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Let's Play: Kirby Super Star


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Spring Breeze: first post | last post

DynaBlade: first post | last post

The Great Cave Offensive: first post | last post

Revenge of MetaKnight: first post | last post

Milkyway Wishes: first post | last post

The Arena: full notes

 

Okay, hear me out...

 

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I know that this is quite a contrast to the three classic Persona let's play threads I made in the past couple of years, but I think that this would make for a fun little playthrough thread simply because there's a lot of content in here. In case you don't know about the Kirby games, they make up a long-running series of charming platformers that focus on absorbing enemy abilities and using those abilities to make progress. In short, it offers a lot of agency about how players want to tackle the challenges ahead of them, which makes them pretty satisfying and replayable. Oh, and they also have really nice presentation and some great soundtracks. :wub: 

 

I was late discovering Kirby Super Star because I never had a SNES growing up - I even missed out on the Nintendo DS update :blush: . I think I had a brief look at the game via emulation on PC once, but it wasn't until I got a SNES Classic Mini that I really took a closer look at the game. The reason something like Super Star is a nice candidate for a playthrough thread is that there's a ton of things to unlock and complete, and so the game in itself is like its own mini-series - as soon as one of the smaller games is over, something else might unlock and on it goes.

 

From what I can gather, the route to the "ending" involves:

 

Completing Spring Breeze and DynaBlade (unlocks Revenge of MetaKnight)
Completing The Great Cave Offensive and Revenge of MetaKnight (unlocks Milkyway Wishes)
Completing Milkyway Wishes (unlocks The Arena?)
Completing The Arena (unlocks a sound test?)

 

I'm taking a few guesses at the last couple, based on internet sources and video footage, because I think I've only ever got as far as Milkyway Wishes in my own random endeavours, so I guess this is another P1-style thing of me wanting closure. I'm pretty sure I can get through the first few minigames without too much trouble - the main obstacles for me will be Milkyway Wishes, The Arena, and (depending on my screw-ups) The Great Cave Offensive. Also, a lot of my previous experience with the game was done in co-op, so I'll be at a bit of a disadvantage this time. I might get started this evening, or maybe in the week. And I think I'll be playing via PC emulation, simply for the screenshots.

 

You can catch my older "Let's Play" threads here:

Persona: https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/306127-lets-play-persona-1996/

Persona 2: Innocent Sin: https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/308695-lets-play-persona-2-innocent-sin/

Persona 2: Eternal Punishment: https://www.rllmukforum.com/index.php?/topic/311426-lets-play-persona-2-eternal-punishment/

 

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Great thread! Picked up SFC and DS copies of this a couple of months ago and haven't really got around to spending much time with either of them yet, so this is a great excuse to do so! Will post some thoughts when I do. :)

 

Every single Kirby game is excellent, and for a series that must be selling well enough to justify its continued existence it seems awfully "slept on".

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~Mission 1: Prevent Starvation~

 

I checked and double-checked that I have "clean" files so that I can start from the beginning, and then began. The intro plays and shows Kirby zooming around on a star in fancy Mode 7, before appearing on the title screen. It's an intro that only lasts a few seconds, but since this is a collection all of the exposition will be in the minigames themselves. If you idle on the title screen, you get a rolling demo of one of the minigames, and it swaps minigames between cycles (weirdly, one rolling demo is for Revenge of Meta Knight, which is still locked at the moment. Spoilers, dude.) If we start the game we're dropped straight into the selection of available minigames - it's a bit abrupt, but I think most minigames have an optional tutorial when you select them, so it's all good.

 

With an empty save file, a new player will be able to select from Spring Breeze, Dynablade and The Great Cave Offensive, as well as Gourmet Race and Megaton Punch - which are minigames that happen to be even more "mini". Of all the conditions for our first unlock, I personally recommend playing Spring Breeze before anything else - it's short, it eases you in, and it feels a lot like Dreamland. So we'll be going there first. If you select one of the minigames, you get a screen showing the "level" (difficulty) rated in stars, your high score, and a bit of intro text. Spring Breeze has a one star rating, and is described thusly: "HELP! All the food from Dream Land has been stolen! Hurry, Kirby, or everyone will starve!" Jesus, way to ease me in. We can see an optional tutorial that details the basics, and then we're in.

 

Spring Breeze starts with the stage Green Greens, and immediately one of the first enemies you can consume grants the Beam ability - a short attack that fires in a wide arc immediately in front of Kirby. It's not the strongest thing but it is useful as a partner ability. (In this Kirby game you can have Kirby take on the ability of a consumed foe, or create an AI partner that has the ability.) There's a door to a Maxim Tomato (restore life to Kirby - health items can also be shared with partners) pretty early on if you've already taken damage, but before long you head to a Warp Star and the next location. Here, we see the first miniboss - Poppy Bros Sr. is the bomb-throwing enemy that also bestows a useful ability, and at first the Beam is pretty bad at damage dealing against him, but we can make a partner from it (Waddle Doo), turn it back into an ability, reconsume it (without swallowing), throw it back at the boss and it pretty much instantly kills him. Yes, I totally meant to do that. We can grab the Bomb ability now (throw damage-dealing bombs at foes), but since there are some more Poppy Bros enemies we can also create a partner and then take the ability again for Kirby.

 

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In the next area we can pretty much wreck shop and also break open walls to paths that lead to health items and 1-ups, before facing the first boss of Green Greens, Whispy Woods. Whispy is a recurring boss in the series and exists as a giant tree that drops fruit on Kirby, but the fruit is easy to dodge, and the damage that comes from two characters with bomb abilities means that the boss is defeated in seconds. The next stage is Float Islands, but I'll start this another time as I wanted to see how the first update will go. Yes, this means saves, but (a) I want to avoid walls of text with my updates, (b) I'll be making saves between stages like this, rather than every two seconds and (c) I know that some of the later minigames have huuuuuge "stages" (although, happily, this will make for more intricate details of my suffering), so please understand.

 

Current status:
Game: Spring Breeze
Score: 21'460
Ability: Bomb
Partner: Poppy Bros. Jr.

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We enter Float Islands with our health refreshed and our abilities intact. For the moment, we're going to keep these as the opening area just has a few enemies and a body of water you can skip entirely by floating over it, but as we enter the first door we're in a new interior area. It's kind of subterranean, with a subdued blue colour scheme and a few spike hazards on the floor and ceiling. There are a few enemies below but also some food immediately nearby, so you can heal up if any damage is taken (a staple of this game is also the ability to share surplus health with your partner, so if you collect food whilst your health is at 100% you can use it to heal them instead.) We quickly uncover one exit in the upper corner, but then another below. I check the upper one first - it's a single-screen room with a body of water you can swim in to get a 1up! There are some falling hazards in this room, but you're fine as long as you stay low and move quickly. Moving to the lower door, we run into Mr. Freeze - a snowman foe who can use ice attacks. He's in a bit of a tight spot, so when I try to get to him we both receive damage, and Poppy Bros. Jr. actually ends up dying (if a partner dies and you have no ability, you can absorb them again, but...) Since Kirby has a bomb ability, however, we can "spend" it to get Poppy Bros. Jr. back. Sadly, I miss out on getting Mr. Freeze's ability, but as we enter the next area we can grab an Invincible Candy - a lollipop item that grants temporary invulnerability. When Kirby has this, most foes that he runs into will take damage, even minibosses, so it's worth sprinting forward before it runs out. Sure enough, we find the walrus miniboss Mr. Frosty in the next room and can ram into him to destroy his lifebar in one hit. I quickly grab his Ice ability and then we catch a warp star to a distant island.

