7 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash Review


It’s time to look at one of the new Christmas games! I’ve always been a really huge fan of Mario Power Tennis for Gamecube and in many ways it was incredibly ahead of its time. The gameplay was exceptional and there was a good array of characters to choose from. There were many modes and the replay value was off the charts. Since then the series has struggled and unfortunately Ultra Tennis does nothing to escape from this. It ends up being a vastly inferior version of Power Tennis.

Right from the start you will realize that something is off as there is no Tournament Mode. You really only have 3 options here. Vs battles with the CPU, Mega Rally, and Online battles. There are some nuances here like Simple Tennis, Standard Tennis, Mega, etc. These are just different versions of the battles though. Gone are the minigames and such. You’ll just be playing a lot of Tennis so get ready.

This game really tries to get you to play around with the new Mega options. So much so in fact that this is the default Tennis game and is used in the survival mode rumble. Get ready for this to extend every match as it is hard to lose when you are big. The only real way to stop the computers is to also turn huge and at that point it’s just a lot of back and forth. I can tell you now that I am not a fan of this mechanic. It’s a very forced gimmick. I don’t mind having it as an option, but certainly not as the default. You just can’t get around it for most of the game.

The actual gameplay aside from that is unfortunately a step down from the last game as well. You now have a bunch of different shots that you can use based on the color of the circle next to the ball. I guess this is a way to let newer players know when the proper time is to use each one. The main problem with this is that it makes the game easier and makes those shots more effective. You’re now letting the game tell you what to do. Power Tennis had it perfect so why change the setup? Nintendo really went overboard with all of the extra gimmicks during this era. I would say that the new Mario Tennis for Switch could fix it, but I played a bit of that one and it seems like a step below Ultra so that’s worrisome.

Again, if you want to have fun you should go to the Simple Tennis mode. That one plays the most similar to Power Tennis and is just a far more rewarding experience. The matches are quicker without the turning huge part and it just feels a lot more natural. Still, if you like the new additions then you’ll be able to experience that everywhere else. Not for very long though as the game is quite short.

So I mentioned that there is no tournament mode so why are you playing anyway? Well, there are 25 achievements in the game. All of them are meant to grind the experience even further. You have to beat 15 opponents in a row with a bunch of different characters to get their Star form. You also have to play 10 games of each mode, get to 100 in the Rally mode, and make it to round 40 in survival. They’re mostly fairly easy or at least achievable with time, but you can tell that they just take a really long time to do. That’s easily well over 100 games if you want to do them all. Fortunately you can buy the achievements with money that you earn from the matches. It still takes a long time and I lost count of how many matches I completed, but buying them all is definitely the best way to go about it. I finished the game with 3 hours and 39 minutes of play time so it is considerably short. That is 100% of the single player content done. At that point all there is to do is online and local multiplayer. A good multiplayer game can last with just that, but this isn’t exactly Super Smash and there is virtually no reason to play it if you still have Power Tennis. As a result, I have to give this game the thumbs down there.

Still, to give it a bad score just because it isn’t as good as a previous installment just isn’t enough of a justification for me. If Power Tennis did not exist then this game would probably be more fun. I’ll acknowledge that the game could and should have been a lot better, but at its core it is a reasonable tennis game. The gameplay is still fairly entertaining and you’ll be able to play it for a few hours at least. The price isn’t that bad nowadays either. I recommend playing the Mega Ball rally a bit just because it’s at least a slightly different way to play here. It’s the only minigame that survived but what wrecks this one as well is the fact that you can lose if you beat your opponent. You have to keep the ball going back and forth so if you or the CPU loses then it’s all over.

Then there are the graphics which are quite good. The game still does look very modern. The colors are vibrant and the character designs are on point. That’s certainly what I like to see in a big Nintendo game. I’ll also give the soundtrack a thumbs up even if it isn’t the most original one out there. It sounds nice while you’re playing and that’s the important part. Even if the replay value isn’t high, the technicals are on point. It’ll be a fun game for a while even if the time is limited.

