It’s time to return to the Nintendo Switch (now the fastest selling console in the world so getting it day one has proved to be a wise purchase ha ha). So let us look into the most recent entry of Nintendo’s series about the most adorable genocidal eldritch horror in existence KIRBY!
For people new to the franchise, Kirby is an adorable pink ball with stubby arms and legs that can fly about suck up enemies then ABSORBE THEIR POWERS INTO HIMSELF AS HE CONSUMES THEM! He can use a wide array of powers from swords, yoyo’s fire, ice, paint etc. Using these powers Kirby wanders around a series of adorable levels destroying all in his path.
The gimmick of this game is the ability to use a friend heart to befriend the enemies you would normally consume at which point they are either controlled by the computer or a friend if you have one near by (as in the same room, with a controller). This means you can have up to 4 characters (one of which is Kirby) on your side at the same time to fight, well what ever just so happens to be in your way. A useful ability is then you can combine powers, such has if you have a friend with fire power, and one with sword, you can have the fire guy turn the sword one into a flaming sword, or for some reason if paint hits a rock guy it turns them into a giant painted statue (no idea why).
These abilities are then used to interact with the environment ( not just slaughter) to gain access to hidden objects and collectables, say you find something but it’s blocked by a flaming chain? why you get an element that can douse the flames and add it to a power that has sharp slashy things (not just swords).
Oh right the plot, er well… the evil nut job Hyness plans to revive the dark god Void Termina (think Lovecraft) by collecting all these dark heart things that he’s inadvertently shattered round the universe, a bunch of them in the land of pop star and in the land of dreamland. One of the few positive stars hits Kirby giving him the friendship power. After freeing Dedede and the always awesome Meta Knight from the darkness (and potentially befriending them as playable characters) A big massive space fortress lands on Popstar controlled by 3 mages (also cute) and Kirby then finds out the plot later facing off against Hyness who finishes the revival of the elder god by sacrificing himself and the mages and then fights the horror that would destroy the universe, standard Kirby stuff.
The game is full of cuteness, the little dances you do when you complete a level, the adorable Hi Kirby says and those team formations you do at select points, like when Kirby puts on a train hat and everyone just charges forward.
The main hidden objects and collectibles are the big puzzle pieces (as opposed to the small ones that can be found all over) there is one in each level that will fill a piece of the puzzle art you form from them. The big puzzle pieces fill out a space that only they fill so if you want full completion you need these. The other hidden objects are the secret switches that grant access to bonus levels and the dream places. Dream palaces allow you to befriend dream friends, such as Bandana Dee, Dedede and Meta Knight, and as updates came out, Marx and more to come (the updates are free by the way).
The game as a whole isn’t hard, yes a few bosses brought me near to death, but at no point in the main game did I truly feel challenged or in danger, only frustrations came if I missed a collectible. Once the main game is completed you get additional modes Guest Star and the Ultimate Choice. Guest Star is the game again, but now with a clock to do speed runs and you choose one of your allies to play as instead of Kirby with the Dream Heroes being chosen after your first completion of this mode.
Ultimate Choice is the games arena mode, where you face boss after boss on a difficulty of your choice, ranging from standard level and not all of them, all the way up to every single boss in the game, limited healing and every boss is a boosted up harder version with a different colour, yes this is where it gets Nintendo hard. Anyone who has played true arena modes in older Kirby games knows this feeling.
Sadly I never got the chance to play with friends and at times I got a wee bit confused as to where I was on the screen with so much going on( made worse in Guest Star if one of the people I befriended was the same character as me) but even then main game only takes a few hours to complete so it’s not long.
I do feel this one is probably more enjoyable with friends though.