It’s all about Mii: “Miitopia” review

WSS staffer Carter McLaughlin ’23 takes a look at the Nintendo 3DS classic that’s arrived to the Nintendo Switch, “Miitopia.”

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Carter McLaughlin

“Miitopia” is a spectacularly silly, but enjoyable, game.

Back in the Nintendo Wii era, Miis were introduced as a way for people to make avatars of themselves, their friends and family. The only limit is the imagination. Many games focused on using Miis as the main characters, such as “Wii Sports,” “Nintendo Land” and “Tomodachi Life.”

Although originally released worldwide on the Nintendo 3DS in 2017, “Miitopia” was reissued for the Nintendo Switch on May 21. With its introduction to the most recent system, the game included additional features to make it stand out from the 3DS version. Having played the original, it’s time to share my experience with the new and improved “Miitopia.”

Story 

The world of Miitopia was once a place where the Miis lived in peace and harmony. One day, however, the Dark Lord plagued the land by stealing the faces of Miis and putting them on the bodies of monsters.

As a traveler, one Mii arrives in the happy town of Greenhorne where they meet the Dark Lord face to face before the Dark Lord promptly steals the faces of the townsfolk. With the realization of the Dark Lord’s existence and wickedness, the Mii decides to go on a quest around the world to defeat the Dark Lord, meeting with many new adventurers along the way.

Before traveling to the region of Neksdor, Shaggy refuses to share details to avoid spoilers. (Carter McLaughlin)

The story sounds simple on paper, but it ranges from normal to extravagant depending on the Miis the player chooses to take on the major roles of the game. In my most recent experience, my self-inserted Mii joins forces with characters like Shaggy from Scooby-Doo and Baymax to stop the Dark Lord Squidward.

 

Rating the story of “Miitopia” is heavily variable when the game can either be a serious quest or be more like a weirdly written fanfiction. With most characters being from completely different media universes for my playthrough, the story makes very little sense, but it’s enjoyable experiencing it.

Cassandra Michaels

 

Gameplay

As a role-playing game, the player is free to explore as much or as little of the world as they want. The game comes down to combat and interactions outside of combat. When in combat, the player only has control over the Mii they chose as the protagonist. 

The game starts out with six jobs for Miis to play as, and it also has seven personalities the player can choose for the Miis. Before a new party member does combat, the player will have a general idea of what the Mii will do. The game also gives the player more job options over time, allowing several team compositions to be made.

While the game has common RPG jobs like mage and cleric, it also has unusual ones like pop star. (Carter McLaughlin)

With only control of the protagonist, there’s a high chance that another Mii won’t do what the player wants them to do. Even though it can be frustrating for team members to do things that aren’t the best choice, it adds charm as the Miis are NPCs and not players. 

Outside of combat, the player can help increase the relationship between the party members as well as buy new equipment for the party to use in combat. Relationships between party members allow powerful support abilities to happen in combat, such as a party member pitching in for an attack to cause more damage.

Just as quickly as relations can build up, they can also be broken. Resentment can be caused by either random events, or based on specific abilities personalities and jobs have. When Miis have resentment towards each other, they can do less in combat until they forgive one another.

The player’s Mii is able to use a powerful Horse Whispering ability that changes depending on the job. (Carter McLaughlin)

The horse is a new feature to the Switch version and can be seen as an additional party member. It supports the party based on relationships with the horse rather than being a true fifth member. In combat, there’s a chance the Miis can ride the horse to do mounted attacks as well as the horse being able to do many more supportive abilities with a high enough relationship level.

 

Outings were also introduced in the Switch version and are an additional way for Miis to build relationships with each other. By using outing tickets, two Miis can go to places like the library and the beach to interact. 

The game has a weird mix between full control of what happens and lack thereof. I enjoy the parts outside of combat a lot, but the combat seemed fairly bland most times. Watching Miis interact with one another was always fun, but when I have to watch Miis in combat, I always wish I could take control of all of the Miis rather than just my Mii. 

Cassandra Michaels

 

Presentation

The Citrus Cave is just one of many diverse places the player will explore. (Carter McLaughlin)

The number of different spots the land of Miitopia takes the player to are all beautiful, and all of the music that goes along with the locations is great to hear. The monsters that the player encounters are also both cool and wacky.

With the Switch version, the presentation is easily the best part of the game. Now on the big screen, the details of the game are cleaner and the areas the player visits look even better. 

The biggest thing the Switch adds relative to the 3DS version is the introduction of makeup and wigs to the Miis. The creation of a Mii already had very few limitations, but makeup has made it possible for Miis to be so much more. A lot of creative people across Twitter and YouTube have shared possibilities on what characters can be made in the game.

Cassandra Michaels

 

Overall

On its own, the game may not have been the most interesting to play for me. However, thanks to the vast amount of new Miis made by players, the game has a lot of replayability. Even if the general story will be the same, the impact is always different based on what Miis are being used.

When comparing the 3DS version and the Switch version, the Switch amplifies everything the 3DS had. For a game that was originally made for a device with two screens, the Switch handles the issues well.

If someone wanted it for the customization, which could definitely be something people can spend many hours on, the demo allows full access to the makeup and wigs really early on. I would also recommend watching videos of other people playing the game whether someone plans to get the game or not because of how many different experiences “Miitopia” allows.

Cassandra Michaels