 

The Ice ability is a short-range attack that turns foes into ice cubes that can be shoved towards enemies as a projectile attack. Not all foes can become ice-cubes, but it's still a useful damage dealer for certain situations... We take out a few enemies on our way forward, but quickly run into another door, leading to the boss room. The boss of Float Islands is actually a pair of bosses, Lololo and Lalala - these squishy creatures once featured in Kirby's Dream Land, and appear here as a walking blue blob (Lololo) and a walking pink blob with a bow (Lalala.) The battle takes place on a single screen with multiple screen-wide platforms to jump between, and during the battle they will walk along the platforms, using small doors at the ends of the platforms to move to a higher or lower level. They also push objects and hazards along in front of them, so they're easier to attack from behind. Even so, the range of the Ice attack is good enough for Kirby to fire it as one of them walks towards him (so long as you get out of the way when they're too close) and this deals with them immediately, so only the other boss remains. As I wait for a decent opportunity, we have a bit of a partner fail - Poppy Bros. Jr. gets a bit too excited and ends up killing himself in his effort to get hits in, but I'm able to finish the job by waiting for the boss to pass by and then jumping to his platform and attacking from behind.

 

This brings Float Islands to a close, and next time we'll be at Bubbly Clouds. Kirby will be going in with no partner for the moment -_- but there will be opportunities to find more dudes soon!

 

Current status:
Game: Spring Breeze
Score: 48'990
Ability: Ice
Partner: (none)

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We're already about halfway through Spring Breeze, but it's kind of intended as the introduction to Kirby Super Star, so it's not too demanding. Don't worry - the later games become a little more intense, but there will be more on that when we get there. Bubbly Clouds has another twee tune which is almost like a dreamy waltz, and it has a slightly more uptempo version in Dreamland 1 for Game Boy as well. This stage takes place atop clouds in the sky, and from what I recall you're pretty much doomed if you fall off the bottom of the screen because it's all a permanent death zone, but I float around most of the time so I never bother finding out. The first priority is to get Kirby a partner and then a new ability - just across from us is a blade-slashing foe we can consume for the Sword ability, but I convert the Ice power into a partner (named Chilly) first, so things will be a little more comfortable. This place has cannons firing at us and plenty of other interesting foes who would offer Beam and Mirror abilities, but right now there's no major danger and we can fight through everything. A few food drops in places keep us healthy and the platforming isn't too scary (apart from the threat of falling off the screen), but we quickly run into a miniboss in the form of Kracko Jr! Shown as a floating eye surrounded by orbs moving around him, he's like the little brother of the infamous cloud boss Kracko (that one-eyed cloud boss that appears all over the Kirby series.) He can deal damage by ramming into Kirby or Chilly, and he can also drop smaller enemies down that need to be taken out. Under normal circumstances this wouldn't be tricky... but the single-screen room for this encounter has no platforms, Kracko Jr. likes to hang around in the top corner of the screen - and so I can't get out my Sword attack without floating up to meet him, cancelling my float, mashing the attack button and hoping for the best. Surprisingly for an AI ally, Chilly does a really smart move here - placing a stationery ice block that ends up in Kracko Jr's ramming trajectory - and deals most of the damage. Sadly Chilly himself gets killed by the rest of Kracko Jr's ramming move, but the sacrifice was welcome.

 

I finish Kracko Jr. off and catch a warp star to the next area, turning Kirby's Sword ability into a Blade Knight partner. Immediately in this room we can see Walky, the microphone enemy that, when swallowed, gives Kirby the Mike ability - a three-use screen-clearing move. This isn't very useful right now, but if I defeat the enemy I can scroll the screen forward and then back and he'll return. We're faced with a wall of blocks to clear (when you cancel Kirby's regular floating he lets out a puff of air that counts as an attack, and he can also headbonk them by jumping, destroying them) and eventually reach the door to the next room. This place has some Parasol and Cutter foes that are good for short-range combat, but we destroy the first few ones with our last Mike uses. They do kind of come back though, so I grab a Cutter ability for Kirby and another as a partner, named Sir Kibble, then proceed to another door. Here, we face the boss of this stage, Kracko himself. Again, this boss is awkward to battle as it hangs around in the air and (with the Cutter ability, at least) you can't reach him without floating up, cancelling the float and attacking before you drop. We actually lose a life the first time around - sometimes you'll be floating at the top of the screen, but Kracko will float under and then rise up to hit you. Sometimes you'll need to be at close range for an attack to land but he'll fire projectiles around him that damage you. Sometimes you'll try to jump up and to the side of him, but he'll move to meet you and you'll just bump into him and take damage. So yeah, I died.

 

The restart point is at the Parasol and Cutter foes so it's okay, and I go in with the Cutter ability and Sir Kibble again. This time I only get hit once by his movements across the screen, and although I lose my ability I'm able to snag a Beam ability from one of the regular foes that drop into this room. The wide downward arc of the Beam attack means that if I do a small jump and fire, I can still hit him when he's around the top corner, so I finish off Kracko and quickly turn my ability into another Waddle Doo partner in preparation for the next bit. In fact, this stage is over now, so the "next bit" is the final stage of Spring Breeze; Mount Dedede. I can't remember if this is one of the games where Dedede himself is wrecked by the Beam ability (you effectively stunlock him so that he can't get a move out) - I might be getting confused with Adventure - but it would be ideal to have for this last stage (preferably on Kirby rather than as a partner.)

 

Current status:
Game: Spring Breeze
Score: 108'980
Ability: (none)
Partner: Waddle Doo

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~Spring Breeze: Finale~

 

The intro screen appears - "Last Stage - Mt. Dedede" - and we see Kirby on a warp star descending on a castle(?) on top of the mountain. It cuts to gameplay, where Kirby and Waddle Doo land in the first room at speed. There's a door directly in front of the player here, but first it's worth exploring the room as there are useful abilities to pick up - basically, how do you want to take on Dedede? The room has the Beam, Parasol and Bomb abilities available... but only if I can swallow the correct enemy without Waddle Doo destroying them first. I want to get the beam and try the stunlock thing I mentioned above, but I accidentally swallow two enemies at once. When this happens the game rapidly cycles every ability until you hit a button, and you have to hope that it stops on a good one. Interestingly, I end up selecting "Super", which is the Invincible Candy in ability form. Even though it still runs out after a duration of time (like the Candy) this could actually end up being pretty great if we can do the same thing we did to Mr. Frosty a couple of updates ago - run to the door and take out Dedede by ramming into him. Unfortunately, Dedede kind of just ignores Kirby - I'm pretty much on top of him and yet he's not taking damage - and so I decide to abandon this attempt and effectively die to restart the level. I mean, once this useless invincibility expires you're left with regular Kirby - sure, I could take Waddle Doo's ability, but then I'd be doing the battle on my own.

 

(As we're between attempts it's worth pointing out that the framing of the final battle is awesome - you go from wandering the halls of the "castle" to landing in a full-blown wrestling (or boxing? I dunno) ring - in the background are a bunch of characters cheering us on, including many of the characters we recruited as partners throughout this game, such as Poppy Bros. Jr. and Chilly. The ring itself has Dedede's face and name all over it, and at the top of the screen you see stage lights and the details of the event: "Champion KING DEDEDE VS Challenger Kirby". It's quite a tonal shift and it doesn't make much sense - why is there a ring and a crowd in here anyway :P - but it's still amazing and helps build the hype.)

 

EpVV0nE.jpg

 

On my next life, I make sure that I grab the Beam ability only, and then Waddle Doo and Kirby enter the door again. He does get a bit of breathing space during the pauses between our Beam attacks, and Waddle Doo ends up losing all of his energy at the end, but when we're able to get him between us, he can't do a whole lot because he's pretty much completely stunlocked, and it's soon over. The screen flashes with red strobes and Dedede flies offscreen into the air - the scene fades out and then we get an outside shot of the castle as Dedede bursts out through a hole in the side of the castle and flies offscreen. After the traditional end-of-level dance. Kirby swells to a balloon shape whilst securing the castle, and lifts it through the sky as various items fall out of it. Then the credits for Spring Breeze roll. The staff names are shown below an image of the balloon floating across the sea, whilst the sun sets. We then zoom back in to see Kirby lose his balloon size and drop the castle, but some glowing stars continue to hold it up. Kirby lands on a platform in front of an audience as items fall from the castle, and he holds a sign with the word "NEXT".

 

Aaaaand we're thrown back to the selection of smaller games, so for all intents and purposes Spring Breeze is done. Our "status" in Kirby Super Star is saved, too - if we hit the reset button, load our file and select Spring Breeze (without actually starting it), it shows our last score as the new hi-score for that minigame, and there's a little rosette beside the image for it. Next, I'll probably take a look at DynaBlade, as it's a more conventional platformer-style minigame when compared to Gourmet Race, but as far as Kirby Super Star is concerned, I feel like we've barely started...

