Condemn O.R. Condone – Kirby: Triple Deluxe (3DS)

Kirby Triple Deluxe offers so much great content in one package, making it a must-have title on the 3DS.

The Kirby series is one of Nintendo’s most enduring yet often-overlooked franchises that they have going. It all began in 1992 when Masahiro Sakurai (who is more known for creating the Super Smash Bros. series) directed Kirby’s Dream Land, which spawned countless critically-acclaimed sequels. This is the first game in the series to pop-up on the 3DS and Kirby’s first game since 2011’s 1-2 punch of  the DS’ Kirby Mass Attack and the Wii’s Kirby’s Return To Dreamland. So, how does it shape up? In a nutshell, it offers just about everything a Kirby or platforming fan could want.

The story starts with a giant beanstalk called the Dreamstalk showing up while Kirby is sleeping and taking both his house and King Dedede’s castle into the sky. When Kirby wakes up the next morning he is suddenly in a new land called Floralia, which means that he must fight his way through several worlds that all contain many levels in order to make it to King Dedede’s castle and right the wrong’s of everything that has transpired.

Kirby: Triple Deluxe controls like many of the other 2d Kirby games, as you traverse from left to right as you suck up your enemies and adopt all of their different powers; such as bombs, swords, boomerangs and a hell of a lot more. You’ll also be tasked with collecting Sun Stones and Key Chains throughout each level, which help you unlock more levels and drive up the completion rating, respectively. The one major addition to the gameplay is an item that transforms Kirby into Hypernova Kirby, which allows Kirby to suck up humongous monstrosities and lay absolute waste to everything in the level.

Kirby Triple Deluxe

Of course, this being a Nintendo 3DS game, the 3D element comes in with full force and actually makes great use of the system’s capabilities. Sometimes you will come across instances where you will move form the foreground to the background of the screen, which allows you to discover hidden goodies or keys that must then be brought back to the foreground. These sections truly shine when you come across a giant beam that extends to both the foreground *and* background, allowing you to reign destruction on two different areas at once. Elsewhere the 3D is simply used to make things appear as if they are coming out of the screen; such as enemy attacks, items or text.

The enemies in Triple Deluxe all vary greatly and force you to utilize different strategies to come out in one piece. Some enemies will be extremely fast and require precise timing to take them down, while others will be flinging bombs or shooting arrows at you. How you decide to take down these enemies is entirely up to you, as Kirby has a plethora of different skill sets that he can absorb that give him a huge variety of abilities. The game always gives you many different options in each level, making each new level feel fresh and exciting.

A platformer of this ilk would be nothing without great boss fights, and that is definitely one area where Triple Deluxe knocks it out of the park. Throughout the course of the game you will come across both mini and regular bosses and many of them put up quite a fight. They have large amounts of health which requires you to be patient and time your attacks, otherwise you’ll find yourself taking big amounts of damage very quickly. I won’t spoil the finale, but the final boss sequence is one of the most intense and rewarding finales that I have played in a long time.

Kirby Triple Deluxe

All of this and we haven’t even delved into the other modes that this game offers! Outside of the story mode you also have access to the Kirby Fighters and Dedede’s Drum Dash modes, and once you complete the game you unlock The Arena and Dedede tour modes. Kirby Fighters is a Super Smash Bros.-esque mode that pits you against a variety of different Kirby’s all contained in a handful of Super Smash Bros.-esque stages. This mode is an absolute blast, as all of the chaotic mayhem of the smash series shines through brilliantly as all matter of items, environmental events and more all add up into a consistently exciting experience. The fact that this game packs its own Super Smash Bros. mode is worth the price of admissions, alone. It also has a multiplayer feature, making this a mode with infinite replay value.

Dedede’s Drum Dash is a rhythm-based game in which you must jump from drum to drum to the beat of the song. The better you time your beat the higher that Dedede will jump, which allows you to collect more coins and improve your score. You can also clap to the beat of the music to get bonus points, but mastering this while also timing jumps and avoiding obstacles is truly challenging. It’s not the most in-depth of modes, but the core mechanics are so addicting that I find myself coming back to it a lot.

The two unlockable modes are more standard affairs that you come across occasionally in other platformers of this type. The Arena is essentially a boss rush mode, pitting you against both mini and regular bosses in a row with a hub world in-between that gives you a breather and limited health regeneration. Dedede tour lets you play through the story mode as none other than King Dedede, who controls a bit differently and has to take down more difficult enemies and bosses. Make it through this mode and you will even face off against a new boss at the end and witness new scenes.

Kirby Triple Deluxe

Kirby: Triple Deluxe offers so much content that is all insanely fun to playthrough. The main story mode is a solid length that has great level design, enemy variety and challenge that would be more than a solid package all on its own. However, the fact that the game also packs in Kirby Fighters, Dedede’s Drum Dash, The Arena and Dedede tour make this a game that is impossible for me to not completely recommend. The Kirby series has always offered consistently high quality games, but Kirby: Triple Deluxe mixes that high quality with high quantity to results in yet another must-have game on the 3DS.

CONDONE

These New Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 ReMIX Screenshots Will Win Your Heart

Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 ReMIX is making its way to the PlayStation 3 later this year, which packages Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix, Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep Final Mix and HD cinematics of Kingdom Hearts Re:coded.