Overall, Mario Ultra Tennis is not the game changer that you would hope it could be, but it’s not a bad title. I do think the developers spent a reasonable amount of time with it. They just tried to be too inventive with the controls. It’s a Tennis game, they really don’t need to be doing anything too fancy with it. Just nail the fundamentals and the rest would come into place just fine. If you haven’t played the other Tennis games then this is a reasonable pick. If you still have a Gamecube/Wii though then I would recommend picking up Power Tennis instead. Trust me, I’ve put in over 100 hours on that game and it is legendary. You would not be disappointed in the slightest.

Overall 7/10

Game Records

Paper Mario Color Splash Stats and Records

Play Time 24h 37m
3/6 Luigis
Paint 380
Roshambo Temples completed 1/8

Stage Stats

Port Prisma 99%
Ruddy Road 100%
Cherry Lake 69%
Indigo Underground 65%
Bloo Bay Beach 89%
Daffodil Peak 98%
Crimson Tower 57%
Sunglow Ridge 76%
Chateau Chanterelle 66%
Mondo Woods 79%
Marmalade Valley 33%
Kiwano Temple 33%
Golden Coliseum 15%
Dark Bloo Inn 30%
Sacred Forest 75%
Cobalt Base 0%
Fort Cobalt 32%
Violet Passage 75%
Vortex Island 30%
Lighthouse Island 37%
Fortune Island 26%
Mustard Cafe 55%
Toad Trainworks 33%
Tangerino Grill 16%
Sunset Express 44%
Redpepper Volcano 86%
Redpepper Crater 61%
Green Energy Plant 0%
Mossrock Theater 68%
Emerald Circus 100%

8 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

Freedom Planet Review


It’s time to look at a fairly recent side scrolling game that I was able to nab for free on the Wii U thanks to the MyNintendo Rewards. I can’t say that I had ever heard of the game prior to getting it, but it’s considerably better than I expected. It’s not that I expected it not to be good, but I wasn’t prepared for the game to have such a satisfying plot with so many cutscenes. The voice acting also helped it excel to the next level. It’s a very complete game that has a solid amount of difficulty while always remaining fair and balanced.

The game starts off by assuming that you are familiar with the characters and the setting. That’s always a good approach and even though it would be impossible since this is the first game in the series, it shows that the writers already have a pretty good idea on the background behind the characters. I’m sure we’ll be learning quite a lot about them in the sequels. For now, what you need to know is that Lilac is the main character. She’s a powerful dragon who has the ability of super speed at her disposal. In an instant she can cross large distances like Sonic. When an alien crash lands on the planet and warns her that an alien invasion is coming Lilac prepares to help. The problem is that both kingdoms on her planet refuse to co-operate and her friends aren’t strong enough to help her. It’s time for Lilac to save the world!

The gameplay is your classic 2D side scroller. You run and jump as Lilac as you attempt to get through the level. These stages aren’t always linear though as you may have to go back and forth to find card keys or find where the true path is. Most games of this style put in a lot of pit falls to trip you up and that’s actually the main area where the 2D Sonic games tend to falter. This one makes no such mistakes and the only level where you even can fall is the final one. The rest are fine so you can just focus on speed blasting through it. As far as attacks go you can trow out a slicing attack, skyward uppercut, ground dive, and even a super charge. The charge gives you invincibility against almost any kind of attack and is really handy against bosses.

However, the best attack in the game is certainly your helicopter move. Just double tap the jump button to activate it and deal heavy damage. The move does have a lot of end lag though so against the final boss use it with caution. The bosses are all quite diverse with a lot of different attack patterns to memorize. The game doesn’t bother with recycled animations or levels the way that some games do. This one has a lot of heart and you can tell that the developers did everything they could with what they had on hand. The gameplay is just a blast and it’s easily one of the best 2D games I’ve played in a long time. In terms of sheer gameplay it even dominates popular franchises like Sonic, Kirby, and Yoshi. Mario’s still the best in the genre, but I dare say that this has a solid shot to be 2nd. Of course, it’s a little soon to be saying that after one game so we’ll see how the sequel holds up. Hopefully it is ported over to the MyNintendoRewards shop soon.

