There were two Nintendo 3DS games that banked on people’s creativity and love of casting people they knew (or “knew”) in starring roles. Both Miitopia and Tomodachi Life succeeded because they were such silly fun. The Miitopia Switch port offers more of that, but the game itself isn’t what’s making it worth playing again. Rather, it’s how creative people can get. The Miitopia Mii Creator is phenomenal on the Switch, and the ease of casting characters with an access key and access to friends’ catalogs of characters might be enough reasons for people to return.
The general basics of Miitopia remain the same. An evil villain is stealing people’s faces. You are an adventurer who ends up allying with people of your choosing to restore people when their visages vanish. Oh, and this time you have a horse for new mounted attacks too. But as always, the fun from it comes from putting people in roles you feel might be well-suited to them based on descriptions or their role. You then use characters you made in the Miitopia Mii creator or that you got from another person’s access key to get situated.
The character creation suite this time around is incredible due to the makeup system. It’s a bit of a misnomer, as it’s more than that. You can tweak a character’s eyes, eyebrows, nose, lips, and other facial features when you access it. In addition to actual cosmetic options you’d expect, there are various objects to use. Some even include transparencies. The masks section even includes an “other” category with more parts. You can send them all around a character’s head to get things “right.” For example, when I started messing around with the game, I created my favorite Genshin Impact characters. Once I tore myself away from that and inputting all sorts of Miitopia access keys to build up a potential cast, I downloaded duplicates of two other characters someone else more talented that me made and turned them into Final Fantasy VII’s Reno and Rude.
And what really helps is how easy it can be to get characters. Yes, there are some caveats. Nintendo again went with a string of letters and numbers situation, so you have to trawl for Miitopia access keys and input them to tap into others’ collections. You also have to have Nintendo Switch Online to share and download characters. But those issues aside, it’s easy to pop in and grab something. Enter a key and go. Visit a friend and you’re set.
Even if you forget, there’s a failsafe. For example, there is a gifted artist who goes by Angle who made Okage: Shadow King characters. They play the roles of many Greenhome castle guards. Though Marlene and Ari are the princess and deposed noble. I forgot to grab Big Bull initially. But Miitopia keeps a record of access keys you used. So I looked back at my search history, explored a few candidates, and soon I had Big Bull as a guard too.
— Jenni Lada (@JMariye) May 25, 2021
It all comes together once you play. Because of the way perspectives work in Miitopia and the arrangement, these intricate designs work. Yes, there might be some times when a face transplanted onto an enemy might not be exact, due to shading. But things tend to line up really well. For example, somewhere in my searching I stumbled across a NieR Replicant Emil Mii. The original creator added extra pieces on the sides of his head to make it look more spherical. When applied to the Great Sage in-game, it worked from multiple angles.
Yes, this is basically the same game. You’re going through the 3DS’ story again. But because the Mii creator lets you do so much and the access keys make it so easy to share, Miitopia feels like it’s worth a second shot. That you can do so much more now and have eerily accurate recreations of some characters and people make it worth another go for the novelty of it. Or, well, grab the demo and play around with the editor for free.
Miitopia is available for the Nintendo Switch.