Captain Toad Treasure Tracker Wii U Review

By | December 3, 2014

Finally Captain Toad and his partner Toadette, have hit the trail on an adventure all of their own. Read on and check out my Captain Toad Treasure Tracker Wii U review. It has to be one of the most charming and enjoyable games to come across the Wii U console.

The two tiny explorers make their way to all corners of the Mushroom Kingdom in search of the golden treasures. Captain Toad Treasure Tracker is a challenging game, especially if you are driven to uncover all of the games well placed hidden items.

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The Toads adventure they embark on is unique from other adventures in the “Mario series” for alot of reasons, but one in particular stands out their abilities are stripped down to the bare bone basics. They can not even jump, also they do not take on any super-powered characters. All they can do is walk, climb ladders, throw turnips, and use headlamps to fend off the ghosts.

toad - treasure

With the simplicity may seem very boring but it works, because you are now more dependent on the elements in the world than with your abilities, to get from point A to point B. You need to find items that are hidden in hard to reach corners of the levels that are dense with paths and possibilities. Ladders, ramps, and moving platforms may yield an avenue to the stage’s goal, a golden star, or they could end up being dead ends…

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Trying to figure out the lay of the land requires you to rotate the camera around the given stage, which, nine times out of ten, fits within the confines of the screen. Should you need a closer look at your surroundings, a quick button press makes the camera zoom in on Toad’s location.

To try and figure out how to get the items needed to complete the level at hand. In order to access these tempting treasure holds, you sometimes have to interact with the Game Pad’s touchscreen to move sliding objects or spin wheels to raise platforms. It is so far one of the very few games that is best played on the Game Pad alone, where you can easily see all of the games visual cues.

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The Toads adventure is packed with more than just puzzles it is riddled with goombas, ghosts, and butt-stomping birds which are just some of the enemies that stand in your way, and they can be especially threatening when you are busy manipulating the stage around you via the Game Pad.

If you are quick enough, however, you can tap the screen and stun them in their tracks. As in most games set in the Mario universe, it takes two blows from an enemy to bring you down. One hit causes you to shrink, and the next will cost you a life and force you to restart the level, unless you manage to find one of the red magic mushrooms.

If you happen to lose all of your lives, the game sets you up in a cave with a tiny field of plants that yield 1-UP mushrooms so that you can replenish your stock before continuing where you left off.

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You don’t spend much time wracking your brain to find a path to the goal in each stage, but you find yourself stumped when searching for hidden gems. At first, you assume these are optional, and possibly forego excavating them in order to progress forward, but you eventually need a certain amount of gems to open new stages.

Some or a lot of backtracking is needed to gather them all. It is very rewarding when you uncover secrets and realize that you have actually learned a thing or two over the course of playing the game.


Once in a while, you take a trip in a minecart, which is filled with turnips that you can toss at enemies and bricks. These moments are a nice break from constant puzzle solving, all you are expected to do is fire away at your surroundings and hang on for the ride, but there are still many gems you need to find, so you need to keep an eye out as you whip around mountain peaks, being sure to target everything in sight in a timely manner.

There are also bonus levels to enjoy after you complete certain levels that get you extra lives and coins. You are able unlock these stages by thoroughly completing the levels, and you have two options … one you enter a level wielding a pickaxe and plow through fields of turnips for rewards, or a level where you have to pick up cherry multiplier items, which create clones of Toad or Toadette, and slide down ramps to collect extra lives.

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There are two bosses that appear multiple times throughout the game, including a fire breathing dragon in a rising lava pit, and an evil bird, Wingo, who just loves to kidnap Toads. Every time you face one or the other, the respective challenge evolves gracefully, requiring stricter timing and attention to your surroundings than ever before.
Wingo toad

In order to totally complete most levels, you need to find every gem and get to the star under extreme conditions. Sometimes that means stealthily slipping past enemies without alerting them or you are challenged to find a golden mushroom in an unlikely place that is invisible other than with a faint sparkle easily to be missed.

For the true treasure tracker there are plenty of challenges that ask you to look at old stages in new ways, and these have to be the most challenging moments in the game.

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Another perk to mention is that if you happen to have Super Mario 3D World saves on your Wii U, you are automatically treated to a selection of bonus levels taken right from that game.Whoo Hooo ! But even if you have not played Super Mario 3D World, fear not, because the same levels open up once you complete the main Treasure Tracker chapters.

There is nothing wrong with extra game play, Agreed?Although these stages are not as mentally stimulating as the main game. Giving you more game value for your hard earned dollar.

My Final Thoughts:

Toad and Toadette’s journey is so interesting because the puzzles and stages are designed around their limited abilities, and almost every moment is spent solving a small part of a larger puzzle. While the bonus stages are adapted to suit the Toads’ skill set with the introduction of ladders and moving platforms, they do not embody the puzzle like structure that makes the rest of the game so great. You still get to enjoy an extended adventure through the Mushroom Kingdom.

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The cartoon, magical Mushroom Kingdom is easy to fall in love with. Ther are layers upon layers of charm. From the goombas in swim rings that flap their little feet underwater, to the tiny birds that land on Toad’s head when he is idly wasting time. Treasure Tracker has a lighthearted and lovable presentation.

It has the right mix of atmosphere and challenging puzzles to keep you engaged. It may have started out as a mini game, but with its original take on the Toad character and a large number of enjoyably tricky puzzles, it’s great to see it in the spotlight it so truly deserves. I look forward to seeing more titles in the game series in the near future.


Have you played Captain Toad Treasure Tracker yet? What did you enjoy or dislike?

My Rating: I give this a 8.5 Out Of 10

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