Monday, May 26, 2014

Things No One Cares About: Kirby Triple Deluxe

Kirby as a franchise is just something which I never was drawn into, despite numerous attempts. I played Kirby's Dreamland as a little girl and could never beat King Dedede due to my own idiocy. It didn't really endear Kirby to me and, over time, I forgot about that little puffball. I finally gave Kirby Super Star a shot a few years ago and was sort of baffled by the whole mess. I've since come back to it and do enjoy the game but not to the extent that some do. My attempts thus far to get into the franchise have resulted in a double failure. Luckily this won't turn in to a triple failure because Kirby Triple Deluxe is an awesome game.

Kirby Triple Deluxe is Kirby's first 3DS exclusive outing and the game that sold me on the franchise. My main problem with the Kirby games I had played is they lacked a sense of direction,mostly Super Star. I was going along and events were happening with what seemed like little input my part. I really didn't feel like I was accomplishing anything, so I wasn't compelled to go on. Triple Deluxe has a clear sense of flow. Where as Dreamland or Super Star just sort of throws you in, here there is a bit of context as to what I'm doing and why I'm doing it. I'm not saying that this is like the best Kirby ever or Super Star is bad,it's just Triple Deluxe is the first one that clicked.

The plot follows Kirby trying to rescue his somewhat friend King Dedede from a weird spider wizard. It's nothing special in terms of video game narratives but adds a simple charm to the game that is endearing. It does get a bit tedious near the end when we have to sit and listen to the Big Bad's plan. It's a tad bit weird that every other scene has been a nice bit of telling through action then this text bombardment comes flying in.

The game play is what you've come to expect from a normal Kirby game. Suck up enemies to gain their power and use said power to kick some butt. They've added a few new abilities such as the Archer or Bell but the star of the show is the Hyper Nova ability. Kirby will find an item in certain levels that boosts his inhaling power to insane levels. This is used to solve puzzles and suck up large items such as trees and wreaking balls There is nothing more cathartic then going through a levels destroying everything in your path.

The game favors the mechanic of going back and forth between the foreground and background to take advantage of the 3-D effects. They do use it in creative ways such as racing an enemy in the background, so you can cut him off and get his item. It's a nice little way to shake up a bit of a tired concept. The bosses of the game also take advantage of this feature and will slip between the layers for different attacks. Unfortunately they can't be hit while doing those actions but it's only annoying during one boss.

The other 3DS feature worked in is the gyro sensor which is used to aim cannons and move various objects. The cool thing is that if you sort of mess up the rotations the game lets you easily reset the tilt function to a more favorable position. This is the only part of the game that feels gimmicky, but it never gets in the way of the fun and matches your tilting fairly accurately. It is a good use of the technology, if a bit useless.

The game is fairly easy, unless you are grabbing all the collectable sun stones, which makes the game moderately difficult. However, I am not saying that this is a knock against the game. It is meant to be accessible for people new to video games. It doesn't mean that more experienced gamers won't like it, if this genre of game is your bag. The game is one that you feel good about playing it because of the fun factor. Those looking for a bit more of a challenge can find it in the game's alternate modes.

The game hosts five other games in addition to the story mode. The Arena is Kirby's version of a boss rush with the ability to choose any copy power. Dedede Tour is more of a speed run through the main game playing as King Dedede. Kirby Fighters a Super Smash Bros style fighter where you choose which ability you want to fight with and go at it. It has a local multiplayer but lacks any sort of online function, which is sort of a missed opportunity. The final mode is a short rhythm game staring Dedede again. You time your button presses to jump higher and score points. It's nothing special but still fun and probably my favorite of the alternate modes.

I only have one real gripe against the game and that is key chain collection. The game has 256 different key chains modeled after various characters and locations from past Kirby games. Every stage has a rare key chain hidden within in addiction to common key chains. The problem I have with this is that you don't know what the common key chain will be till you end the level,they are random as to what you receive and it's possible to get duplicates. They aren't required to beat the game but make getting 100% completion a grind.

Kirby Triple Deluxe is some of the most adorable fun you'll have. It's the kind of game you play after a bad day to feel better about life,and I couldn't stop smiling when I played it. It's a definite must have for fans and potential fans of Kirby.

Till Next Time:Stay Positive

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