Review of Kirby Star Allies

kirbystarallies

The only person more gluttonous than myself is Kirby. Nintendo’s pink puffball devours enemies akin to me scarfing down Easter Eggs. The only difference is that Kirby’s overeating is beneficial, as it allows him to mimic the powers of the foe he consumed. I on the other hand only suffer a trip to the loo, whenever chocolate overindulgence takes its toll. Sitting on the can, with indigestion, isn’t so bad though. Thanks to handhelds I can still game whilst in the restroom. Years ago I would play Kirby’s Dreamland on the Gameboy. Nowadays I repeat the stomachache ritual with Kirby Star Allies on the Nintendo Switch.

OVERVIEW

Kirby Star Allies begins with a hooded figure performing an occult ceremony, which causes dark hearts to rain down from the sky. Anyone who comes into contact with these black organs becomes evil… or eviler as is the case when King Dedede and Meta Knight get corrupted by their influence. Kirby, the adorable protector of Pop Star, sets off to free his rivals from the shackles of dark heart possession. Hampering his progress are three generals (Francisca, Flamberge, and Zan Partizanne) who command elemental magic. This wicked trio are stockpiling the hearts, with the aims of using them to resurrect their dark lord.

If you seek respite from hardcore games, which revel in violence and difficulty, Kirby Star Allies is a good choice. The cute graphics and cheerful soundtrack are the antithesis of something like Dark Souls. Its casual gameplay differentiates it from other platformers, such as Super Meat Boy, which punish those who lack superhuman reflexes. Even an inept player such as myself was able to best Star Allies within six hours. I attribute my success to Kirby’s floatation gifts that allow him to soar over pitfalls. By hurling hearts at an opponent, Kirby can also convert adversaries into loyal bodyguards. This significantly lowers the challenge, as your companions can do much of the work when it comes to combat.

VERDICT

My rating for Kirby Star Allies is a three and a half out of five. Although it is far from Kirby’s greatest adventure it is still a lot of fun to play. What most people will criticise Star Allies for is its longevity. Kirby games are known for being short, but even so it is disappointing that developer HAL Laboratory didn’t use the Switch’s beefier hardware to include some more content. Aside from the story mode you can tackle a couple of mini-games. Once the end credits roll a boss rush mode is unlocked. You’ll also get the option of playing through the story again with different characters.

I suspect the game would have been more enjoyable for me had I opted to play co-op with friends, rather than depend on AI partners. Alas, it is awkward to invite friends over for a multiplayer session when I am playing Kirby in the bathroom (curse that painful belly and those delicious Easter treats.) What I liked best about Kirby Star Allies is copying powers to defeat enemies and solve puzzles. There are close to thirty powers on offer and some of them can be combined. Kirby can pretend to be Link with the sword skill, masquerade as Ness with the ESP ability or role-play a woman courtesy of the cook and cleaning powers. I kid! I kid! Please don’t flame me too hard in the comments section 🙂

28 thoughts on “Review of Kirby Star Allies

    • I think the game costs fifty quid on the e-shop. Crazy expensive given the length of the story. I don’t mind shorter games though, as I don’t have much free time. The game is geared mostly for families as it is wholesome, offers co-op and kids won’t mind replaying it over and over. I would say wait for a sale, although Nintendo products don’t tend to depreciate in value.

      • This is true. Nintendo games are evergreen unless they don’t make bank which is rare (Other M). I guess the MSRP doesn’t give me sticker shock only because all of the Kirby games are geared to be small child difficulty (5-10 year old kids) But enjoyable romps for everyone.

  1. Ah, I remember the days when I had to read the labels of the cleaning products while in the bathroom. Phones and portable gaming systems make life too easy sometimes 😉

    • Hehe. I can’t say that I ever resorted to reading bathroom product labels, but back in the day I would skim through magazines whilst doing my business. Those days are long gone now thanks to mobile devices.

  2. That is something I didn’t notice during my playthrough but now that you mention the length it is quite short in regards to other Kirby games. I don’t know if I would say that is a negative towards it but I will agree it is a let down since they could’ve taken advantage of the Switch hardware and its capabilities more so for a longer game. Kirby is still charming no matter what though, but realizing it is still a triple A franchise makes some of the flaws more apparent if they show up. Especially after a series of recent successes.

    • None of the Kirby games are that long, so I knew what I was getting myself into. Back in the day I completed the Gameboy releases and NES game in one sitting for example. Still, I was expecting a bit more given the size that a Switch cart can accommodate and the hefty asking price.

  3. I’ve enjoyed it so far, but the real bummer is that in multi-player only one player can be Kirby. My daughter likes some of the ‘allies’ we can recruit, but remembers being able to play as different colored Kirby characters in Epic Yarn and Return to Dreamland. So unless we can get an ally that she likes – such as the water dinosaur thing, she just complains about not playing as Kirby =P I’m loving that yo-yo power though!

  4. It’s a shame about the price in comaprison to the length, as it looks great fun. I remember first playing Kirby on a Gameboy with Kirby’s Dreamland, and I thought that was great.

    • I remember the original Kirby (he couldn’t copy powers back then) got bashed by some magazines due to its length too. When I was a kid I didn’t mind though, as I would gladly replay the same stuff over and over. It also had a hard mode you could unlock with a code.

  5. The length is probably what has held me back so far, but otherwise it certainly does sound like a really fun game as you mentioned. Maybe once I finally complete Rainbow Cruise (The name is something like that anyway) then I’ll get on to this one. I have heard that the climax is really awesome

      • Yeah, that’s definitely the one! I’ve heard good things about it and the first 2 levels were fun enough. Using the stylus to move isn’t quite as fun as traditional but it is always nice to see Nintendo experimenting until they find the style they like the best

  6. I’m glad I’m not the only one using my Switch on the toilet. Kirby games have never been my favorite, though not that I think they’re bad at all. Just never got into them, really. I’m sure I’ll check this out at some point if it ever gets a price drop (haha at Nintendo games getting price drops).

  7. Well, I hope your next game has a little more longevity while digesting your basket of Easter treats.

    Also, curse you, because now I have Reese’s peanut butter eggs stuck on the brain.

  8. Oh yeah…those chocolate Easter eggs…I know all about them. Paige reviewed them playing the game with her younger siblings, so I guess playing co-op is the way to go with this game. But I agree, best not invite your friends into your bathroom!

    • You can play the game alone just fine, but from the level design its pretty clear that the game was made with co-op in mind. I cannot resist those tasty Easter Eggs. Next week I bet my local supermarket will put their unsold stock on sale. I mught end up buying a bunch of them. Nom, nom, nom.

  9. Oh No! Chocolate gives you indigestion. That’s must be so tough 😥
    I can relate to the gaming on the toilet. Anything containing wheat, gives me severe tummy troubles. Gaming while dealing with the consequences of eating food that doesn’t agree with you, really takes your mind of it 🙂

    This game sounds so cute and fun. Nintendo’s so good at creating games that make you want to go “Aww” 🙂

    • Too much chocolate gives me acid, but the pain is a small price to pay for the yumminess. Nintendo does have a lot of cute characters under their banner, but in my opinion no one is more adorable than Kirby.

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