 

Final status for Spring Breeze:
Score: 209'880
Ability: Beam
Partner: Waddle Doo

 

(E: also I might add links to first and last posts of minigame playthroughs in the OP as I go on...)

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Back at the minigame selection screen, we can choose between DynaBlade and Gourmet Race if we want to complete our prerequisites in the order the OP lists. From what I remember, Gourmet Race is more of a one-gimmick thing that spans several "legs" of a competition, whilst DynaBlade is another conventional Kirby-style platformer, so I'd like to take that one on next. Again, these minigames have a difficulty rating and some intro text. The difficulty of Spring Breeze was one star compared to DynaBlade's three stars - and the intro claims that "DynaBlade is destroying all the crops. She must be stopped. Master the different abilities and defeat her." So Spring Breeze started with food being stolen and this has crops being destroyed? Okay... Again, there's a tutorial here - it explains how to swallow enemies and create helpers, as well as dash, slide and guard... so there aren't really any gameplay systems specific to DynaBlade that a player needs to worry about, but if this was the minigame they started with, they'd have to read the tutorial. What is specific to DynaBlade is a world map - unlike Spring Breeze, this minigame has a map similar to Super Mario World where you move between spots on the map and each one is its own stage. Right now, we just have to start at the beginning.

 

Kirby starts on his own on a big set of descending platforms, so we head down and immediately bump into an enemy and take damage. Great. Heading through the nearby door we can grab a Parasol ability and create a helper from it, and then find more Parasol enemies to give Kirby the ability too (I think I saw enemies with the Beam ability as well but my "helper" kept killing them before I had the chance to try and swallow them. Nice.) We proceed through pools of water and over disintegrating blocks, then find some more food for healing and enter the next room. This has walls that can be destroyed if you have an ability that can hit the "bomb" blocks, and some walls have items behind them - there's a 1up behind one wall, and whilst the Parasol can't reach the "bomb" block that can destroy the wall, we're able to find an enemy with the Beam ability, which has the reach we need. We continue on and grab some more food for healing, then find a room containing a Maxim Tomato (full heal) and the sword ability, but the beam serves us pretty well for now so we head to the next area. This has a few enemies trapped in tiny holes underground, so they can't reach Kirby but they might be able to attack through the wall. They can be swallowed too, but I'm happy with our abilities so we move on. The beam reaches another "bomb" block that creates a new route underground with more foes and enough food to fully heal us - we re-emerge at the surface, and quickly find aother hole leading down shortly after. This drops us into a large empty room and spawns a Maxim Tomato, so I'm expecting a miniboss - and sure enough we see Chef Kawasaki!

 

oefhzBc.jpg

I didn't take a screenshot here so enjoy this key art of Chef Kawasaki.

 

I don't know a whole lot about the chef enemies, but I know that the ability they give Kirby isn't bad. Unfortunately I don't get to know a lot about the enemy because he doesn't get an attack out before I deplete his life. I do grab the Cook ability from him, however - this sees Kirby magic a cooking pot out of nowhere; a nearby enemy will then get drawn into this pot, cooked by Kirby, and turned into a food item for health. Unfortunately it's a one-use ability, and we're near the end of the stage anyway, so instead I waste the ability, swallow a nearby Cutter foe so that I have a useful ability (short-range projectile blades) for the next stage, and use the exit. However, there's a little more to DynaBlade - each stage of this minigame ends with a short bonus round. Kirby enters a cannon and a gauge quickly builds up to 100% and resets, repeatedly. The aim is to hit a button on the controller when the gauge is high, because the cannon will blast him further, towards better bonuses. However, after the gauge builds to 100% it restarts from 0%, so if you're the slightest bit late the cannon won't blast you anywhere. Aaaaand I press it late, so no bonus for me. But still, I've got several stages of DynaBlade to try and get this right!

 

(E: also, the in-game save stores progress made on DynaBlade's map, so that's nice.)

 

Current status:
Game: DynaBlade
Score: 14'450
Ability: Cutter
Partner: Parasol Waddle Dee

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Cutter is still a great short-range projectile attack, so going into the next stage of DynaBlade I don't mind keeping it for the time being. This stage has a nice chilled theme with a funky laid-back beat, but it probably isn't my favourite DynaBlade stage theme... I use the Cutter ability to eliminate a few Parasol enemies and approach the front door of a big pink...castle? Maybe. We enter a series of small rooms at first; initially there's a standard sword-swinging enemy in the first room that doesn't cause a whole lot of trouble, but the exit here leads to another small room with a small gauntlet of around three enemies that share a "boss" lifebar. Honestly, the hitstun kind of trivialises this encounter, and their individual health pools are so low that I almost thought there were two enemies in this "boss" encounter when I went to make this post, but then I remembered the third. Defeating all of these foes grants us a door to the next area - I think this had an optional area upwards but I didn't float high enough to check it out; however, there is a wall blocking progress to the right which can be destroyed if you find and attack a nearby "bomb" block, which lets us continue.

 

In the next room there's a single Ninja enemy and also a platform we can fall through (during my first visit to the room I completely forgot that falling through certain platforms was a thing and spent a minute or two wondering what the purpose of the room was and trying to find some kind of hidden destructible wall or something - oh, and whilst doing all of this I lost Kirby's ability and his partner. Oops. I did get a Bomb ability again on my travels, however...) - through here leads to some water, a 1-up to be found if you swim downwards to the "surface", and some blocks that can be destroyed if you want to get to an alternative route back up and out (which is kind of pointless when you can just go back the way you came. I turn my Bomb ability into a partner, we exit and enter the room again to respawn the Ninja so that Kirby has an ability, we return to the previous room and find a destructible wall to the left which leads to another room with a small boss encounter, which kills Poppy Bros Jr. whilst Kirby got out unscathed. (I don't think this encounter needs to be done unless you need the abilities, so oops.) If we head upwards we can make progress again - I turn the Ninja ability into a helper so that Kirby has the Cutter ability available from a nearby foe, we bump into a few more enemies which bring Kirby's health down, but fortunately there are some food items nearby that restore life to Kirby. Going up a ladder, we can take out a couple more foes and enter a nearby door...

 

...to an auto-scroller! This segment sees you travelling from left to right and features destructible walls (which have to be destroyed so that nobody gets squashed by the scrolling), falling hazards and roaming enemies. It's a short segment, but the end goal (or rather, the bit that's actually tricky) is to attack a bunch of destructible blocks that are surrounding the warp star that transports Kirby and co. to the next area. What makes this awkward is that the Cutter ability we have attacks directly in front of Kirby, and some blocks directly to the left of the warp star are indestructible. Since the Cutter projectile travels directly forward, there's no way of getting past those indestructible blocks - the only other option is to go around, under, back and attack from the right (all whilst everything continues scrolling), but I don't even know if you'd have time to do this because I die before I can find out. On the next attempt, I grab two Cutter abilities (for Kirby and his partner) and just rush that shit. It turns out that you are supposed to go around and then back on yourself - I can't see any other way - and so we warp to the next area.

 

This is a fairly open area with minimal platforming and the opportunity to get a Wheel ability (roll along the ground through anything in your way) - there's a destructible wall nearby that leads to a room with a 1up and Maxim Tomato, and besides this there are just a few standard enemies we can roll through until we reach a miniboss - a hammer-wielding foe who I repeatedly drive through. Kirby's partner doesn't fare so well and ends up losing all of his life, so I turn the Wheel ability into a partner and grab the boss' Hammer ability once it's defeated. Besides being good for smashing enemies, there are also a few unique spots where the Hammer can be used to "activate" things - you'll sometimes see little stumpy bits of wood, and if you have the Hammer ability then they can be whacked into the ground, which may affect things elsewhere. In the next room, we can grab some food for health, and then we see one of the stumpy bits and can hammer it to reveal a door to three 1ups. After discovering this rewarding room, we can then finish the stage. Oh, and I messed up the cannon minigame at the end again. Next time!