The graphics are very solid as well. The character designs are on point and the sprites are very polished. It’s the kind of game that is easy to look at and everything is clear so you always know where the obstacles are. The enemy designs are also a lot of fun. Even when there are a bunch of enemies on screen the game rarely lags which is quite impressive as well. We can’t forget about the soundtrack and that holds up just as nicely. The themes are all very fast paced and really get you into the heat of the moment. On a technical level this game doesn’t falter.

Then we get to the length of the game which is reasonable. It’ll take you around 4 hours to complete the game. Of those 4 hours around 1 hour will be comprised of cutscenes. As I mentioned earlier the story is quite extensive to be honest. Some levels have huge breaks in between them with the multiple cutscenes and they do a good job of getting you invested in the characters. There’a good amount of replay value here as you can play as Lilac’s two friends who have unique levels and a different story perspective. Maybe it would help you like them as much as Lilac although that seems doubtful. You can also try to collect all of the badges and cards which would likely take quite a long time to do.

Time to quickly talk about the characters. Lilac is a selfless hero who is always charging into danger. She feels that by jumping into the fray like this her friends won’t have to, but they aren’t happy about this since they have to bail her out. I agree with Lilac’s logic here even if the friends aren’t really on board. Every time they try to help they get taken hostage or something so Lilac taking point makes sense. Her dragon abilities also make her considerably powerful. She’s definitely the best character in the game.

Then we’ve got her best friend Carol. Carol is more about having fun than saving the world, but she’ll tag along with the lead to keep her out of trouble. Carol’s a decent character, but she does crack midway and basically ends up proving Lilac’s point about why she shouldn’t be involved in this. Carol can fight reasonably well though and makes for a good assist when she has finally calmed down. The only member of the trio that I didn’t care for was Milla. Milla is more of a kid than the others and gets rather scared by what is happening. The game may have plans for her, but she doesn’t have as much potential as the other two.

Torque is the alien who crash landed in the first place and I can’t say that I’m a fan of him either. The guy is constantly yelling at the natives to work together, but his planet was the first to lose so he can barely talk. He always seems prepared to destroy anything to stop the villains as well so I can’t really call him a hero. Add that to the fact that he isn’t useful in a fight and the guy is basically just around to slow everyone down.

Spade doesn’t get to do much here, but considering that he is the big rival I’m sure he will do more in a sequel. He seems to have a history with Lilac and his speed is on her level. I look forward to seeing him appear again soon and he is probably the only character who could possibly surpass Lilac. Finally we have Brevon who is the main villain. He’s certainly a brutal antagonist as he rips his opponents to shreds. I even feel bad for the prince that he mind controlled since the heroes never actually find this out so they end up beating him up and possibly destroying the prince since they thought he was just another villain. Brevon is certainly thorough when he conquers planets and is a very legitimate threat. He made for a great final boss, but getting on Lilac’s bad side was probably a big mistake here. There are other characters like the two governments but they weren’t quite as noteworthy. The body guard who was always talking back to Lilac seemed cool though. She would have made for a solid boss fight.

For one last point on the gameplay, I also liked the game’s continue system. Some games force you to restart the whole level when you get a game over, this one just sends you back to the check point. That’s definitely a good thing if you ask me since some levels are over 25 minutes long and doing the whole thing over again would have been quite the chore. Likewise if you die to a boss’ 3rd phase when you come back that’s the phase that you will start with. It helps make the difficulty a fun challenge as opposed to a tedious chore. With no huge punishment for losing you are able to experiment more.

Overall, Freedom Planet is definitely a really fun game. The plot is a lot of fun and I’m still impressed that there was full voice acting. Admittedly the sound did fluctuate quite a lot though so sometimes it was rather difficult to make out what was being said, but fortunately there are subtitles. Learning how to beat a boss through repetition is fun here and the game rewards defensive play in the meanwhile. If you rush in without a plan you aren’t very likely to succeed. Slow and steady wins the race. If you haven’t played this game yet then I highly recommend doing so. You will never look at the genre the same way again.

