Kirby is a mainstay in Nintendo’s staple of mascots, however, the little guy just doesn’t get as much love as Mario, Zelda, and some of the Japanese company’s other characters. Perhaps it is because Nintendo uses him in weird games outside of his typical genre. Maybe it’s because he’s too cute. Who knows?
Whatever the reason, I am going to push aside the lack of love for Kirby and dedicate an entire article to listing off my favorite Kirby games. For those of you who think Kirby is as awesome as I do, this will simply be affirmation of what you already know. For the rest of you, try to get your hands on these games, and you just might come to find that you have a new favorite Nintendo mascot. If you think Kirby is just for kids, you are mistaken.
Anyway, without further delay, let’s jump right into the best Kirby games ever made (in no particular order).
Kirby 64: the Crystal Shards
Kirby’s venture in the 3D world was actually quite good. Is it the best game on the Nintendo 64? No, most certainly not, but it’s still a fantastic example of what little Kirby can do. While this is not a true 3D platformer like Mario 64, it still gave some of the freedom of a 3D game. On top of that, the game looked fantastic for the time. It’s just a really fun experience that is worth playing through, even with all the modern games out there today.
Another cool thing about this game is the way Kirby is able to use his trademark sucking in enemies and stealing abilities. In this game, Kirby can combine powers from enemies which can lead to some interesting effects.
Kirby Super Star Ultra
The first version of Kirby Super Star actually featured eight different games in one, but unlike so many multicarts of the Super Nintendo days, this did not feel like a cheap cash grab. Instead, it felt like each of the games included brought enough fun and enjoyment to stand on its own. As good as that was, Kirby Super Star Ultra on the DS brought 16 games to the table, and each one is awesome.
For anyone new to Kirby games, this is a great place to start, as it gives you a broad feel of all the cool stuff Kirby can do. If you have a DS, play this game and you will be incredibly happy.
Kirby’s Epic Yarn
At first glance, this game seems like it would be terrible. It removes the art style we are used to seeing and replaces it with a weird neon look. The yarn look and feel of the game actually applies to the gameplay, with an arts-and-crafts mechanic that changes things up a great deal.
Instead of the moves we are comfortable with seeing from Kirby, we see him having the ability to reshape his yarn body to whatever he needs to get though the situation. It’s a really fun game, and it shows just how versatile Kirby is as a character.
Kirby’s Dream Land 3
This game holds true to what the main Kirby games are all about. While some of the best Kirby games are the ones where they break the mold, there is nothing wrong with taking the tried and true formula and bringing it back every now, and that is exactly what Dream Land 3 does.
This game takes the Dream Land formula and moves it from the portable space to the SNES, and it does it perfectly. If you want some classic sucking in enemies from your Kirby experience, this is the game for you.
Kirby Canvas Curse
This game is exatcly what the Nintendo DS needed at the time. It actually uses the touchscreen and stylus in a fun and interesting way. Players use the stylus to drag Kirby through eight colorful painted worlds by drawing paths. Gamers indirectly control Kirby as he makes his way through battles in a way that feels fun and fresh.
What makes this game special is the fact that it could not exist without the touchscreen. Sure, Nintendo could have released Kirby’s Dream Land 4 in its place, but instead, it opted to make the most of its hardware, and it did in a way that feels truly magical.
Kirby and The Amazing Mirror
This is one of the first games where Kirby veered off his traditional gameplay style, and it was where we really came to accept that Nintendo was not content to crank out the same old Kirby games, as it tends to do with its other franchises. I will admit that I was hesitant when the game first came out, but once I got my hands on it, I knew it was something special.
Fans of games like Metroid and Castlevania should feel right at home in the Amazing Mirror. If that’s not a serious change from Kirby’s cute and cuddly sidescrolling platforming, I don’t know what is!
These are, in my opinion, the very best Kirby has to offer. As you can see, unlike many Nintendo mascots, the little pink puff ventures out of his comfort zone, which gives his games a certain amount of variety and excitement. Of course, other Kirby games are great, such as the rest of the Kirby’s Dream Land series, but these take the cake.
Which Kirby games do you like best? Hit the comments section below and let us know.