So… many… Kirbies…
Those “Buy 2 Get 1 Free” used game sales at Gamestop I was referring to a few posts back when I made my “Gaming To-Do” list? Yeah… the sale happened. And it got me good. One of the games I purchased was Kirby’s Dream Collection. Kirby’s Adventure is probably my fondest NES gaming memory. Kirby’s Dreamland 2 also holds a special place in my heart. I played that a lot when I was young using my Super GameBoy. AND this used copy even included the soundtrack! Thank you kind fool who parted with this collection, I am forever grateful.
In case you were wondering, these are the playable games included in the Dream (AKA-20th Anniversary) Collection:
- Kirby’s Dream Land
- Kirby’s Adventure Kirby’s Dream Land 2
- Kirby Super Star
- Kirby’s Dream Land 3
- Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards
I was genuinely happy with this list… Until I went to the Kirby History portion of the disc and checked out the timeline. There were all sorts of OTHER Kirby games I didn’t even know about! Whoever put this collection together was basically like, “Hey, check out all these extra Kirby games that we didn’t bother to include in the ‘Dream’ collection, sucker! But you can watch a two minute video of the gameplay to whet your appetite for a game you’ll never get to play!” Seriously, why would you go out of the way to point out your own laziness/skimpiness? Granted, some of the puzzle ones looked kinda blah, but dammit, if I buy a collection I want them all! (I’m looking at you, Silent Hill HD Collection. Can you even call two games a “collection?”)
Something else I learned while reviewing the Kirby timeline was that a Kirby cartoon exists! I couldn’t take more than five minutes of the first episode before I had to turn it off, but it exists! And if I’d known about it when I was 8 I probably would’ve watched the entire series and have the nostalgia-stomach for it now. Oh, missed opportunities.
I haven’t played Kirby’s Adventure on the Wii disc yet. I feel like I’ve played this game 100 times; most recently the 3D version on my 3DS. But when I am jonesing for it again I’ll check out this version.
The first game I played in the above list was Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards. I never owned a N64 and toyed around with the idea of downloading it on my Wii but never did so I missed out on this game until now. My experience with N64 games is limited, but I think this is the only N64 platformer I’ve ever played, as they were obsessed with the new 3D technology when the system came out. I pretty much coasted through the game until I got to the final boss. The normal final boss was a huge difficulty curve for me, not even considering the extra final boss.Those 20+ lives I had stockpiled (which reset when you reload your save file, FML) got put to use real quick. Before you ask, no, I did not, nor do I have any plans to, collect all the crystal shards so I can get my ass handed to me by an unlockable boss. PS4 is coming out in November, people… Ain’t nobody got time for that!
Then I played Kirby’s Dreamland. It’s like a micro-version of Kirby’s Adventure, which was released later. Super old-school GameBoy, I loved it. I was shocked and amazed when I finished this game in one sitting. That hasn’t happened to me in a very, very long time. Actually… it hasn’t happened since I downloaded and played Kirby’s Dreamland 3 on my Wii for the first time. This time around, I didn’t beat KD3 in one sitting. Oh well. I’m not particularly crazy about the addition of animal friends for Kirby to ride around in/on. Aside from the gimmicky parts when you need them, I refuse to use them.
Kirby Super Star is a fun collection of games as well. While starting it up I had a sneaky suspicion I’d already played it before. About ten minutes later I realized that was because I DID already play the DS remake/re-release/whatever. So I replayed Meta Knight’s Revenge and a couple of other modes because they’re a lot of fun.
This collection also has “Challenge Modes” that are suspiciously similar to those found in Kirby’s Return to Dreamland… They’re cute and fun for a little while, but nothing to get worked up about.
Basically, the dream collection doesn’t have any new exclusive content to be excited about. It preserves the Kirby classics we love and cherish (though Kirby’s Adventure will always trump these other installments for me) and, like I said, goes out of its way to show you all the other games they didn’t bother including in the collection. I will say, after playing the 3 Dream Land games and the Crystal Shards game, Kirby moves really… cumbersomely. I hate having to tap a directional button twice to dash. Kirby is slow. Slow, slow, slow. That was hard to get used to again. And going from one game to another I couldn’t remember whether I was supposed to tap up or the jump button again to get Kirby to float.
I also couldn’t find a button to leave a game and return to the main menu. I have to be blind or something. It must exist… I mean, did they really intend for the player to have to reset their system whenever they wanted to play a different game?
If you like retro platformers and/or some of the Kirby relics, this collection is good to have. But I have to admit, after playing Epic Yarn and Kirby’s Return to Dreamland, some of these were hard to go back to.