It’s a ways off, but to tide you over Sqaure Enix has released some brand new screenshots that you can check out in the gallery below.

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My Judgment:

Seeing these screenshots reminds me how much I absolutely adore this franchise and I can’t wait to dive back into the spectacular Kingdom Hearts II and experience both Birth By Sleep and Re:coded for the first time. The mixture of the playful Disney world and the darker Final Fantasy world is one I can’t get enough of, and I can’t believe an entire console generation went by without ever getting a traditional third entry in the series.

Here’s A Closer Look At Some Of Sunset Overdrive’s Weapons

The Xbox One exclusive Sunset Overdrive is shaping up to be one of the most highly-anticipated games of the year, as just about every new piece of information that comes out makes it look even better.

Now, over on Sunset TV, more information has been revealed about the game. Host Brandon Winfrey shows off some of the game’s crazy weapons, such as High Fidelity and TNTeddy. Check out the video below. 

My Judgment:

Although I’ve seen these weapons before, hearing about the little nuances of the weapons is really great. I love that High Fidelity will have a random ricochet effect, which will hopefully result in some hilarious knock outs. Insomniac Games seems to be making all the right moves with this game.

Is This Leaked Footage From Demon’s Souls 2?

Some very sweet (if true) rumors have been making the rounds about developer From Software possibly announcing a new game that looks a *heck* of a lot like their awesome Souls games at this year’s E3.

Now, a new 18-second video taken from this unknown game (code-named Project Beast) is showing off some of the action, and it absolutely screams the Souls series. We get a look at fog doors, enemies and some truly creepy music that is all very reminiscent of the Souls series. Check out the video below. 

From Software hasn’t made any announcements yet, but E3 looks like it will be the perfect place to make a huge announcement like this. If this is Demon’s Souls II then that would mean that it will more than likely be a PlayStation 4 exclusive.

My Judgment:

The Souls series is currently the best-running gaming franchise going right now, in my humble opinion, so if this does end up being legit then I am frickin’ ecstatic. Dark Souls II came out earlier this year and From Software delivered yet another awesomely-engrossing game, and I’m perfectly ready to hear that more of it is on the horizon.

Ratchet & Clank HD Trilogy Coming To PS Vita

If you happen to be a Ratchet & Clank fan and own a PlayStation Vita then I have some very good news for you. Sony and Mass Media have announced that the PlayStation 3 collection of the first three Ratchet & Clank games will be getting a new version on the PlayStation Vita.

Insomniac Games’ James Stevenson said that, “Since the HD trilogy was released, one of the biggest requests from many of you was for a version of the Trilogy to come to PlayStation Vita. We’ve heard you loud and clear, and thanks to Sony and Mass Media, the Ratchet & Clank HD Trilogy will be something you can play on the go from 2nd July (and from 9th July in Australia),”  said Insomanic Games’ James Stevenson.”

Ratchet & Clank HD Trilogy on PS Vita will cost $30 and will be available both physically and digitally.

My Judgment:

I love the Ratchet & Clank series and I love the PlayStation Vita, so this is a win-win for me. Although I already own this HD collection on PlayStation 3, I can see this game playing great on the Vita due to its control-scheme and vibrant graphics. My first Ratchet & Clank experience was actually on the PSP with the spin-off game Clank, so I can attest to the series being a perfect fit on the hand-held.

Guilty Gear Xrd SIGN Announced For PS3 & PS4

Arc System Works and Red have revealed that they have been working on an all-new Guilty Gear game called Guilty Gear Xrd SIGN, and it will be coming to both PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 in North America later this year.

This game is being looked at as a back-to-basics for the series, as the last installment didn’t do too well and this game is looking to cut off all excess fat. The most notable aspect of the game is that it is being designed as a 2D fighting game rather than 3D and will feature Cel Shaded graphics.

The game will ship with 15 playable characters, but other than that there is little else known about the game. I’m sure it will make an appearance at E3 and much more information will come to light.

My Judgment:

I prefer the 2D-style fighting games, so it’s cool to hear that Guilty Gear is going back to that. Who knows whether or not it will be any good, but you gotta give developers credit when they are actively trying to create something that improves upon what has come before.

Sonic Boom Adding New Character Sticks To The Cast…

Big Red Button Entertainment and Sanzaru Games’ Sonic Boom is shaping up to be a pretty big departure from the tried-and-true Sonic universe, at least visually. Now they are showing off a brand new character in the game that goes by the name of Sticks.

Sticks is a jungle badger that has been living alone in the wilderness for a long time, and has a very different personality compared to other members of the cast. Chief Content Officer Hiroyuki Miyazaki says that “”Sticks is a significant addition to the Sonic Boom universe and the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise. She brings a quirky personality and perspective to the team dynamic, and we look forward to sharing this energetic and funny new character with the world.”

They released a video showing off Sticks and her voice actor, and you can watch it below. 

Sonic Boom is being released exclusively on Nintendo consoles later this year.

My Judgment:

Although it remains to be seen how the quality of the overall game will be, this Sticks character looks like she could be extremely annoying. Her voice is quite irritating, and in a series that has become known for bad-voice acting Sticks could be taking it all to a new low. I guess we’ll find out sometime later this year.