While he wasn’t part of the original Super Mario Brothers, in fact, he didn’t come around until much later in the series during the 4th full game, Super Mario World, Yoshi is as iconic to the Mario series as any of the main cast. The popular Dino has even gotten several of his own spin off games. He certainly makes sense as an addition to the Mario Figuarts lineup.
Yoshi is quite a different little figure than Mario and Luigi, for the obvious reasons that, he’s a Dinosaur and not a plumber. He’s actually a quite a bit more dynamic in some ways as a result. His skinnier arms give him a lot more flexibility for outward motion than the Mario Brothers. While his hips can rotate outward as well, he doesn’t have any knees. I’m not sure where they would put the knees considering how short his legs are, not to mention the addition of knees would probably hurt his major gimmick.
That major gimmick? Mario can ride Yoshi.
Included among Yoshi’s accessories are two alternate shell pieces each with a clear saddle attached to hold Figuarts Mario or Luigi. It’s a bit tricky to get Mario’s weight to balance on Yoshi without the use of a stand however. Mario is a pretty heavy figure and sticking all that weight on the back of poor little Yoshi really sets things off balance. It’s still a really nice touch to have it as an option given 90% of Yoshi’s function is carrying Mario around on his back.
Yoshi’s other accessories are all based on alternate configurations for Yoshi. He doesn’t have any power ups or blocks, likely because Yoshi is a bit larger than either of the Mario Brothers and he has parts like the saddle shell pieces, all of which already drive the price up. One of the driving forces of these Mario Figuarts seems to be keeping them fairly affordable ($20-$40 vs the $50-$100 price of some Figuarts).
Yoshi includes an extra set of eyes so he can look off to the side, an alternate mouth insert with an extended tongue, and an alternate set of hands. He also includes a stand. He doesn’t need the stand at all to hold himself up under normal power, and the hole for the stand is directly on the bottom of Yoshi anyway, the stand is meant to allow Yoshi to jump or hover like he does in the games.
The hands are slightly disappointing. Yoshi has two fists and two open hands, but one of the open hands has an egg permanently attached to it. It doesn’t come off, you’ll only break it trying. Considering the Mario Brothers already gave us a method to attach objects to open palm hands with the turtle shells, it’s kind of disappointing that the egg can’t be removed in this same manner. The egg would have made a great accessory for use with the other figures and having two bare open hands for Yoshi would have been a great plus.
The tongue is a bit disappointing as well, though it may just be a problem on mine. Basically, it doesn’t stay attached very well at all. It’s not even a problem due to weight or balance, the pegs on the underside of the mouth piece simply don’t properly peg into the pegs in his mouth. The real benefit that the tongue piece provides is that it means the mouth can open and close, something that I imagine wouldn’t have been a feature if it hadn’t been a necessity to allow for the tongue piece to work.
While it’s still probably the best Yoshi Figure available, and it’s a good figure to be sure, There are a few little issue that keep it from being completely amazing. Specifically the egg hand and the finicky-ness of how some of the accessories attach. The riding feature really helps push the figure up an extra notch if you have Mario or Luigi to go with him however.