PN Review: Kirby Triple Deluxe
It seems like we’ve been getting a lot of new Kirby games lately and you won’t hear me complaining. I’ve always really enjoyed the Kirby series especially the more recent games: Kirby’s Epic Yarn and Kirby’s Return to Dreamland. Now, the 3DS has a Kirby game that stands tall amongst its console counterparts and could be one of the best platformers on the 3DS if not one of the best games on the system to date.
Kirby Triple Deluxe continues the excellent line of recent Kirby platformers. If you’re not familiar with the Kirby series, the gameplay is very similar to that of the 2D Mario games minus the timer. Mario games focus on precise platforming while moving through levels within a given time limit. Kirby games focus more on the exploration aspect and don’t lock the player into a certain time limit. This means the levels are usually a little longer and have several sections to them. In most of the original Kirby games, players would enter levels through various doors and there wasn’t a distinct ‘overworld’ or level selection area. In Kirby Triple Deluxe, there are very distinct worlds and levels within those worlds. It’s very similar to the approach of most of the 2D Mario games since Super Mario Bros. 3. Each world has about 5 levels with an extra one unlocked once players have collected all of the Sun Stones in each level. There is also a boss level in each world.
The gameplay in Kirby Triple Deluxe sticks to the old Kirby formula in a lot of ways with a few notable exceptions. The big differentiator in Triple Deluxe is the stereoscopic 3D effects in both the levels and the boss battles. I know a lot of people, myself included, turn down/off the 3D in most cases. From my personal experience, I either turn off the 3D if it doesn’t add anything to the gameplay or if there’s just too much going on visually. One of the best examples of the 3D adding to the gameplay is in Super Mario 3D Land. I really felt like the 3D helped tremendously and I missed the stereoscopic 3D once I picked up Super Mario 3D World. Kirby Triple Deluxe may just have the best implementation of 3D on the 3DS. Each level uses the 3D in new and different ways. One area that was underwater featured enemies that swam in a circle that went from the middle of the 3D layer to the front, and then to the back. It really made attacking/swallowing enemies more dynamic. Another example has boulders that roll at Kirby from the background to the foreground. If Kirby gets in the way, he gets smashed against the screen of the 3DS. Each level also has multiple layers/platforms that extend into the background and foreground adding new gameplay mechanics like shooting enemies that are on another layer. But by far the best use of the 3D was in the boss battles. One boss would paint large cannonballs (and other objects) on three canvases. If you had the 3D turned on, you would see that two of them were 3D and were going to roll off the canvas, while one of them was merely a 2D picture that you could dodge. There are several other instances in the game, but suffice it to say the game uses the 3D incredibly well. I highly recommend playing with the 3D on throughout the whole game. The new addition of Hypernova Kirby is also noteworthy. Kirby can use the Hypernova ability in certain levels to suck everything in sight. There’s really almost nothing he can’t suck up using this new ability.
The presentation in Kirby Triple Deluxe is also top-notch. The game’s visuals honestly look very close to Kirby’s Return to Dreamland on the Wii. It’s really amazing what they’ve been able to do visually on the 3DS. Luigi’s Mansion Dark Moon was probably one of the best looking games to date and Triple Deluxe is right up there with it. Like I mentioned earlier, the 3D effect is so stunning it warrants being turned on 100% of the time.
Kirby Triple Deluxe also features several different modes to amp up the replayability. One of the new modes is a first in the series called ‘Kirby Fighters’. Those who are familiar with the Super Smash Bros. games will instantly feel at home. It’s essentially Smash Bros. but with various Kirby’s and their copy abilities. Players can challenge their friends in local multiplayer or play CPU’s to learn each copy ability in the game. There are a lot of new copy abilities in the game I didn’t really cover that both veterans and newcomers will enjoy. My personal favorite was the Beetle ability. The Kirby Fighters game is a fun diversion and so is Dedede’s Drum Dash. It’s a rhythm game similar to Harmoknight. Players have to press buttons in time with the music to have Dedede jump and collect as many coins as possible. These modes are unlocked very early on in the game with two more modes being unlocked once players finish the game. I won’t spoil those for you but they are definitely worth playing through the game to unlock.
Kirby Triple Deluxe is my favorite Kirby game since Kirby: Canvas Curse. The plethora of new copy abilities combined with the stunning visuals and 3D effects make it one of the best games on the 3DS. The charming music will have fans humming their way through each unique level. Kirby Triple Deluxe will definitely please newcomers to the series and is a breath of fresh air for series veterans.