Review: Miitopia

I’m not exactly sure why Nintendo decided to port over Miitopia to the Nintendo Switch but you can now play a remaster of the Nintendo 3DS game. While I played the original on the Nintendo 3DS, it was never something I thought I’d return to but as the game has found another home with the Switch, I figured it’d be good to revisit the quirky RPG from Nintendo that incorporates Miis in a fun and interesting way.

Miis have been a staple of Nintendo since the launch of the Nintendo Wii in 2006. We’ve seen them in Wii Sports, as well as other titles that allow you to use your Mii, like Mario Kart 8 o Wii Fit. So, it’s curious to see them star in their own title eleven years later for the Nintendo 3DS that allows you to use Miis in an RPG. While the presentation is rather silly, the game itself is fun to play.

Miitopia plays on familiar beats, such as asking your Mii to save the kingdom from the Dark Lord, the great thing about this title is it pulls Miis from the community and fills the game with them creating a unique experience that only Nintendo can replicate. While I found it gimmicky, it was certainly very Nintendo in execution.

Miitopia is fun in small sessions

The Dark Lord is stealing faces and using said faces to fuel his monster army, it’s rather distressing seeing the face of my friend on a giant monster out to kill me, but, it’s also rather liberating, due to all the times my friend drank my beer at a bar or a party. As the hero of Miitopia, you are tasked to build a party and rid the land of the Dark Lord. If you don’t like the faces of your friends and enemies, you can head online and pick from other people’s creations from all over the world.

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This is a class-based title that features 12 classes and to a lesser extent, personalities, which include Kind, Energetic, Laid-back, Cool, Stubborn, Airheaded and Cautious. Kind, for example, will protect your allies in battle, being cool allows you to dodge attacks, stubborn will repeat actions, etc. Jobs include standards like a mage, warrior, thief and then others like scientist, princess, pop star and chef. To compare, the job system is reminiscent of games like Dragon Quest or Bravely Default, as they help determine your character’s stats and skills. It’s exciting learning and unlocking new classes and abilities and utilizing them in battle, and the steady pace of unlocking everything rolls out at a commendable pace.

Quest Love

Miitopia is through and through a traditional RPG where you and your enemy take turns attacking each other. You oversee your character; however, your party is largely automated and acts following the situation, it sounds simple, but Nintendo incorporates its class and personality systems into the bigger picture and utilizes them into combat.

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Having your team grow closer and dependant on each other as you adventure and battle throughout the world. Each character that joins can grow and have relationships with individual characters, growing closer will give them bonuses. The results vary depending on who but your team might be in danger for example and one teammate is near death, someone they are close to will jump in and take the hit, or attack right after them and deal double the damage. This isn’t even all you’ll see, there are numerous ways friendships will play out.

There is no overworld, instead, you traverse in a Super Mario World-Esque world map that has many explorable areas that feature branching paths that hide treasure and items to collect. A lot of the exploration is automated and on-rails and for the most part, you move through each section while collecting, battling, and exploring.

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Inns are essential to growth, here you feed your Miis as well as play minigames and purchase new gear, you can even socialize and date! It isn’t your typical experience however, it’s hands-off in a sense, but the experience makes up for what you are used to seeing in other games. It’s a pleasant experience for the most part and does appeal to the classical RPG mechanics we’ve grown accustomed to.

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While my time near the end of Miitopia began to wear me down, the simplicity of the story offers a fun, simple experience. Kids will certainly love using the Miis and perfecting their party and the mechanics are solid enough to be enjoyable. There isn’t much in terms of new content but if you want something that’ll make you laugh and introduce your kids to a new genre, taking up arms against the Dark Lord would be one of the best ways to do that. For what it is, Miitopia is a fun romp through the quirky side of Nintendo’s offerings.

[A copy of the game was provided by the publisher for review purposes.]

Reviewed on: Nintendo Switch