If you’re a fan of retro inspired 2D platformers you’ll definitely want to give Turtle Tale a look.  In fact you might have done so already – the game debuted on 3DS just a few months ago.  It was a worthwhile game on the handheld and (despite having just a few minor tweaks) I think it’s even better on Wii U.

Turtle Tale Wii U - icon

The most obvious change is being able to play Turtle Tale in HD.  I’ve been mixed on 3DS ports to Wii U – I often miss the stereoscopic 3D – but in this case it’s a great trade-off.  The 3D effects weren’t all that remarkable anyway, but the HD visuals really help Turtle Tale make more of an impact.  Colorful and smooth with some small improvements, Turtle Tale is simply more enjoyable to play on a large HD TV than it is on 3DS.  To be fair the small improvements can be applied to the 3DS version via an update, but it still falls behind the HD Wii U port.

Other minor enhancements include a bit more recovery time, a small bug fix, and a slight toning down of some of the shriller sound effects.  Overall though this is very much the same game as it was on 3DS – not surprising since both versions were in development so close to each other.  This means that if you enjoy a more straightforward, family friendly platformer, you’ll enjoy Turtle Tale.

One aspect I touched on last time but want to reiterate is this game’s difficulty.  Turtle Tales’ second quest (unlocked by collecting all the fruits) offers an intense challenge, and an ample contrast to the main game.  It offended my journalistic sensibilities how some critics failed to even address this when covering the title initially – it’s half the game!  Worth the effort to unlock, the second quest gives Turtle Tale some real legs.

I had fun revisiting Turtle Tale, picking up my water gun and helping Shelldon reclaim his home from Captain O’Haire  – once again it evoked nostalgic memories for me.  Despite being essentially the same game, I’m scoring Turtle Tale higher on the Wii U for the following reasons.  The HD visuals and other small enhancements swayed me much more than I expected.  And I don’t want my score to give the impression that there’s no differences, especially with this superior Wii U port selling for the same low price of just $2.99 – 33% less if you’re in Europe.  Platforming across Turtle Island is quite enjoyable, and worth experiencing.