Review by Tighter

Reviewed: 07/03/00 | Updated: 07/03/00

Kirby's back in style on the N64!

Wow! I thought that little pink puffball would never make it onto the N64! But he's back in the great new game: Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards. A simplistic but fun game, Kirby 64 is sure to be a winner this Summer.

Graphics: 10/10
I enjoy the classic 2-D side scrolling game, and Nintendo has used their ''2 1/2-D'' to make this game look great. The backround scenery in each level is superb, from the steaming volcanoes of Neo Star to the freezing cold lakes of Shiver Star. All of Kirby's new and improved attacks look great, particularly the fire-rock (volcano) combo and the electric-cutter (double lightsaber) combo. All of the characters (especially Kirby and Waddle Dee), look incredibly realistic and their motions are very lifelike. The bosses look fantastic. Nintendo really outdid themselves on the graphics of this game.

Play Control: 10/10
The play control is fun and easy to learn. Swallowing enemies is simple, and combining their powers doesn't take much practice.

Gameplay: 10/10
Kirby 64's gameplay has to be greatest aspect of the whole game. Every single power combination results in a unique and exciting ability. Each one is a blast to use, from the awesome flaming sword to the hilarious refrigerator. Once you get a taste of how much fun they are, you'll want to try them all. The levels in this game are great, and it seems each one provides a new and exciting obstacle to tackle. The enemies aren't terribly difficult to deal with, and neither are the bosses. However, they are very fun to battle, and you'll have fun trying out different power combos to see what works best on each of them. Basically, three words describe Kirby 64's gameplay: FUN, FUN, FUN!

Challenge: 7/10
This is probably the only slight downfall of Kirby 64. The game seems to be geared more for younger kids rather than 12 to 13-year olds. However, this does not impact the overall joy of the game very much, unlike with Yoshi's Story. I still found Kirby 64 a lot of fun to play.

Story: 9/10
The storyline is simplistic but well-thought-out. Basically, an evil force known as dark matter comes and takes over the peaceful ripple star. A small farie, known as Ribbon, manages to escape with a large crystal that the dark matter is after. As she escapes, the Dark Matter comes and shatters the crystal into 100 pieces, scattering them across six different stars. Ribbon knows the crystal shards must be retrieved and dark matter vanquished. Ribbon calls on the one person she knows can tackle such a task: Kirby! The cutscenes are fun to watch, and really add to the joy of the game. Throughout Kirby 64, you also get a very good taste of all the characters and their personalities. Nice job here, Nintendo and HAL!

Replay: 10/10
You can beat this game quickly, but it's so much fun you'll want to keep coming back for more! There's so much to do, from collecting all of the crystal shards to trying out every power combo on all the levels, the game is practically void of boredom. The minigames are also a great addition, and they are much better than those in Pokemon Stadium.

Overall: 9/10
Kirby 64, simply put, is a simple, easy game but a blast to play. If you are only interested in this game for a good challenge, then it's not worth buying, but maybe a good rental. However, if you are a gamer that enjoys fun, solid gameplay, then this pink puffball is for you.

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

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