Kirby’s Return to Dream Land

We’re back to eating other life forms and snuffing their souls from existence in the name of absorbing their powers. But at least lessons were learned from Kirby’s tale. Namely that there is power in catharsis over difficulty.

Kirby's Return To Dreamland

By Mark Medeiros

The main gameplay of a typical Kirby game is that Kirby can suck up and spit out most enemy flesh. Or swallow and steal the potent superpowers from his adversaries. Part of the fun of those old-fashioned Kirby cannibalism games is discovering and experimenting with the various superpowers. All that is old is new again in Return to Dreamland, as each of the old powers have been given a handful of new tricks and toys for which to administer adorable assault.

Suddenly, every power becomes interesting. The powers that involved you standing perfectly still and hoping Waddle Dee would walk into you bioelectric field. (He usually was.) Well, here you can shake the remote to charge up and fire your electric field of doom. Or draw your spikes while dashing to transform into a rolling tire puncturing all in your path. This game is rated E for Everyone.

Constantly getting new powers, waylaying all that gets in your path, and being wooed by the cheerful background music. All the things Kirby does right, just now you can do it right with up to four people. Up to four co-habitants can hop in at any time and relieve themselves at the expense of poor Whispy Woods.

Player 1 controls Kirby, and is the one for whom the screen and all in-level progress is centered around. The other players can control either different coloured Kirbys, Meta-Knight, King DeDeDe or a spear-toting Waddle Dee of Waddle Death. The latter three play like variations of Kirby with a spear, Kirby with a hammer and Kirby with a sword. In fact, players can share health by way of embracing in hugs. It’s that kind of game.

The plot of the game involves Kirby helping a shipwrecked extra-terrestrial rebuild his ship because Kirby is all about doing the right thing. Along the way, he’s going to dig up collectable items to unlock mini games and challenge rooms, including a surprise Super Scope reference. This is a game that figures out how to make that classic style of Kirbying fun to do. It has a certain charming aethestic and vibe that encourages you to kick back and turn puffy enemies into dust clouds. This is an ideal game to relax to, play in quick bursts between trips to the corner store and dramatic returns to your real life dreamland.

RATING: 4/5


Kirby’s Return to Dreamland Gameplay Trailer


Mark Medeiros is a writer and video game enthusiast, and supporter of fitness and social services. He writes his game reviews at canuckehbasic.blogspot.com