 

Current status:
Game: DynaBlade
Score: 38'670
Ability: Hammer
Partner: Wheelie

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The following post is enhanced if you read it whilst listening to the adorably catchy Cocoa Cave theme, so I've added this at the end of the post.

 

I took a little break from updates to work on my progress in Yakuza (the less said about that the better), but now we're back in there. I feel pretty good about our current status since Kirby has an ability and a helper already - the only thing that kind of trips me up is that when you have Wheelie as a partner, Kirby can jump on top of it and ride it using a unique ability called Wheelie Rider. It's great for making quick progress through a stage, but sometimes I get a bit carried away and barrel into hazards or down death pits. About three seconds into the stage I accidentally use Wheelie Rider in the most non-threatening intro room ever - it only has one Fighter enemy and a door to the next area - so I just head through the door and immediately touch a spikey invincible enemy and take damage. At least Kirby and Wheelie are separated again. The Hammer ability has a nice dash attack where Kirby moves forward whilst spinning the hammer, and it's useful for making progress through the cave safely. We hammer through bomb blocks to detonate blocks in our way and eventually come to two doors - one door leads to progress, the other has a room of destructible blocks with a couple of enemies and some power-ups (a 1up and a Maxim Tomato.) I manage to snag both of them without taking damage, but when I leave as Wheelie Rider I immediately crash into a polar bear enemy. Nice. Moving on...

 

The next area has wind that blows from left to right - this pushes Kirby forward a little more than usual and results in the player having to take care with their running jumps, etc. This isn't that much of a problem because the Hammer ability's dash attack is so good, but there are a few moments where I move too fast and take damage from spike pits. For the most part it's generally okay and we make it to the next room in one piece. Following this, we have an area that houses a few Stone enemies we can ignore, a few slopes to walk down and an optional path to a room with bonus items. This room can catch players off-guard because it seals Kirby in one spot with only a bomb block for company - there are bonus items below him but they're all surrounded by destructible blocks, so you have to hit the bomb block (leaving the items suspended in mid-air) and then float to them without dropping to your death. I very nearly kill myself with an errant Wheelie Rider roll towards oblivion, but we're able to get out safely. Back in the main area we can follow a path up to grab some food items and restore health, then backtrack to the door and continue downwards. Deeper into this area are some lava blocks which we can carefully float over (up until my partner gets killed due to an errant jump) and then continue on our own to the next room - a blue and white snowy-themed area. Of course this would be right next to the lava room.

 

One interesting feature of Super Star is that if your partner is in its death animation and collides with another enemy that grants an ability, they will be revived as a new partner with that ability, so Wheelie ends up colliding with the snowman enemy Chilly, and we have a new partner with a replenished lifebar. Moving forward, we hammer through blocks and make fast progress with the... rails? ...that Kirby can ride to propel himself forwards. After timing jumps past a few cannon turret things, we can catch a ride on a warp star to the next area, returning to the trusty Hammer dash attack to take out enemies on the way to the next miniboss, Bugzzy. This insectoid miniboss fires out small adds that can be inhaled and fired back at him, but he also has a close range Back Drop attack that effectively suplexes anyone it catches. And I lose a life the first time this happens. Oops. As we restart, we can grab a Fighter ability for a useful close-range attack and turn it into the Knuckle Joe partner - there's also a Waddle Doo here that could have given Kirby the Beam ability, but I get too trigger happy and launch him out after swallowing him. As a result, I let Knuckle Joe do most of the work against Bugzzy until Knuckle Joe's life is depleted... but luckily during his death animation he collides with one of the adds and becomes Bugzzy in partner form. He also restores his lifebar to 100%, but still ends up killing himself again in his efforts to defeat the miniboss. We still win though, so I head through the door, try the bonus cannon thing again and actually get an extra life from it. So it's not all bad.

 

 

Current status:
Game: DynaBlade
Score: 56'820
Ability: (none)
Partner: (none)

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The next stage of DynaBlade has another theme that's all kinds of lovely ("Candy Mountain") but not quite up there with Cocoa Cave in my mind, so no YouTube embed today. After tossing away abilities and having partners determined to throw themselves into danger in my last update, we're going in with vanilla Kirby and no partner, but immediately in this stage we can grab a Fire ability for a short-range attack. We can destroy blocks that are holding up cannons so that the cannons fall harmlessly out of the way, and we can also grab another Fire ability along the way - so I turn my existing ability into the Burnin' Leo partner and then acquire it again for Kirby. As well as the short-range standing attack, the ability has a dash attack that essentially turns Kirby into a fireball, so it's a nice way to get around. We make our way through the nearby door to the next area and pass another wood stump (maybe useful if we had the Hammer ability), then I spy a couple of Waddle Doos above us, so I ditch my Fire ability in order to gain the Beam ability, and continue to climb upwards, blasting through destructible blocks so that we can move on, and taking care not to bump into foes as we make our way to the next door.

 

This room immediately greets us with the Bird enemy - I think its ability is decent but it's not what we need right now - and a destructible wall in front of a small body of water (in a neat touch, when you destroy this wall the area you were just in fills with water and you now swim through it rather than running and jumping.) We can pick up some food and an Invincible Candy here, so I try to make progress quickly, but don't get far. After destroying more bomb blocks that are in the way, we continue to climb... but Burnin' Leo bumps into one too many things along the way. After he dies I give up my Beam ability for a Waddle Doo partner, destroy some more obstructive walls (whilst my partner runs into enemies and takes more unnecessary damage), and enter the next room. This area has a cannon on the far right side, with a long fuse that leads underground and snakes around until it reaches a cannon. There's also another enemy with the Fire ability here, and the idea is to light the fuse and jump into the cannon so that it blasts you to the next area. It would be pretty straightforward if not for the fact that my partner depleted their remaining life bumping into the only enemy there, but luckily the next area is a "bonus room" of sorts, with two Maxim Tomatoes, a 1up and some additional food items for healing. So at least Kirby's healthy. I sacrifice my own Fire ability to bring back Burnin' Leo and enter the next door. Here we have an area that actually presents a little risk - as you drop in, one of the first things you see is a bomb block, and I instinctively destroy these to open up additional paths. Unfortunately, it ends up turning a lot of platforms into fiery blocks that can't be touched, so navigating this area just got harder. 

 

It's not too bad if you're careful with your jumping and floating, but it's the kind of area where you need to accept that your partner will take some hits... so when Burnin' Leo kills himself I don't even bother creating partners from any abilities I pick up (just the one Stone ability - letting you smash down on foes, turn invincible but stationary, and I think there's a dash attack?) until I exit the room (creating the partner Rocky.) We can gain up to two Mike abilities in the next area, each one giving Kirby three screen-clearing moves, but as I don't want to take too much damage moving forward (and as I don't want to rely on my partner clearing the path ahead) I end up using four of the six available smart bombs before I leave this area and head into the boss room. This sequence is essentially a "boss rush" of three miniboss encounters: Mr. Frosty (seen earlier in Spring Breeze), Bonkers (a miniboss who wields - and grants - the Hammer ability) and a pair of Poppy Bros Sr. foes. None of them have particularly large lifebars though; Mr. Frosty goes down after receiving damage from my two remaining Mike smart bombs (as this reverts Kirby back to having no abilities, I quickly swallow Mr. Frosty so that I at least have Ice) and Bonkers wastes time trying to attack Rocky whilst Rocky is invincible, effectively giving us a free kill (but I don't take the ability.) As for the pair of Poppy Bros Srs, one dances on the spot eating damage from my ice attack, and the other loses a ton of health after Rocky drops on him, so I can easily finish the job.

 

From here we leave the room and do the bonus cannon thing - I don't fill the bar all the way but I get pretty close and gain three extra lives for my long distance. :D Back on the map screen, Kirby heads to a mountain with a bird-like shadowy figure circling it, so we may be close to the end of this minigame...

