idea was crossed with the avatar life simulator Tomodachi Life and turned into a real Japanese RPG in the spirit of Dragon Quest.Miitopia game review

This could be your first face-to-face meeting with Gabe Newell.

If you don’t have a mother-in-law…

Now you can defeat universal evil in the company of your best friend, Destiny partner, wife, sister, and even a dog if you manage to make her a Mii. The main villain can be a hated boss, a successful friend or an annoying teacher, and random heroes in local cities and palaces can be members of your favorite hockey team or the same girls from your 18+ video collection.

The story that happened in the country of Myitopia is unpretentious. The Dark Lord (not the one you thought of) began to steal faces from the inhabitants and distribute them to monsters, and a company of valiant heroes went on a campaign against him. But since we appoint all the actors ourselves, it turns out to be hilarious. If you don’t have many friends on the console, you can create new Mii as you go, or use the suggested characters, which are full of celebrities, real and not. I organized a love triangle where the brave but helpless Satoru Iwata fought with the cowardly and deceitful Reggie Fils-Aim for the love of Princess Midna, daughter of the fat King Gaben.

The plot in a comedy, where you arrange the characters yourself, is the third thing, Miitopia takes, first of all, the fact that people familiar to us find themselves in funny situations. They also perform roles that are atypical for JRPGs.

cats and flowers

Having retained some familiar elements of the genre, the creators (and this is one of Nintendo’s internal studios) laughed at many things that are common for Japanese role-playing games. In addition to standard professions such as a warrior, magician and thief, the hero can be made into a cat, a pop star or a flower. True, each class will always be combat or magic, attacking or supporting, so the balance in battles is completely classic. But it’s much more interesting when the main “tank” in the team is with soft paws and sharp claws.Miitopia game review

Professions in Miitopia: everything is very frivolous.

The obligatory “old school” bravado of bombastic dialogues in JRPGs was replaced by numerous jokes in the spirit of the series “Friends”. Knowledge of English is, of course, necessary here, because the witticisms are very good, especially if they somehow fit in with the behavior of the real person on the basis of which the Mii was created. Dialogues and skits will gradually begin to repeat themselves, but before that a good ten hours will pass.

In battles with monsters, our Fantastic Four act in turn. That’s just you can control only the main character. To help the rest, we are given … salt shakers. They replenish life or magic points, resurrect the dead and give status “buffs”. To the credit of the AI, the uncontrolled part of the team acts quite logically: they use different abilities, manage to heal and cover their comrades. There are occasional moments of inconsistency, such as when the heroine eats a healing banana instead of waiting for a priest (healing mage) to help her, but in general, if you do not have a fad about total control of the party, there will be no problems.

Repetition is the mother of torment

We travel around the world, too, is not quite usual. Any location is a small level for about five minutes, and our gang goes through it independently. The player sometimes chooses where to turn, which lever to press and check out those suspiciously rustling bushes. And at the end of each segment there is a hotel where you can recuperate. The global map and the traditional “flying ship” will also be here, but not immediately and not at all like what you are used to.Miitopia game review

After hundreds of levels, you will think like my Mii…

With all the limitations and simplifications, Miitopia resembles a mobile game: it is very convenient to approach it for a short time, after a week’s break you can not remember the combination of characteristics and equipment, the narrative looming in the background does not make you get lost in its intricacies. At the same time, due to the microstructure, we are simply provoked to long gatherings – you promise yourself: “Here is another fork in the road, and I’ll quit”, you stumble upon an interesting “boss” or a new quest, and in the end you find that in one sitting you ran for an hour and a half.

The opposite may also happen. After numerous walks along similar paths with fairly simple battles and repetitions of scenes, it will become boring. Nintendo was well aware of this weakness and provided, for example, an event acceleration button, and also tried, as far as possible for a “casual” and almost plotless RPG, to diversify the events that happen to the characters. Our Mii will be divided, kidnapped and sent to a hospital bed – clearly in order not to want to put the 3DS aside.

Between cheese and chainsaw

Episodes in the hotel are completely drawn to a separate story – it is here that we set up not only the parameters of the characters, but also their relationship. After settling into one room, a couple of heroes – no, they don’t make a third one, Fire Emblem fans – get used to each other and gradually “pump” the level of reciprocity. And if a barely familiar partner can only slightly increase the attack of a comrade, then old friends are able to attack together with a double or tripled force and take revenge on the villains for the killed party members.Miitopia game review

Sometimes heroes can quarrel – then they will interfere with each other in battles.

In hotel cafes, our Mii can have a delicious meal – and you need to bring food with you, having previously collected it from monsters. There are more dishes here than any gourmet can imagine, from a minotaur burger and gorilla protein to magical elven potions. Each treat improves certain parameters. In addition, the saviors of Myitopia are terrible picky people and do not like everything. Feed the hated stewed snail to the cat – and the effect of it will be much weaker than from your favorite snow milk.

Finally, it is in between battles that we buy new equipment for the team. Rather, strong and independent avatars do it themselves, and you only need to distribute the budgets accumulated on the battlefields and research. True, it is not always possible to get the right thing from Mii – sometimes they return with a bunch of bananas already mentioned. But at least they bring change.

In addition, in each hotel you can play two mini-games: roulette and Rock, Paper, Scissors. The first allows you to get the same healing curds and crippling chainsaws without any money, and the second – these same coins. Other additional entertainment will be found on the way – they are also simple and allow you to get hold of “loot”.

“Without friends, I am a little bit, but with friends – a lot”

The journey in search of faces turned out to be decent even by the standards of the genre – it would take more than 30 hours just to run to a happy ending without having studied every track. Therefore, impressions will largely depend on your creativity and socialization. Theoretically, new heroes can be obtained even through StreetPass, but even in our capital it is not easy to meet the owner of the console.Miitopia game review

As expected, there is a bestiary, a bunch of “achievements”, and a special button for screenshots.

It is clear that there is no need to wait for special frills from simple fun, and even on the 3DS, but Miitopia is made very diligently. The textures of some items and monsters are as cute as some Kirby, there is a very pleasant effect of volume in battles and levels, and the soundtrack here is such that at least publish it separately and run it on children’s matinees. And although the box with the game is marked “Over 18 years old”, and the Russian translation has not been delivered, the adventures of avatars can be offered to younger brothers and sisters and children – everything is clear here without words.

***

We are used to the fact that Japanese RPGs are pretty hardcore stuff. There you need to set up gambits, pair Pokemon, “pump” for hours and watch screensavers about heroic deeds. There is nothing like this in Miitopia, and that’s what makes it great. For those who have already managed to replay all the serious role-playing games and want something simpler, this is an ideal option. If your tastes are not so specific, then the journey may seem monotonous and shallow. This, of course, is true, but you also need to take a break from AAA projects, and best of all in a relaxed atmosphere – with a girlfriend, Ozzy Osbourne, and a short guy named Putin.

Pros: the ability to direct a JRPG with yourself and friends in the lead roles; frivolous presentation and banter over genre clichés; excellent social part; Lightweight and uncomplicated mechanics are ideal for fun on the go.

Cons: the levels are similar to each other and gradually get bored; the combat system is superficial and does not give full control over the characters.

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