Living the Dream – NES – Kirby’s Adventure – 1993

Kirby's Adventure (U) (PRG1) [!]_001

Kirby’s Adventure
Nintendo Entertainment System
HAL Laboratory
© 1993
Genre: Platformer

Since I have become friends with @3pstart, I began to do something I never really did before: pay closer attention to who is actually making a game.  Yes, I am ashamed to admit it, though admit it I must: for someone who enjoys gaming as much as I do, I didn’t really pay the companies who make them much attention.  There are exceptions of course (all those years of arcade fighting games from Capcom in particular), but I hadn’t even really given it any thought.  Imagine my surprise as I was looking up information for Adventures of Lolo and found that they were the same company that had created the Kirby franchise!  This week, at the request of one of our readers (thanks ParticleBit!), I present you with Kirby’s Adventure.

Kirby's Adventure (U) (PRG1) [!]_002

Such a cozy, and dare I say… toasty adventure! …I’ll see myself out.

I had originally been under the impression that Kirby’s Dreamland for the Gameboy and Kirby’s Adventure were one and the same game.  While enjoyable, Kirby’s Dreamland was short and simple – with five stages, I think I beat it in under an hour, without trying to speed run or anything of the sort.  The consensus of many gamer’s who knew about both also seems to be “Well, I did love Kirby’s Dreamland, but I never played the NES version.”  The second game in the saga of our lovable pink hero actually has quite a bit going for it over the original game.

After waking up from a post-lunch nap, Kirby realizes that he didn’t dream, and goes to the fountain of dreams to investigate.  Upon arrival, he discovers that the nefarious King Dedede has stolen the Star Rod, and split it into seven parts – keeping one part for himself, and he charitably gives the other six to each of the games other bosses.  There is a strange twist towards the end, but I will leave that to you to discover, intrepid gamers.

Kirby's Adventure (U) (PRG1) [!]_008

Again: not the most memorable of enemies. That little elf sprite right there is also used as a mini boss, just slightly larger.

For the looks of this game, the programmers seemed able to squeeze every ounce of graphics imaginable from the NES.  By 1993, most people were focusing on their SNES, or their Genesis.  Graphically, the game could compare to either one of them – with bright and friendly colors that almost seemed to be pastels, Kirby happily drifted about, sucking up enemies and floating through the air.  It’s hard to imagine it came out for the system that it did, but it goes to show how good companies were starting to get when it came to the graphics and animation.

The animation was smooth: everything flowed nicely, and I didn’t notice any clumsiness or jerkiness.  While enemies (outside of bosses) didn’t tend to be memorable, they were at least varied, and fit in well to the overall theme.  Bosses were strange takes on cutesy, but adorable nonetheless.  Notably, other than King Dedede, the game introduces an infamous and popular character from the franchise, Metaknight.  None of the enemies were terribly deadly, which makes the game a very relaxing challenge overall.

Kirby has a few different tricks up his sleeve: he can inhale the area in front of him to start eating an enemy.  Pressing down will eat the enemy, and if they have any powers, absorb them.   Inhaling enemies is then replaced with that ability (such as Tornado, Blade or Fireball to name a few – there are over 20).  He can also spit enemies out in a straight line as a projectile.  In addition, Kirby can just suck up the air in order to start flying around, and can puff out the air a short distance in front of him.

Kirby's Adventure (U) (PRG1) [!]_012

Until I wrote this article, I always thought Kirby was about the fictional world written by an obese child stuck at a weight loss camp. Who knew!

To call the gameplay relaxing is a nice way of saying that it’s easy.  It’s simple, but at the same time, it’s enjoyable.  The length of the game (seven stages with a plethora of levels within each) makes the game a bit long, and will save it for you after each level.

Musically, this game is bright and peppy – everything about Kirby’s Adventure tends to be.  It’s pleasant and upbeat, and I couldn’t find any complaints.  If memory serves, even included my favorite song from the first game later on, which was a fun easter egg to run across.

While it is accessible for the casual gamer, there is one thing that gives the game some good replayability: there are many secrets to be found throughout the levels, different bonus stages and hidden doors, along with a fun and obnoxious glitch in one of the earlier stages using a hard-to-acquire ability.  It’s also easy enough that it seems to be accessible as a game to start practicing speed running in.  I have watched a couple of them, and it makes for a good time.

Kirby's Adventure (U) (PRG1) [!]_013

Other than the original NES, this game was re-released on the Game Boy Advance, Wii, Wii-U and 3DS.  The Kirby series has a lot of different titles, all of them plastered across the different Nintendo systems.  While I don’t know many people who owned the original cartridge for Kirby’s Adventure, this game is a real gem.  It’s easily accessible online, and I can’t think of much else to say about it: it’s a fun game.  Check it out.

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3 thoughts on “Living the Dream – NES – Kirby’s Adventure – 1993

  1. Considering that it’s such a staple of the franchise, I was surprised to learn that Kirby’s copy ability wasn’t introduced in the series’ first installment, Kirby’s Dream Land. Kirby’s Adventure was such a leap forward, it makes the original look like a mini-game by comparison. It’s definitely recommended for anyone interested in NES games.

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  2. Pingback: A Fiendishly Good Time – Game Boy Color – Revelations: The Demon Slayer – 1999 | 3PStart

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