 

Current status:
Game: DynaBlade
Score: 94'120
Ability: Ice
Partner: Rocky

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~DynaBlade: Finale~

 

I'm not entirely sure that the abilities we had at the end of the last stage will be suitable for the end of DynaBlade - from what I remember, this "stage" is just the fight against DynaBlade herself - there's no platforming to do or smaller enemies to defeat; it's just the boss encounter. However, I also get the feeling that if that were the case then they'd place a "boss fountain" at the start that offers a few abilities for Kirby and partner... and I'm right. The first screen is just a short walk to a door, and when you enter you're greeted with a bunch of raw "abilities" - just float into one with Kirby and he will take on that ability. And, of course, we can offer one to our partner also. The abilities we see here are Cutter, Beam, Sword and Fire - all fairly decent short-range attacks with pros and cons. Before I even fired this up today I had a plan to use Beam and Waddle Doo (Beam in partner form) because I think that's what I've used in the past. Beam is the short-range attack that arcs downwards in front of Kirby, and so it will be useful for hitting an airborne enemy such as DynaBlade. However, I have my doubts going into this now, and so I try equipping Kirby with Cutter and having Waddle Doo as a partner. When we're ready, we can hop onto a Warp Star and head to the showdown against DynaBlade. We land on flat ground on a single-screen area with no other platforms, and the blue skies quickly turn to purple as DynaBlade Mode 7s into view, screaming past the "camera" and coming down from above to battle.

 

Annoyingly, I mess up the very start of this - I forget which side she comes down on, and so she immediately deals damage by landing on us. I back away a bit and beginning attacking. DynaBlade can shoot what look like fireballs, and ram us with her head, and both of these things do a fair amount of damage to Kirby. She can also come down on us from above. The damage from all of these moves kind of catches me off-guard as my partner quickly dies and I don't last much longer before losing a life. Back at the room of abilities, I revert to my original plan - pick up a Beam ability, and take Waddle Doo with me. This ends up going a lot better - I still end up getting hit by her initial "landing" because I underestimate the size of her hitbox, but after we back up and perform continued Beam attacks she doesn't last long. She tries to get a few fireballs out but these can be destroyed by the beam attack, and the combination of her slow wind-up animations and the damage of Beam means that we don't see much else from her before she goes down.

 

Spinning through the air, she crashes to the ground (landing sort of upside-down) and Kirby walks forward. The screen scrolls along with him, revealing a nest of chirping chicks. Kirby winks at the camera and pushes the nest offscreen, and the scene fades to what looks like Green Greens and Whispy Woods’ realm. Kirby jumps up into Whispy's branches and sends fruit down towards the chicks, and then this transitions to a short scene with Kirby floating along as the chicks fly with him. Kirby ends up on a rock as he waves goodbye to the chicks, the scene freezes and turns sepia, and the words "to be CONTINUED" appear in the lower-right. With this, we're back to the main game selection screen - however, there's a pause as the tile for Revenge of MetaKnight flashes briefly and bursts into colour, indicating that it's now selectable. So I guess I only needed to complete those two in order in unlock Revenge of MetaKnight - yay! I'm very tempted to jump into that one next, because The Great Cave Offensive is quite an ordeal in comparison, but I'll think about it...

 

EDIT: it looks like Revenge of MetaKnight and The Great Cave Offensive have a four-star difficulty - compared to DynaBlade's three stars - so I can't even use that metric to decide - bah!

 

Final status for DynaBlade:
Score: 244'120
Ability: Beam
Partner: Waddle Doo

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On 01/11/2020 at 10:15, Qazimod said:

the main obstacles for me will be Milkyway Wishes, The Arena, and (depending on my screw-ups) The Great Cave Offensive

 

You know what, screw it - we're starting The Great Cave Offensive. These updates might be a bit more tricky because there aren't really "stages" as such; no levels with starts and ends. There are certain sequences that bookend the platforming, such as miniboss encounters and (I think) some kind of mine cart sequence, but it's generally portrayed as one long consistent environment. I wondered about how I would break up the various updates for this minigame, and then I remembered that there are save rooms you can enter at times, so they can (hopefully) serve as the bits between each update. Anyway, we can select The Great Cave Offensive from the main menu and get another description - "Get through the deadly cave while collecting hidden treasures" - and another difficulty rating; this time it's four stars. Sooo it's harder than the other games we've tried - perfect. As I start the game I'm offered another intro tutorial to show me how to play: "Find treasures throughout the cave. It's fun and exciting! You must find as many hidden treasures as you can!" It goes on to explain how to open treasure chests, how to look at your list of discovered treasures, and notes that some treasures are hidden in places. It also tells us that there are 60 treasures to find in total, so we have a secondary metric for our score.

 

We start by following a linear path to a door and then end up in a new environment where we can grab a Fighter ability and also our first treasure (Gold Medal, 10'000G). We quickly run into a Waddle Doo so I turn my ability into the Knuckle Joe partner and grab a Beam ability, then blast through a few enemies, revealing a door behind some blocks that were blasted away by my charge shot. From memory I know that this door leads to a single room with a treasure, so we grab it (Gold Coin, 1'000G) and leave. We continue along a fairly linear path but quickly see some things underground - a bomb block and another treasure. Above ground are three more bomb blocks, and the idea is to use the furthest block to create a path downwards, and use the nearest bomb block to remove an otherwise-indestructible wall in the way of the treasure. The middle bomb black creates an impassable wall of lava between Kirby and the treasure, but you'd never know this the first time. (In fact, I don't - I mess up the first time and have to kill myself to reset this area.) In my next attempt, I grab a Fighter ability and take out the two "correct" blocks so that I can grab the treasure (Whip, 6'800G) and move on through a door to the next area.

 

Here, we can grab the Bird ability for a flappy jump and a short projectile, so I create the Knuckle Joe partner, grab the ability, and take on a new challenge. A room with switches allows walls to slide up and allow progress, but they slide back down after a certain amount of time, so this is really just a test of your ability to move quickly. Luckily, attacks can "trigger" the switches without you having to stand on them, so we can stand between two switches, fire, turn and fire again. A further pair of switches can then be found - the first one we see has a longer "timer" but raises a more distant wall, so after pressing it you have to race forward and raise the second wall, advancing through both and getting the treasure (Crystal Ball, 200'000G). We can hit a bomb block to create a route out of here, and after I leave I try to look around for anything I missed but end up losing a life. On the way back I grab a Beam ability and a Knuckle Joe partner, and we come to a body of water we can swim through, with a small area containing food items for health and a treasure (Lucky Cat, 500G). From here there's a path up and a door - I take the path up but it just loops around to the start (and I lose my ability so I grab the Bird ability again.) The door brings us to another small platforming challenge - blocks above lava crumble if stepped on, and destroying a pillar elsewhere will allow a treasure to fall on one of the crumbling blocks, so the idea is to avoid making all of the blocks crumble, let the treasure fall on a remaining block, return and grab it. Despite this being one of the moments I was dreading, I nail this first time (Seiryu Sword, 142'000G) and move on.

 

We soon spot a bomb block underground that we can't reach with our abilities, so I move forward to grab a Cutter ability and use the drop attack on the bomb block so that we can get to the treasure (Screw Ball, 80'000G). Exploring around, a destructible block slightly below ground clears a path underground that lets us get to a Maxim Tomato, and another destructible block in a wall lets us get a treasure (Zebra Mask, 278'000G). A couple of doors are open to us now - the first one we take goes to another hammer-wielding miniboss and no way back, but I die shortly after defeating it, so I can get sent back and try the other door, which contains a save room! After saving I checked my treasure list and already found a gap in the list*, but I noticed there was a destructible block directly above the save room door - after grabbing a Beam ability I destroyed the block and found another treasure (Echigo Candy, 8'000G), so yay.

 

*one lifeline this minigame does give you is that your treasure list (available by pressing X) shows treasures in the order that you're expected to discover them, so any gaps give you very subtle clues about potentially-overlooked areas.