Overall 8/10

7 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

Super Mario Kart Review


At time for a new title courtesy of MyNintendoRewards! Super Mario Kart is one of those games that is so iconic you are almost afraid to play it. After all, the game was a living legend for a while but since then we have gotten many more Mario Kart games, all of which have improved on this one’s formula. Still, it’s a game that needed to be played and I’ll bet you dollars to donuts that you will still enjoy it. The game holds up mighty well and is a good game to add to your virtual collection.
There is no plot of course and there are really two main modes for single player. They are the Grand Prix and time Trial. For multiplayer you also have races and then even battle levels which is cool. There is a reasonable amount of content her all things considered and local multiplayer always ensures that the game will retain a considerable amount of replay value.

For the grand prixs there are 4. The cups have become iconic at this point as you always see the Mushroom, Flower, Star, and Special cups kick in. While most of the newer games limit the cups to 4 races each this one goes with 5. That’s likely because each individual stage is quite short here. For that reason all races are 5 laps each as opposed to 3. A lot of the levels will seem familiar to you if you’ve played the newer Mario Kart games since they usually pay homage to them by including the levels in the games. This one definitely thought of a considerable amount of creative levels. In particular I liked the Boo stages as well as the Bowser ones. Those are definitely very atmospheric while racing.
Naturally this wouldn’t be a Mario game without having a dynamic soundtrack as well right? The level themes are all quite solid and have held up pretty well over the years. No expense was spared here. Then the graphics are also pretty bright and nice for its time. They’ve also aged well and it’s never hard to see where you’re going. At most pipes may appear to be farther than they actually are but that’s why you can’t trust the rear view mirror.

I would have to say that this is probably the most difficult Mario Kart game that I’ve played as well. Mainly this is due to the controls which are naturally a little rougher than in the newer games. I couldn’t quite understand the drifting feature all too well as my car would go too fast. Ultimately when I had to turn I would either slam on the brakes or let go of the acceleration button. There are workarounds like that but of course you will lose speed so be careful. Since you need to win the first 3 cups to unlock the last one failure is not an option! Harness the access points that the Wii U gives you and you’ll be fine.

Aside from the Grand Prixs you will probably spend most of your time in multiplayer mode just enjoying a bunch of racing games. You’ll likely want to move on to the newer ones at some point, but it’s also nice to just experience the game in its original form. There is also Time Trial mode, but there isn’t a whole lot to do there. I suppose if you really enjoy the levels a lot then that is a good way to play them and also to hone your skills.

Naturally there isn’t a whole lot of other things to say about the game. It’s a really good way to spend 4-5 dollars though. You really can’t go wrong with that price and while the MyNintendo Rewards can certainly be a little larger, they have gotten better than where they were. Since obtaining points is rather easy thanks to their apps, you are basically guaranteed a 50% off deal on any game from the list that you want. When you see a good game on the site just be prepared to snag it!

Overall, Super Mario Kart isn’t just a game, it’s a racing game! It’s a title that really changed the genre as we know it and is still regarded as one of the all time greats. While I tend to really enjoy racing games like F-Zero which have no items so it’s just you and your boost, these can be a lot of fun as well. Double Dash will always be the best Mario Kart but this one certainly keeps up the quality that you would expect from such a storied franchise. If you haven’t downloaded it yet then I recommend doing so.

Overall 7/10

Game Records

NES Remix Pack Stats and Records

Stats time!

