Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker

Captain Toads Treasure Tracker Wii U review.

Many Mario characters are having their turn in the spotlight, with Peach having her own lead in the brilliant Super Princess Peach DS. Yoshi, having Super Mario world 2 Yoshi’s Island, Yoshi’s NEW island along with upcoming titles too. Luigi, having 2013 dedicated to him and a handful of titles. toad2I did ask myself during the time of Mario Galaxy when Toad would have his turn. A nice touch in Mario 3D World sees Toad appear as a playable character for the first time since Super Mario Bros 2, but he never quite had a lead role. Finally, 2014 brings him forward as the character of his very own game.

If you were a fan of the Toad mini games in Mario 3D world and never threw your Wii U pad at the screen in frustration, then this game is right up your street.
It’s recently rumoured to have originally been a Legend of Zelda game, though I don’t see how it would work for such a demanding RPG.

Like Mario 64, Mario Galaxy has now laid the foundations for the new direction and uniqueness we find in Mario games now.

When you take the plunge into the game, you will experience the familiarity of the Toad mini games mentioned earlier, but this is on a much grander scale. The team behind the mini levels are also responsible for this title.

Toad and Toadette are travelling through the Mario Galaxy treasure tracking. Out of nowhere a large black bird, ‘Wingo,’ swoops down to steal their treasure. In an attempt to stop him Toadette grabs Wingo’s foot and get’s taken away along with the treasure. It’s up-to Toad to find Wingo, reclaim the treasure and rescue Toadette.
toad3Toad has to navigate his way around fully rotatable levels with interactive objects, enemies, collectables and stars. The difficulty ranges from quite basic to tricky and potentially tedious, but not impossible.
It looks just like it has leapt out Super Mario 3d world, to the extent that on bonus levels you will play through some of the levels from Super Mario 3d world.

Like most modern Mario games, collecting the star will finish the level.
Similar features to Super Mario 3d world are present, but it also has a few of its own. The game utilising the touchpad in a great way, to rotate staircases, hold an enemy in it’s tracks, and to move platforms as well as many other uses. The touch pad is also very responsive and the stylus provides enhanced precision.

The controls are very simple, Captain Toad does not jump, which takes a little getting used to.
Y B and A all give Toad a small boost when running. The left analogue controls Toads movement and the right pans the camera. The camera panning is not as good as it could have been on some of the larger levels as sometimes the zoom on the level is quite far out. Sometimes navigating around the courses can be tricky, but thankfully X zooms right in on your character.
toad4There are some nifty tools like a pickaxe you can pick up that only last briefly, but they can be used to smash blocks to get to items and passageways.
You can’t fight enemies, you have to evade them, but there are resources such as Bullet Bills and cannon and some of the environment that can be rotated with an valve and aimed towards them, as well as other great things such as mine cart rails.

toad5Without giving too much away, Toadette also becomes a playable character in the game when you reach the games twist.

Keeping to Mario tradition, the levels greatly vary, and the environment between levels change, with the bright sunny levels, ghost house, water and lava levels, some of them have adjustable platforms taking Toad to new heights. Each level has a special requirement to earn giving them extra playability, and after every few levels there is a boss battle with enormous foes.

There seems to be no end to Nintendos genius, innovation, vision and new directions in Mario games. This game is no exception, though I say Mario games, it’s Toad’s game, which is the point.
This isn’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea, but for many, it will be a very enjoyable and memorable experience. It’s an excellent game and fantastic to see the mini-game in Mario 3D world come to its own full version.

#NetflixStreamteam December

THE ULTIMATE SURVIVAL GUIDE

Boxing Day – New to Netflix

The excitement of Christmas can only last so long, and once you’ve managed to get the relatives out of the door to reclaim your personal space, why not beat the Boxing Day blues with some ‘me’ time – you deserve it!

Kids

After the kids have finished ripping open all of their Christmas presents and promptly got bored of their gifts, try some of this great content to keep them happy for a little longer

Teenagers

No matter how many times you ask, you will receive the same blank expression when you request for some help peeling the potatoes. So while they sit glued to their tablets instead of in the kitchen, why don’t they watch one of these

Mum and Dad

Christmas Day has come to an end, the kids are asleep but you’ve been caught up in the rush and haven’t had a minute to relax. Thankfully Netflix has lots of comedy specials so you can finish the day with a smile

Family

After the post turkey lull and the tears from the annual family game of Monopoly have dried up, there’s nothing better than settling down to watch a great story together, with some of our favourites below

One Place In The World We Love To Be.

If anyone ever asks where my favourite place in the world is, they are always a little taken aback when I say “Wales”  Well South Wales that is. A little place called Oxwich Bay on the Gower peninsular. Voted one of the world’s most beautiful beaches, which may come as a surprise to some.

But I have been holidaying here since way back when. It’s a place my family always return to, even more so since we all grew up.

I myself have never been abroad. I have always stayed right here in the UK, finding all the little jewels my own country has to offer and they are vast, albeit well hidden.

