Thursday, December 16, 2010

Kirby Super Star Ultra

Kirby Super Star Ultra is an upgrade of a Super Nintendo game with improved graphics and more content. The original was already loaded with stuff to do, so the kart is fairly packed to the brim with activities. It's really a collection of games, including a few touchscreen-based competitive modes but mostly focused on an interesting mix of takes on the normal Kirby gameplay. Kirby runs, jumps, floats around, and can absorb 19 different powers from various enemies that occupy the levels. There's a surprising amount of depth to these abilities, with most of them featuring several different attacks you can figure out, and when you add it all up Kirby's range of skills is quite impressive.Also, at any time you can turn one of those powers into a buddy to help you, which can be controlled by either the computer or a friend with a DS if you have one. They're usually pretty helpful, even if the computer has a tendency to be pretty bad at jumping puzzles.

Things starts out really easy in the first game, but as more unlock they get tougher, especially if you're interested in beating your high score. Some are standard platforming adventures, but others are races or scavenger hunts or have added time pressure. Eventually you get to the arenas, which are just making you face off against a series of bosses with no extra lives, and are definitely the toughest thing in the game. Some of the games are far less linear than others, making you figure out the right way, which makes getting to the end more interesting even if getting from place to place is generally pretty simple. My favorite mode is new to the DS game, letting you play as Meta Knight through most of Kirby's stages, and his skills and bonus powers are a lot of fun after Kirby's relative helplessness. There's some good bonus content too, like multiplayer in pretty much all of the games and galleries with all the movies and sounds you could want. It's just a good time for anyone who enjoys playing games starring that little pink ball, and surprisingly loaded with replayability.

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