Play Time 12h 44m

Remix 1

Stars 429/591
B Points 37949
Stamps 78/100

Remix 2

Stars 359/477
B Points 39181
Stamps 83/100

Game Stats

Remix 1:

“Remix 1” 58/75 Stars
Stage 1 2/3
Stage 2 2/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 2/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 1/3
Stage 8 2/3
Stage 9 2/3
Stage 10 3/3
Stage 11 2/3
Stage 12 3/3
Stage 13 3/3
Stage 14 2/3
Stage 15 2/3
Stage 16 1/3
Stage 17 2/3
Stage 18 3/3
Stage 19 3/3
Stage 20 3/3
Stage 21 3/3
Stage 22 2/3
Stage 23 3/3
Stage 24 2/3
Stage 25 1/3

Remix 2 49/75 Stars
Stage 1 1/2
Stage 2 2/3
Stage 3 1/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 1/3
Stage 8 2/3
Stage 9 2/3
Stage 10 3/3
Stage 11 3/3
Stage 12 2/3
Stage 13 1/3
Stage 14 2/3
Stage 15 3/3
Stage 16 –
Stage 17 1/3
Stage 18 3/3
Stage 19 1/3
Stage 20 3/3
Stage 21 2/3
Stage 22 1/3
Stage 23 3/3
Stage 24 2/3
Stage 25 1/3

Bonus 18/75
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 –
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 –
Stage 5 –
Stage 6 –
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 –
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 –
Stage 11 3/3
Stage 12 3/3
Stage 13 –
Stage 14-
Stage 15-
Stage 16-
Stage 17-
Stage 18-
Stage 19-
Stage 20-
Stage 21-
Stage 22-
Stage 23-
Stage 24-
Stage 25 –

Donkey Kong 20/21
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 2/3

Donkey Kong Jr 17/21
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 1/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 2/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 2/3

Mario Bros 22/30
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 1/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 1/3
Stage 8 1/3
Stage 9 1/3
Stage 10 3/3

Pinball 18/18
Perfect

Golf 7/21
Stage 1 1/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 –
Stage 5 –
Stage 6 –
Stage 7 –

Clu Clu Land 20/24
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 1/3
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 1/3

Excitebike 22/30
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 1/3
Stage 4 1/3
Stage 5 2/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 3/3
Stage 9 –
Stage 10 3/3

Balloon Fight 37/39
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 3/3
Stage 9 2/3
Stage 10 3/3
Stage 11 3/3
Stage 12 3/3
Stage 13 2/3

Ice Climbers 27/30
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 2/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 1/3
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 3/3

Wrecking Crew 27/33
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 1/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 3/3
Stage 9 1/3
Stage 10 2/3
Stage 11 2/3

Super Mario Bros 52/69
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 1/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 1/3
Stage 7 2/3
Stage 8 3/3
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 2/3
Stage 11 1/3
Stage 12 1/3
Stage 13 3/3
Stage 14 3/3
Stage 15 2/3
Stage 16 3/3
Stage 17 2/3
Stage 18 3/3
Stage 19 1/3
Stage 20 1/3
Stage 21 2/3
Stage 22 3/3
Stage 23 3/3

Legend of Zelda 35/51
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 2/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 1/3
Stage 8 3/3
Stage 9 2/3
Stage 10 2/3
Stage 11 3/3
Stage 12 2/3
Stage 13 2/3
Stage 14 3/3
Stage 15 –
Stage 16 –
Stage 17 –

Remix 2 Best Championship Score 0199980

Remix 2 Game Stats

Remix 1 49/60
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 2/3
Stage 3 2/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 2/3
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 2/3
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 1/3
Stage 11 2/3
Stage 12 2/3
Stage 13 3/3
Stage 14 3/3
Stage 15 3/3
Stage 16 3/3
Stage 17 3/3
Stage 18 –
Stage 19 3/3
Stage 20 3/3

Remix 2 46/60
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 2/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 –
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 3/3
Stage 9 2/3
Stage 10 1/3
Stage 11 3/3
Stage 12 3/3
Stage 13 2/3
Stage 14 3/3
Stage 15 3/3
Stage 16 2/3
Stage 17 –
Stage 18 3/3
Stage 19 3/3
Stage 20 1/3

