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Best of it's genre

Review: Kirby’s Adventure

by February 7, 2007

Kirby was released at the end of the NES life cycle and was one of the last few gems released on the hardware before the SNES took over.

Kirby’s Adventure is a basic platformer with an unusual twist.
In most 2D platformers the way to defeat enemies is to either jump on top of or shoot them. Kirby’s unique way of dealing with enemies is to inhale that enemy and then accomplish one of two options…

1. Spit them out in a star form that becomes a projectile to destroy other enemies


2. By pressing down on the D-pad he can take on whatever powers they have

Is this the sword department?

If say, you get attacked by an enemy that attacks you with fire, you can inhale the enemy and by pressing down on the D pad Kirby gains the ability to use fire. This is advantageous in two ways. Not only do the powers help defeat other foes in that level but there are also certain objects you can interact with if you gain the correct power. In the case of the fire power, if you have that power in a level with a cannon you’ll be able to light a fuse, get into the cannon and have it send you to a bonus stage where you can grab an extra life.

The graphics are simple compared to the games of today but at the time it was one of the better looking games on the NES. The graphics are still enjoyable to look at today with Kirby’s animations stealing the show. Even though primitive to today’s standards Kirby exudes charm and adorableness throughout.

The game is a direct translation from the NES though and that means three problems that were prevalent back in the day are still there. One is that there is a bit of “tearing” on each side of the screen where it’s trying to keep up with the action on the screen, this isn’t anything to do with a mishandling of the move to the Wii, it’s just that those were the limitations back then and even though Kirby looks like a very basic game today, that wasn’t the case when it was released on the NES.

The second problem is that there are some slow down issues when there’s a lot happening on the screen, if you’re not used to the gameplay and levels it may cause you to take some damage while adjusting to it. Thankfully the slowdown happens very little in the game.

The third problem ties in with the first two problems, sometimes when a lot of action is happening on the screen you’ll see enemies and other objects flicker on and off on the screen. Just like the other problems this is because the game stressed the older hardware and since the Wii’s Virtual Console is faithful to how the games played back in the day these faults carried over.

I call them faults, but that is a rather hefty word and really the only way they’ll bother anyone is if they’re completely new to the game. For anyone who’s played the game on it’s original hardware these faults are are easy to overlook and seem more like another piece of nostalgia connected to the game.

Kirby exudes charm and adorableness.

The sounds are exactly what you expect from a NES game, nothing flashy but fitting the game’s era perfectly. Most of the sounds surround Kirby himself and do a fine job of giving him even more of his personality.

The music in the game fits each stage very well, they’re all catchy tunes that you won’t mind having in the background while you play each level. There’s a reason these tunes have been tweaked and recycled through the history of the franchise.

Walking’s for chumps

This is a very easy game to pick up and play, while Kirby’s abilities are new to this genre the platform elements are not. Add in the fact that Kirby is able to suck in air and float over objects and enemies. That means many obstacles most platformers have are negated because of it. While you can fly over large chunks of the map the game throws more flying enemies at you than it would in the standard platfomer to force you to use Kirby’s little legs to get you some places.

There are a few mini games that will help you gain points and extra lives as you go along in the game. Games like egg eating, quick draw at high noon and a take on a grabber machine for prizes help add a slightly different dimension to the game.


  • Easy to pick up and play
  • Gameplay is very forgiving
  • Kirby and the world around him is very lighthearted


  • Anyone who is bothered by flashes on the screen might want to look at some clips before they buy, especially during the last boss fight the strobe effect is used a lot and bothers some people.


Kirby is one of my favorite characters of all time and this is where he got his start. I never owned an NES so the second this was available on the Virtual Console it was mine. It’s an example of classic 2D platformnig that holds up remarkably well in this day and age. I can easily recommend this to anyone who wants to see where Kirby got his start or just wants to experience a quality platformer from back in the 8 bit days.

This review was based on the Wii version that was provided by the reviewer.

Release Date

Feb 7, 2007

Digital or Retail





HAL Laboratory



AwardsBest of it's genreConsistently good games from developer

Quality platforming, likeable characters, interesting gameplay


screen tearing, flickering

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Jason Moquin
Oh this is where I get to say something about myself like I was captain of the debate team or that I was once king of Prussia. Well games, let's throw games in there, and I like sports, and comics, and animated things, mostly Japanese giant robots, oh and pasta, big fan of pasta. You know all shapes taste different? Each one has a distinctive bite and holds the sauce differently. A lot of people are like "PASTA IS PASTA" and I say "STOP YELLING AT ME".

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