 

Current status:
Game: The Great Cave Offensive
Score: 726'300G (9/60 treasures)
Ability: (none)
Partner: (none)

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Leaving the save room I take out some enemies and grab a Beam ability before turning it into a partner and getting a Cutter ability for myself. After doing laps around the area we were just in and making sure I haven't missed anything, I head to the exit of this area and take out the Bonkers miniboss, then go to the upper left of the area to find a DKC-style cannon which I can use to bust through a wall and get some food and a treasure (Star Stone, 82'100G.) I continue to the right and down some ladders and can break a block to let out some roaming enemies and get to a treasure (Beast's Fang, 7'300G.) I head upwards and find food items for health, and then as my partner dies I create Sir Kibble from my own ability and grab the Plasma ability for useful projectiles. Satisfied that there's nothing else in this area, I move on. A more simple hidden treasure is found later on - it rests above three rows of blocks in a closed well, but on the outside of the well are bomb blocks that destroy these rows and let it fall (Bandana, 1'990G.) I try to make my way to the door but accidentally swallow two foes - as mentioned in my update on the 7th, this causes a game of "ability roulette", but I stop the reel on the joke entry that insta-kills Kirby. Nice. Back at the door we find a boss fountain with health and abilities (Jet, Mirror and Sword) - I know that there's an area below here I couldn't get to without cutting a rope and allowing a suspended platform to drop, so I use the Sword ability to do this, find a treasure (Springtime, 250'000G.), then go back.

 

The door leads to Fatty Whale, a miniboss that crashes into Kirby to deal damage and also sends rocks down from the sky. After a few failed attempts I eventually take Jet in (a dash attack that you charge up) and just went from side to side dealing damage to Fatty. From here we can catch a short mine cart ride to the next zone - the "Crystal Area". This place has diamonds in the background and plenty of swimming; there's a treasure at the foot of the opening area (Dime, 10G) but the actual door for progress leads to a "hub" of four more doors - one save and three sub-areas. I enter the far-left door to a watery area and can hit a switch to blow a hole in the wall and grab a treasure (Goblet, 800G), but we left a trickier treasure behind (before entering the "hub") and I'll return to it later. The sub-area from the middle door is more swimming, this time against strong currents; but first I find treasure (Bucket, 200G) and food for health. By moving to the upper-right we can escape the water and are tasked with navigating moving platforms that are above spikes. The Yoyo ability we picked up on the way lets us attack destructible blocks to get to treasure (Summertime, 250'000G) but eventually we die after taking too many hits. I return to the left door's sub-area and find a switch that I can't get to because of a wall, but by picking up a Crash (smart bomb) ability from a nearby enemy I can blast the switch through the wall, opening the way to treasure (Brass Knuckle, 20'000G.) Further to the left is a treasure that's just out in the open (Amber Rose, 22100G), and by hitting a nearby bomb block we can create a path to a room that has two more treasures (Fish Fossil, 8'250G; Beast Fossil, 24'220G.)

 

Leaving this room and heading up brings us to a Poppy Bros Sr. miniboss - defeating him makes a treasure fall from above (Nunchuks, 55'480G), and after using his body to enable a combination of Bomb Kirby with a Poppy Bros Jr. partner, we move onward and make a few attempts at getting a trickier treasure (Saucepan, 10G) - it's easy enough to find if you get to an underwater switch, but it falls down and offscren so you have to mash Up on the d-pad as it falls past Kirby in the hope that you interact with it. After doing a few laps around areas I've covered, I check out the middle door's sub area and grab a trickier treasure (100 dollar coin, 10'000G) - basically for this one you have to go around to the right of the area, enter a current that pushes you to the left, and mash Up on the d-pad as you pass the treasure. With this done, I go and save. Before I finish I take a quick look at the "hub"'s lower-right door - this has more conventional platforming and an easier treasure (Ancient Gem, 68'000G) if you're happy navigating spiked floors and ceilings, as well as a bomb block that clears a path to treasure (Dud, 30G) and a tricky "run through a hallway of spiked ceilings and floors whilst wind pushes you back" sequence if you want another treasure (Truth Mirror, 500'000G) and some breakable blocks in the lower-left that seem to be in an enclosed space. This seems a bit too suspicious so I break all of them and find treasure (Falcon Helmet, 41'000G) before heading back to save. There is still a gap between the Dime and the Goblet in my treasure list, which I think is the harder one I said I'd go back for, but maybe I'll skip it. I dunno. I think I need to come back to the underwater "Crystal" area with an ability that breaks blocks, so I might see what I can do in-between updates.

 

EDIT: doh! I forgot that vanilla Kirby can break the blocks in that area with his default underwater attack, so I've got the treasure (Glass Slippers, 120'000G) now. I think there's more of the hub's "lower-right door" area to explore later - because from what I recall I've got to get to a door in the upper-right of the area, take on a boss, escape this "hub" and get on another mine cart - but we'll see.

 

Current status:
Game: The Great Cave Offensive
Score: 2'187'790G (29/60 treasures)
Ability: (none)
Partner: (none)

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From the save room, I head out to the "hub" and enter the lower-right door. before making it to the next boss fountain. This has the Fighter, Bird and Jet abilities. So I go in with Bird and Knuckle Joe to face another boss - the "Computer Virus." This is a battle where a series of blue text windows pop up around the background and show RPG style battle messages - "Slime appears! Kirby & co. attack! 18 damage points given to Slime!" - as well as HP counters for the enemies. It's a clever framing for what is a simple endurance run of enemy encounters, and some ability pickups appear between battles so I take the opportunity to grab the Plasma ability - this lets you charge attacks by moving back and forth rapidly, so it's a great damage dealer. When the gauntlet is over, the battle messages display "Kirby & Co. defeat all enemies! You earned 142 experience points. You earned 2 Happy Smile points! You earned 3 Tenderness points! You earned 4 Fever points! You earned 2 Courage points! You earned 2 Exam score points! You earned 2 Friendship points!" Ahem. From here we can hop onto another mine cart to the next area - a large castle with multiple entrances. The first door we find is a mine cart that allows us to backtrack, so we ignore this for now. A door on the far right serves as a save point, so we save and then head to the middle door on the ground floor of the castle. 

 

This is a standard room full of cannons, enemies and health items and paths to the left and right. It's mostly ordinary save for a door at the very top holding a treasure (Star Tiara, 408'200G) We go left and enter a door to a single room with bomb blocks, a stump, and a door; we can't do anything with this room until we have a hammer ability, so yay. We exit the room and go right to find a door to a green-hued area with Parasol and Cutter enemies. Getting through here isn't too hard, but grabbing a Parasol ability is worthwhile - in the next area, we have to run left and jump up "steps" whilst avoiding things falling to the ground. As we go left we see an inaccessible treasure under where we're standing, so that's something to keep in mind. At the far left of this passage is a door and a bomb block, so I create a path downwards. After running past some cannons and descending further we find a treasure (Unicorn's Horn, 80'300G), but our treasure list now shows a long gap of around four treasures, so I guess I wasn't supposed to go to this door first. I exit the cannon room and proceed to a miniboss fight - here, we face Bonkers, but there is a bomb block in this room that can destroy the floor. This would instantly kill the miniboss, but once the boss is down you find a switch that lets a treasure drop from above - if there's no floor, you aren't getting that treasure. We have to attempt this three times, but eventually I defeat Bonkers without destroying the floor (taking his Hammer ability), and get the treasure (Autumntime, 250'000G.) Moving on we find a new door that leads to a gauntlet of regular enemies with a shared lifebar - we take these out and then move to the next area.

 

Here there's an easy treasure we can get if we destroy a bomb block (Rice Bowl, 50G) but I need to keep the Hammer for now. This room is full of firey blocks that hurt us, bomb blocks and Parasol enemies. I can grab a treasure here (Tut's Mask, 160'000G) and also find an early exit to the front of the castle, so I re-enter the middle ground floor, hit the stump and enter a new area where we can descend a lift to an area with Fire enemies and two more doors. The first door leads to an easy boss (with the Suplex ability) that drops some health and treasure (Turtle Shell, 800G), and then on to a bomb block and eventually another treasure (Sword, 325'000G). We can progress on to a small swimming area with a current that pulls Kirby to the left past a treasure. It's another "mash up as you pass the chest" bit", but the water is suspended in midair, so if you swim too low you fall to your death. I ended up getting it (Warrior Shield, 50'000G) after a few attempts; it's all about moving down and left just enough on the D-Pad without flying past the treasure or killing yourself, but it took several laps around the area. And then I had to go back outside to save, so I'll need to go back in another time...