Bonus 29/60
Stage 1 2/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 2/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 2/3
Stage 8 –
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 3/3
Stage 11 2/3
Stage 12 –
Stage 13 3/3
Stage 14 –
Stage 15 –
Stage 16 –
Stage 17 –
Stage 18 –
Stage 19 –
Stage 20 –

Mario Bros Lost Levels 10/21
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 1/3
Stage 3 1/3
Stage 4 1/3
Stage 5 1/3
Stage 6 2/3
Stage 7 1/3

Metroid 32/36
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 2/3
Stage 8 2/3
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 2/3
Stage 11 3/3
Stage 12 2/3

Kid Icarus 18/24
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 1/3
Stage 4 2/3
Stage 5 1/3
Stage 6 2/3
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 3/3

Adventure of Link 26/30
Stage 1 2/3
Stage 2 2/3
Stage 3 2/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 3/3
Stage 8 2/3
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 3/3

Punchout 18/21

Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 2/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 2/3
Stage 7 2/3

Mario Bros 3 42/48
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 2/3
Stage 7 2/3
Stage 8 3/3
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 1/3
Stage 11 3/3
Stage 12 3/3
Stage 13 3/3
Stage 14 3/3
Stage 15 1/3
Stage 16 3/3

Dr Mario 13/18
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 –
Stage 4 2/3
Stage 5 2/3
Stage 6 3/3

Super Mario Bros 2 32/36
Stage 1 2/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 3/3
Stage 5 3/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 2/3
Stage 8 3/3
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 3/3
Stage 11 1/3
Stage 12 3/3

Kirby’s Adventure 31/39
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 1/3
Stage 4 1/3
Stage 5 1/3
Stage 6 3/3
Stage 7 2/3
Stage 8 3/3
Stage 9 3/3
Stage 10 2/3
Stage 11 3/3
Stage 12 3/3
Stage 13 3/3

Wario’s Woods 13/24
Stage 1 3/3
Stage 2 3/3
Stage 3 3/3
Stage 4 2/3
Stage 5 2/3
Stage 6 –
Stage 7 –
Stage 8 –

Game Records

Kirby and the Rainbow Curse Stats and Records

Stats time!

Play Time 3h 32m
Game Complete 66%
3/22 Diary Pieces
8/9 Boss Figures

Level Stats

1-1 Silver
1-2 Bronze
1-3 Bronze
2-1 Bronze
2-2 Bronze
2-3 Bronze
3-1 Bronze
3-2 Silver
3-3 Bronze
4-1 Silver
4-2 Bronze
4-3 Bronze
5-1 Silver
5-2 Bronze
5-3 Bronze
6-1 Bronze
6-2 Bronze
6-3 Bronze
7-1 Bronze
7-2 Bronze
7-3 Bronze

6 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

Kirby and the Rainbow Curse Review


It’s time to look at one of the latest Kirby games. It has been quite a few years since it came out by this point, but it feels fairly recent to me. This Kirby game took the unique approach of acting like a DS game. The Wii U does have a stylus after all, but it’s easy to forget since most games wisely stayed as far away from this mechanic as possible. Unfortunately Nintendo didn’t learn this lesson quite as readily which meant game over for them. I’m afraid that this is easily the weakest Kirby game that I have played and it just fails to capture the charm and essence of the series. Kirby himself does look fairly good though.

The game starts off with Kirby relaxing and just trying to have a good day when a villain appears and blasts the entire planet with an energy attack. Even Kirby couldn’t react quickly enough to dodge and at once time stopped for everyone. Fortunately a fairy freed Kirby and our protagonist returned the favor in the next scene. The two heroes decide to team up to save the planet and that begins our adventure. Enjoy the opening cutscene since we don’t get another one until the very end of the game. Was this game fairly low budget? I would say absolutely!

