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  • Writer's pictureNoah Yard

Kirby and the Forgotten Land Review.

I’ve played side-scroller Kirby games before and honestly I didn’t enjoy them much, they were either too easy, or I just wasn’t enamoured with the side scrolling action on Planet Pop Star. But just like some of the more genre-bending games of other franchises that the Switch has introduced, the new Kirby game “Kirby and the Forgotten Land”, changes the tone of the franchise totally. And, on top of it, does it in an inventive, adorable, and super fun way.

I think if you had to compare it to another switch game, and I’m very unoriginal so that’s what I do, it reminds me the most of Super Mario Odyssey. Kirby frolics in a weird, post-apocalyptic version of an Earth-like planet. Kirby takes on the abilities of the creatures around him, some can breathe fire, some can dig underground, and some can throw bombs. These abilities can be upgraded when you find the blueprints hidden within certain levels, making your abilities stronger.

Kirby can also float a little bit, and inhale everyday items that give him new and exciting abilities. You wouldn’t think that swallowing a lightbulb would be fun but in this game it is.

There is a bit of a lack of story, it’s simple really, you save the Waddle Dees who have been captured in cages by evil forces, and the monstrously devilish King Dedede, a penguin with a penchant for kidnapping your pals. It's formulaic. Link always has to save Zelda, Mario saves peach and, in this game, in the same way, Kirby saves the Waddle Dees.

There are two difficulty levels, one will snag you more coins if you try for the harder difficulty.

There is also a hub world, Waddle Dee town where you can do things like redeem codes for fun prizes, collect figurines, play minigames, and chat with your rescued Waddle Dee friends.

Then there are the themed level worlds, very similar to a Mario Bros game. One is a giant theme park, one is a dry oasis, and then there is your typical fire level filled with lave and fire shooting baddies. Through these levels, you are given challenges. Save the hidden Waddle Dees in each level, but also perform additional fun side quests that will help you save additional critters.

The biggest and most marketed aspect of the game is Kirby can swallow, well, anything now! This includes staircases, vending machines, wind machines and traffic cones. Sucking up each of these items will grant Kirby very special abilities. To me it does feel slightly derivative of Super Mario Odyssey’s cap trick, where you can control things with Mario’s hat, but it’s still a great mechanic and driving a car that has been half-swallowed by Kirby is still immensely fun if not a bit visually disturbing.

Overall, I highly rate this new Kirby addition to the little pink puffballs franchise. Like Breath of the wild, and Mario Odyssey before it, I believe it will change the trajectory of future Kirby games and become an instant Nintendo switch classic that you would be bananas not to want to play.

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