 

EDIT: okay, I mentioned "two more doors" in the above paragraph; the other door leads directly to the Warrior Shield room. So am I done here? I think I can go back to the upper-middle room with the firey blocks and get the treasures beyond there (through the left door)...

 

Current status:
Game: The Great Cave Offensive
Score: 3'462'140G (37/60 treasures)
Ability: Fire
Partner: Bonkers

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Leaving the save room, I go to the upper-middle door at the front of the castle (with all of the firey blocks), head to an exit at the left that leads outside, and make my way up an area outside of the main castle. The first door here leads to a corridor of wind where Kirby is blown to the left - there's treasure at the end here, but there are also Sleep abilities in item form. The Sleep ability forces Kirby to take a nap on the spot, and then the ability is gone... and that's actually really bad in this corridor. Any effort to move right and fight the wind is nullified when you get sent to sleep, so you have to jump around the pickups whilst fighting the wind to make it to a chest (Mr. Saturn, 120'000G). Leaving this room, I grab a Stone ability and turn it into a partner, grab a Bomb ability for Kirby and ascend this outdoor area. On the way we can grab a treasure found in a small gap in a wall (Armor, 212'000G) and ultimately find three different exits - one where we are, one in the upper-left and one in the upper-right. Eep. The one where we are leads to a starry backdrop with springs and spiked balls that damage us, but it has food items for health, a Maxim Tomato (100% heal) and a treasure. (Treasure Box, 100'000G). The one in the upper-left is a death room - it quickly scrolls the screen from right to left and there's an impassable wall immediately to the right of Kirby. However, there's also a treasure in here, so you have to enter, notice the treasure, leave before you die, compose yourself and make a plan to rush in there and grab it (Mannequin, 3'000G). The door in the upper-right leads to a whole new area with Mirror enemies, something that looks like a boss fountain, and a breakable wall that leads to an underwater section. There are breakable underwater blocks here, but we can't break them with our current abilities.

 

Another door here leads to a chameleon miniboss who bounds around the screen, fires projectiles and turns invisible, but the boss fountain before the miniboss provided a Plasma ability, which made short work of this encounter. Beyond the miniboss is a new room with some DKC-style cannons that fire Kirby in a given direction, and this has three exits. The first door we try goes to a room where you have to jump on a switch and then race to the top to enter a door that's just been opened - it will close after a few seconds. Successfully getting through the door nets you a treasure (Model Ship, 800'000G.) Another door we try leads to a dark area where we can light candles to show more of the environment, and doing so reveals a very missable door which leads to another treasure (Sun Ring, 800'000G.) I head back to the front and save again, go back through the fire area and the outdoor area, grab a Stone ability, go and save, then go back to the underwater room from before. By using the Stone ability to drop into the water at speed, we can break the previously-unbreakable blocks and open the way to a small room with two more exits and a treasure (Gold Crown, 528'000G). The two exits lead to what essentially stopped this update sooner than I'd planned. They both go to a single room where a platform is suspended by a rope and blocks the way down to a small area with a stump. This stump is in a wall that blocks the way to a bomb block and a door. And that door obviously leads to progress of some kind, but I need completely different things before I get here. I need to:

 

  • Find a Ninja (or Cutter?) ability, turn it into a partner, and grab a Stone ability for Kirby
  • Take them all the way to this point, get the partner to cut the rope and get Kirby to hit the stump
  • Head through the door to the next area and get whatever's there

 

I originally ended this post here whilst I figured all of this out myself, but it wasn't too tricky. Reviewing some of my offline notes I found that one of the fiery block areas leads to an easy source for Cutter and Stone abilities, so I "simply" had to get back there, get the abilities and keep hanging on to them until I return to the room. We make it back with me as Stone Kirby and the partner as Sir Kibble (the Cutter ability in partner form) - Sir Kibble cuts the rope holding the platform up, and I smash the stump, and we enter the door. This leads to a whole new area with stationary spikey enemies, a stationary laser-toting enemy, collectible rock and mirror abilities and - if you can navigate past the spikey enemies, a single treasure. I end up grabbing the mirror ability, ducking behind a wall and firing it "through" the wall, as it reflects the attacks of the laser-toting foe, eliminating it easily. From there, it's not too hard to get the treasure (King's Cape, 508'000G) and stumble our way back to the save point at the front. I think it's almost time for our next minecart ride out of here...

 

Current status:
Game: The Great Cave Offensive
Score: 6'533'140G (45/60 treasures)
Ability: (none)
Partner: (none)

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Happy with my success, I ran to the left door on the outside of the tower, hopped on a minecart and entered a door to the next area. Here, there's a door to the left and a switch in the middle of the room - the switch makes a bunch of enemies burst from a hole, but you can enter the hole and get a treasure (Wintertime, 250'000G) before leaving again. We can then go to the door on the left where we'll find an interesting challenge. Below Kirby and partner are strong currents and platforms to drop down - however, one current blows them left and away from an open route to the right (where I'm willing to bet there's treasure.) There are three "collectible" abilities here too - Jet, Bird and Ninja - and it took me a little while to get this one, but I sort of found a solution.

 

Ninja has a falling attack which is like a divekick, and it has just enough horizontal momentum to make it to the right and "clear" the current. The idea is to hold down (and keep it held), then hold the attack button as soon as you start to drop through the platform.  Sometimes it'll register as being held too early and you'll get the standing attack instead (and teleport back on top of the platform), but if you do it correctly the divekick will ignore the wind resistance and send Kirby toward the treasure. Doing this correctly gets us a Maxim Tomato and the treasure (Katana, 990'000G.) There's also a new exit in this area, so we can move onward. We end up in a "hub" with three doors below, one save room door and the door we just came from. The left door below leads to a short scrolling segment with a bridge over water (where we can drop through a discoloured block and swim down to grab treasure (Charm, 8'000G)) and a few cannons - again, if we can light a fuse, we can hop into a cannon and end up somewhere new. We can grab a Jet ability here, which should work, but there are three cannons and three fuses. I try the left cannon first but end up in a bit of an open area and it's pretty intimidating so I double-back to see if the middle cannon is any better. This time we end up in a simple single-screen area where we find one treasure we can force to drop down with bomb blocks (Xmas Tree, 40'000G.) Meanwhile, the right cannon appears to self-destruct, so I guess we’re taking the left cannon. We have to destroy some blocks that are obstructing the fuse to the cannon, but we can swallow a Jet enemy, charge the ability and double jump to send a little destructive burst downwards that breaks the block and lets the spark travel down the whole fuse.

 

The cannon leads us to an area in the clouds - as we head upwards we spot a door on the left and the Wing ability in item form. The door leads to a simple room with two switches - above we can see a treasure and two enemies that are trapped in blocks. I try to bring up the treasure list and accidentally fire a projectile at the right-hand switch, but this makes the treasure drop down (Kong's Barrel, 1'500G), so yay? I think that's it for this room so we head back to the cloudy area and go to another door we can see above and to the right. This is an easy room where platforms go around in a circle but move between lots of spikes - if you sneak your way through the gaps and don't move about too much, you'll be led to a treasure (Ramia's Scale, 12'800G.) We go back to the cloudy area and pass through some starry areas that lead to a Plasma ability, some health and a Maxim Tomato. Following more star paths (in a sort of U-turn direction) brings us to a door over on the left - this has a treasure above us on a platform we can't reach without having an upward attack (to break our way through) so I leave this for now. Above the Plasma ability is a door to a new zone where we can grab a Wheel ability - by turning it into a partner and using the Wheelie Rider ability (see my November 15 update) we now have the aforementioned upward attack, so we can headbonk the block that was in the way and grab the treasure (Shiny Bamboo, 600'000G.)