Aside from the lack of cutscenes (Because Nintendo isn’t exactly known for them anyway) this game takes a lot of shortcuts. The most obvious one is the reused bosses. There are 7 worlds which each have 3 levels and then a boss fight. Worlds 1,2, and 3 have the same bosses as 4,5, and 6. It’s not something that you would expect from a AAA Nintendo game, but maybe this one was only AA. What supports this theory is the game is only 3 hours and 32 minutes long. That’s considering that I left the game on while grabbing lunch and I would pause it whenever I had to leave the room as well. It’s just a very short game and you could probably decipher that yourself. Each level is around 5-6 minutes tops with some being shorter. It’s a fairly easy game so not dying will also speed things up.

A game being short isn’t really a bad thing, but if I had bought the game at its original retail price then I certainly would have been a little disappointed. Maybe Nintendo has just thrown in the towel though. Star Fox Zero was also incredibly short and likewise for Star Allies. I guess unless you are Mario or Link you can’t expect too much. Still, it would probably still get the usual 7 stars as with most Nintendo games, but what really hurts this one is the gameplay.

You can’t actually move at all. To control Kirby you have to draw a path for him with controls that bring you back to the Wii days. Kirby will refuse to get on your path unless it is perfectly straight and even then he has a tendency to lose his balance and momentum. He has a few different forms like a Tank and a Rocket, but those all use the same controls. I didn’t buy a Kirby game to draw, I bought it to cheese the levels by floating over all of them. That isn’t an option in this game and I have to question the rationale behind this. It just doesn’t seem like a good gameplay idea if you ask me. It gets old after a level or 2. Then you’ve also got the fact that a lot of the levels are auto moving levels which hurts a bit since you have to wait at their pace. Some of those levels I could play with one hand for a bit or do some stretching while I was waiting.

I did die a handful of times during boss fights thanks to the controls though. It never feels earned though and just cheesy. I would proudly blame the gameplay style for each of my deaths. Even though we got the solid cosmic battle at the end as in most Kirby games I couldn’t enjoy it as much because the design of the fight was no good. You have to rely on a lot of RnG to take him down for the count. All right, I think that’s enough about the gameplay so lets go into some of the more positive aspects of the game.

There is a reasonable amount of replay value here to make up for the short length. You can play Challenge Mode which gives you a reason to replay most of the stages. There are also treasure chests in each level which allow you to get the collectibles. There are a bunch of figures and music themes to grab as well as Diary pages which will tell you a bonus story. Grabbing all of the collectibles will take you a reasonable amount of time without making the mistake of being a big grind. All in all, if you decide to 100% the game then it will have awarded you enough content to justify the purchase.

The soundtrack in the game is also pretty good. It doesn’t have any themes as iconic as Battle Against Nightmare, but was still as good as a Nintendo title should be. The final boss theme is solid and the normal level themes are engaging. The graphics are also nice and bright as they should be. They are certainly a step down from some of the previous Kirby games thanks to the dicey decision to make Kirby a ball the whole time and the stop motion esque effects for most of the cutscenes, but beyond that you can tell that it’s a modern title.

I also have to give some kudos to Kirby himself and his role in the story. He looks pretty brave and strong throughout the opening as he dodges a laser blast and saves the fairy. You can also feel the emotion behind his character as he glares at the final boss. Kirby is definitely a fun lead and while some games can play up his childlike nature too much, this one didn’t. He took all the plot twists in stride. Kirby is all business in the climax. I didn’t care about the fairy plot much, but it’s not like it got almost any screen time to be honest so she was just around to jump start the plot. I didn’t even realize that there was something in the plot for a twist until it happened, but I guess it was good so that we could get a true final boss.

Overall, Kirby and the Rainbow Curse is a fun game in every area except the gameplay. Unfortunately the gameplay is tedious and repetitious. It completely gets in the way of what the Kirby games are usually about and I do have to take a star away. One thing that I love about the Kirby games is just flying to the top of the screen and getting to the end of the level. You can’t do that here since the game controls where you go and your paintbrush runs out very quickly. It’s unfortunate, but if you don’t mind the idea of drawing or even like the concept for a Kirby game then this is the one to check out. Regardless it isn’t a bad game, but I would sooner recommend grabbing the rest of them.

Overall 6/10