Oxwich bay doesn’t have a lot to offer attraction wise. But the beauty of this small village and the people who live here are enough to keep you coming back year on year.

The hotel practically on the beach has become the must have wedding venue. Set in the forefront of the beautiful forest the runs alongside the village, it’s a wonderful place to eat and stay.

Who doesn’t want to dine on the beachfront and watch the sun go down?

Just look how beautiful it is…

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The beach is stunning, with hundreds of rock pools and total freedom for the kids, we can spend all day here, hidden away from the world. Forgetting about the fact I have multiple sclerosis and just enjoy each other.

The sea is crystal clear and many a treasure can be found, and I’m not just talking about the hundreds of shells…

oxwich finds

I think Oxwich will forever be our got to place. Maybe it will even become the girl’s too? It’s a place untouched by commercialism, a place where you can forget the fast paced world and relax. Perfect.

The three things we love about Oxwich Bay?

The scenery, it’s stunning, even on rainy days.

The people. We have made friends for life here, that’s something we will never lose.

And finally, the fact its here in the UK. It’s so close yet remains so hidden and untouched.

 

This is our entry into the Tale Of Three Cities Competiton.

 

 

Our Fire Side Fiction Favourites

This is our entry into the #Currysfiresidefiction competition. Both ourselves and extended family love a bit of fiction. whether its in the form of a book or a TV show/film, so we thought we would tell you about a couple of our favourites found over the year.

We will start with books, and our book of choice is The Bone Season.

The Bone Season is a fantastic book that is the début novel for Samantha Shannon and it is incredible. A read like never before you follow the life of Paige Mahoney in the year 2059. The world is not as we know it now, there is a new order and people with gifts such as Clairvoyance and psychic abilities are hunted like criminals.

One day Paige is drugged and kidnaped. When she regain consciousness she is in Oxford, a captive, policed by Raphaites. Assigned to an individual Warden Paige slowly discovers the horrors that Oxford now holds.

A completely unique tale, Shannon has created a world that captivates and grips you from start to finish. A must read. 

Next is a little different, but a real corker, The 2014 Transformers movie, Age of Extinction.

transformers

Now this movie didn’t get the best ratings, compared to the others. However from a personal perspective, I loved it.

It was the first film Ben and I have been to see in the cinema together after five years of marriage (yes, madness) Although I felt the beginning of the film could have done with some changes with the story telling as far as how the new “creators” got there in the first place. Now the Autobots are being hunted for their metal to use to create a new breed of robots.

The type the humans can control.

But after melting down parts of Mega Tron, these new creations took on a life of their own and soon the Autobots were needed to save the day.

The graphics and soundtrack gave the movie a more emotional connection. I was on the edge of my seat the whole time worrying about Optimus and the gang.

This movie did do a fantastic job of setting up the scene for the next installment, which for me made me forget a little about the slightly odd start.

I cannot wait for the next movie, which I know will be full of more “edge of my seat” moments!

If you want to join in and have the chance to win a fab tech bundle from Currys, then please take a look. 

 

We Are #KurioFamilyBloggers Our First Look…

So, we became Kurio Family Bloggers thanks to a heartfelt plea from Ninny. She will be using the Kurio XL tab to create youtube videos for her new channel, as well as playing the many games.

These are few of my own initial thoughts on the Kurio XL…

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The Kurio XL is a 10 inch tablet, designed specifically for kids. It comes with a charger, a stand and this lovely rubbery case. The sheer size of the tablet was first thing that hit us. Its the perfect size for Ninny as she struggles with her eyes, so with the Kurio XL she is able to see everything clearly and comfortably.

A couple of years back we actually won the original Kurio Tab, so we were really excited to see how much it had changed over the years and whether improvements had been made.

They have.

The display is crystal clear, easy to navigate for both adults and children. The Kurios best feature is the safety aspect, it’s a tablet which is designed to keep the kids safe whilst online, and make it easy to use for little people. It has come a long way over two years and it seems to have harnessed all the changes needed, it’s grown with technology and it really is something I will be recommending.

The Kurio XL tab comes with 50 preinstalled apps, which have kept Ninny entertained for hours, other than Youtube, she has not asked for any other apps to be installed. WIN!

Being an android based tablet, this means you have access to everything the play store offers, as well as the fabulous educational, fun apps the Kurio store offers. A huge bonus.

The XL tab also has aHMDI port, which is something we were thrilled with, it makes it super easy to connect to the TV.

By far the most intriguing thing for me was the whole “motion” aspect of the Kurio XL, not something I have seen in other tablets, especially ones for children. I was looking forward to seeing how they have incorporated this into the games.

Ninny was recently playing a cooking game, in which she has to bake a cake, I noticed she was using the motion control to pour ingredients into the mix and then into the other bowl, it was lovely to watch her interaction with the tablet grow and I can see the Motion aspect of the tablet is something she will explore further in weeks to come!

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Over the coming weeks, both me and Ninny will be posting updates on the Kurio XL tab and exploring everything it has to offer, so stay tuned!