How does one accurately gage adorableness? I am unfamiliar with any sort of metric for this type of evaluation. All I know is that when I look at Yoshi's Woolly World my my eyes get really big and start to sparkle lightly, by mouth turns into some terrifying mix of a cat face and a large toothy smile, and I emit an unnatural noise I can only describe as a squee. This is Yoshi's Woolly World's gift to humanity. I'm not sure I'm entirely comfortable with the process, but I'm happy that it's something that can both exist and thrive in the greater gaming community.
The actual playing of Yoshi's Woolly World is much less exciting to me than simply viewing it, respecting it from afar. Those who have played Kirby's Epic Yarn, Woolly World's predecessor both in punny name and threadbare mechanics, will know exactly what sort of game they're playing. It's 2D platform at its most basic, only tuned to take into account the eccentric qualities that Yoshi games have have established over the years. Platforming in Yoshi's Woolly World is simple. It's not bad in any sense, it's just not especially challenging or complex.
Those Yoshi unique characteristics should be fully known to anyone who has play a Yoshi's Island title. Yoshi's overly long, floaty jumping is a feature of the game, as his robust egg-laying and throwing mechanics. In many ways they're an evolution of Kirby's swallowing and star shooting, so it's really no surprise that Yoshi has inherited the franchise. Not to mention that the damn dinosaur looks just as adorable as Kirby when made in yarn.
Considering Yoshi's skills mirror Kirby's mechanically in many ways, it should be surprising to hear that the demo featured a ton of Kirby's Epic Yarn-type content. String ties that when pulled upon reveal new platforms or areas, secret areas only visible after moving into the area of the 2D platform, and trigger blocks or items that when struck turn into veritable yarn explosions, growing into yarn flowers or other yarn creations. Basic platforming, simple puzzles, tons of secrets and even more collectibles are Yoshi's Woolly World's pillars of design.
The demo included only a handful of levels, each very early from the game. That is to say that the low level of difficulty could change later in the game. If Yoshi's Woolly World continues to follow in Kirby's Epic Yarn's footsteps however, I truly doubt that. In fact, I'd prefer that it not become more difficult. I loved Kirby's Epic Yarn for its atmosphere and dedication to cheerfulness. It'd be very disappointing for Yoshi's Woolly World to discard that. That said, all evidence points to Nintendo delivering the experience that fans of the franchise want.
A new audience may also be found with Yoshi's Woolly World, too. Yoshi's Island has built itself a very dedicated following in the Nintendo community due to its precision controls, potential for high speed movement, and the outstanding amount of collectibles located throughout each level. In the demo I tried I saw the potential for a return to this sort of gameplay. Tossing eggs at objects before they even pop on the screen, closely managing the number of yarn-eggs needed to get through each level, and snagging each collectible without wasting inertia from movement are all techniques that can be practiced and mastered Yoshi's Woolly World. The level design may not have speed running in mind, but like that has ever stopped a speed runner before.
The final thing I think is probably worth noting is that Yoshi's Woolly World maintains both Nintendo's expectations of quality and polish. Visually everything in-game looks very well put together and cohesive, beyond perhaps some things not being made of yarn (maybe beta stand-in assets?). Gameplay is similarly polished, with button presses being very responsive and on-screen actions being very clear. that is to say, when you make mistakes or do something well, it's apparent why due to, well, just overall great design.
Yoshi's Woolly World is what it is. It's cute, simple fun with basic platforming an a ton of personally. An oh man, is it ridiculously cute, to the point of melting my face every time one of Yoshi's yarn egg bursts into thread. And oh man, is the platforming basic, to the point where every time I made a mistaken button press and fell into a hole I rolled my eyes over having to redo that stretch of the level. In my opinion, the cuteness makes it well worth it.