There is no doubt that when Nintendo announced Kirby and the Forgotten Land Last year, a demo trailer captured attention and imagination. It was also necessary, as the franchise is very much in danger of becoming overly predictable and safely. In recent times, some experiments have been carried out, such as Kirby and the Rainbow Curse on the Wii U, but on the 3DS and the Switch in particular, we were fed a hearty diet of charming and relatively simple 2D platformers. Great games, of course (Planet Robobot stood out in particular), but after a slightly boring effort with Kirby Star Allies it’s time for a change.
To give credit to HAL Laboratories and Nintendo, they can’t be accused of being careful with Kirby and the Forgotten Land, certainly not based on what we’ve seen so far. Launching on Switch at the end of March, Kirby is finally returning to the 3D world, and the setting and gameplay have created quite a buzz online, far surpassing anything Kirby has had for quite some time. The first thing to note is the visuals, which seem to make the most of the Switch’s hardware with great art design.
The release date is also pretty close, which reinforces the feeling that Nintendo – through planning and no doubt adjusting the schedules of games that can’t release in 2021 – is set for a great start to the year. Its release on March 25th brings it to our systems just a few weeks after Triangle Strategy, and of course we have Pokémon Legends: Arceus on the way later this month.
Kirby and the Forgotten Land looks to be able to keep up with other major releases, at least, and the latest trailer (at the top of this page) gives us more insight into its structure. It’s perhaps reminiscent of Super Mario 3D World as we see separate worlds and scene selection areas where each level is a decent sized space to explore and clear. We get Odyssey and even Bowser’s Fury vibrations from the visuals and world design.
In addition, the city of Waddle Dee will be the center, which will grow as you progress through the stages; this will presumably be home to minigames and that standard cute Kirby charm. Nintendo’s own description highlights these features.
In this thrilling adventure, you’ll use a range of Kirby’s abilities to fight enemies and navigate through vibrant 3D environments. Advance through a world where nature and past civilization have merged, in a series of areas full of platforming challenges. As you set out to free the Waddle Dees being held captive at the end of each stage, you’ll want to explore every nook and cranny to rescue as many Waddle Dees along the way as possible!
The Beast Pack is a challenge, so along with Kirby’s famous copy abilities, Kirby’s repertoire has new additions – Drill and Ranger copy abilities! Dive into the ground with the copy ability Bur and attack enemies from below with a powerful blow. Your enemies will soon see the stars when Kirby uses Ranger’s copy ability, which also allows you to target a distant enemy.
Kirby and the Forgotten Land also introduces the city of Waddle Dee, which will be the center of your adventure. The city will develop more and more depending on the number of Waddle Dees you save. You will notice the opening of various shops and will be able to enjoy the games loved by the townspeople. Kirby can even help out at the Waddle Dee. You will need to quickly prepare customer orders to keep them satisfied and aim for a high score. You will also meet the Wise Waddle Dee in Waddle Dee Town, who will give you useful advice. By connecting to the Internet, you can find out details based on global player data, such as the total number of Waddle Dees saved worldwide and the most popular copy ability at the moment.
We feel that based on the footage and details, everything is in place to retain Kirby’s key features while also offering something more imaginative and grandiose than recent recordings. Perhaps it also reflects the little patience HAL Laboratories has shown for the Switch a little over four years after Kirby Star Allies; It seems like the time was not wasted.
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