 

I go back and grab the wheel ability so that we both have it, but I stay in this zone because I'll need the ability here. By rolling along the ground at speed we can hit a switch to open a distant door - squeezing through it before it closes to get a treasure (Tire, 1'100G.) That's the only thing here for us, so I head back to the clouds and to a door in the lower-middle area that leads to another starry location with an easy chest right in front of us (Spirit Charm, 78'500G.) I think we're done with the cloudy area, so we can finally use the nearby warp star to move on. We end up back in the hub with the left door more or less explored. The middle door leads to another "don't cut ropes that make platforms fall and block your progress" challenge but it's very self-contained and eventually we get the treasure there (Platinum Ring, 40'000G) - another door here leads to a simple "drop down but don't land on springs that bounce you up" sequence that rewards us with more treasure (Triforce, 800'000G) but beyond here is a boss fountain, so I want to go back and check the right door in the central hub before heading into what might be hard progress.

 

Current status:
Game: The Great Cave Offensive
Score: 9'355'040G (56/60 treasures)
Ability: (none)
Partner: (none)

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~The Great Cave Offensive: Finale~

aka. Awkward Racist Boss Finale

 

Leaving the save room, I head back to the "hub" and enter the lower-right door - this has a few roaming enemies, more DKC-style cannons that Kirby can jump into before launching himself in a given direction, and some walls we can break through with said cannons. I use the cannons to move around this room until I get to a cannon near the lower-left which can blast me towards a door. I want to finish exploring the cannon room first though, so I look around and find a Maxim Tomato in the upper-right corner and some treasure (Pegasus Wing, 42'800G) in the lower-right corner. I go back to the aforementioned door and enter - here we find a few sloped surfaces with enemies roaming around - I grab a Wheel ability, turn it into a partner, leave the area and re-enter to spawn it again, then grab the ability for myself. Moving forward we run into the Bugzzy miniboss again - the battle is a bit messy but we can pretty much roll back and forth repeatedly as we go through him and cause damage. Defeating Bugzzy lets us grab a treasure (Raccoon Doll, 8'150G) and swallow Bugzzy so that Kirby has the Suplex ability. However, our partner ends up dying so I give the ability to him. Moving on, we enter a new room with swimming areas that go nowhere, a Cutter ability we can grab and another treasure - this one's sealed under a bunch of blocks, and those blocks are in a square formation around several enemies. However, there's a bomb block that can destroy the blocks, so we just have to use that, deal with the enemies and grab the treasure (Shell Whistle, 82'000G). For those keeping count, we're now at 59 of 60 treasures. The large cluster of enemies depletes the health of our Bugzzy partner so I create a Sir Kibble partner from my Cutter ability, and swallow another nearby Cutter enemy for Kirby.

 

After doing more swimming and working through enemies we see a treasure chest - the last one. Luckily, it's in a situation we've seen before: there's a wall between us and a small room that contains the chest, and said room also contains the switch that would lift the wall. However, a bomb enemy - which can offer the "Crash" smart-bomb-style ability -  is roaming on a platform just above the room. In my November 23rd update, I mentioned that the explosion from this single-use smart bomb can activate switches as long as those switches are caught in the blast radius (and the blast doesn't care about walls; as long as it's onscreen, it will be triggered.) Assuming that the Crash ability might not be useable underwater, I stand on a platform above the water but make sure that the switch is still onscreen, and use the Crash ability - this triggers the switch, but I was a bit too late getting through the gate. Thankfully, the bomb enemy comes back if I walk away and then return; this time, I use it as I'm falling toward the water, and this affords me enough time to get in and grab the last treasure (Orihalcon, 512'000G). Our score now reads 9'999'990G so for all intents and purposes we're done - I find a warp star that brings us back to the hub, then I save and head on to the boss fountain I mentioned at the end of my previous update. Here, we can grab an Ice, Bomb or Parasol ability for Kirby and his partner, so I try going in with the Bomb ability and Poppy Bros. Jr (Bomb in partner form.) The door leads to the boss of this area, "Wham Bam Rock". I'm not sure if I should post an image of him here :lol: - just open a private browser window and google him to find out why he got a more muted redesign in other Kirby games...

 

In the battle itself, he makes his rock-based hands materialise in and out of existence as they perform attacks, slamming down on us, crushing us in their "palms" and swiping us from offscreen. He can also make small stones come down from above which damage us, not unlike the Fatty Whale miniboss. At first I try and rush him down with bombs but it's hard to know where the hands will come from and we die. In my next attempt I go in with Parasol and the Poppy Bros. Jr partner, in the hope that I'll be protected when the rocks fall from above. I don't fare much better, but I get much closer than before so I run with this setup a second time and eventually win. I run to the left and find another door to go through; here, I find a Maxim Tomato and a minecart waiting for me - the minecart takes me to a couple of lifts that go up and out of this area. After the screen transition I end up in a small hole; I can float up and head left to find the starting area of this minigame, and after I catch a nearby warp star the game is complete. We see Kirby flying out to the surface and into the sky, then as we see him floating above the world we get a rundown of all the treasures we found on the way. Oh, and some final stats: "Treasures found: 60/60; Total score: 9'999'990G". We then get a "Congratulations" screen and are thrown back to the minigame selection screen.

 

Looking at it now, I don't think this minigame is as hard as I once thought it was - a lot of the "challenges" are self-contained and so it's easy to retry things. However, there are a lot of sequences that require you to mess up and then go back with prior knowledge. It would be cool if there was an easier way to "reset" the area sometimes, rather than rebooting the game or going all the way out and then back, and there are a few sequences where you have to do a lot of preparation to even attempt to get a treasure (King's Cape) or where you miss your chance to get something and end up doing a bunch of things just to get back to where you were (Autumntime, Warrior Shield.) So it can feel a bit time-wastey. Anyway, this was one of the minigames that I called out in the OP as something that would end up being a problem, so yay! I'd hope that Revenge of MetaKnight provides a bit of relief after all of this...

 

Final status for The Great Cave Offensive:
Score: 9'999'990G (60/60 treasures)
Ability: Parasol
Partner: (none)

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220px-Meta_Knight_-_Kirby_Fighters_2.png

 

When we finished Spring Breeze and DynaBlade, the main game selection screen took a moment to make Revenge of MetaKnight selectable, but completing The Great Cave Offensive hasn't really unlocked any new minigames, so I feel like we have to play this if we want to get around to Milkyway Wishes (and anything else that might be beyond that - again, I forget how the last few unlocks go down.) Before moving on, I take one last look at The Great Cave Offensive to make sure it's updated to be "complete" (e.g. the description screen for the minigame has a little rosette), and then I select Revenge of MetaKnight. Revenge of MetaKnight is probably one of the most conventional minigames available here - the minigame has the following description - "Save Dream Land! Defeat Meta-Knight and his giant warship Halberd!" - and another difficulty rating of four stars, joining The Great Cave Offensive as the hardest minigame so far.

 

Unusually, this one doesn't have any kind of "how to play" tutorial like Spring Breeze, DynaBlade and The Great Cave Offensive, but... okay, it's not that unusual. For starters, I don't think this minigame has any radically new gameplay features (aside from maybe the "time attack" style format of racing against the clock? Which, admittedly, is addressed in the description; the placeholder high score for a first-time player is a "Top Time" of 99999) but also... well, anyone who's unlocked this has already played similar minigames in order to unlock it, so I guess they think that players don't need to be tutored on systems that Revenge of MetaKnight will be revisiting. The game starts with the camera panning up from the deck of a battleship to the horizon, where Kirby is closing in via a Warp Star. Dialogue boxes appear below, as the enemies consult with "Sir Meta-Knight" and ultimately scramble to defend the ship. Kirby then zooms into view on his Warp Star, taking out multiple foes along the way and coming down to land. On the way down I spotted an enemy with the Beam ability so I quickly grab this and find another one so that I have a Waddle Doo partner. We run to the right and step on a switch that raises a distant gate - it's another timed switch run but nothing nearly as harsh as the gates in The Great Cave Offensive, so we slip through and enter a nearby door.

 

The enemies exchange more dialogue, noting that we're "in the rocket valve!" and deciding to "Release Heavy Lobster!" in order to slow us down. (At least when the minibosses are named in dialogue scenes it saves me having to look up their names in a wiki.) We take out a few regular enemies and have to use several lifts to descend downward, but everything's nice and linear, and we quickly arrive at a door. As the new scene fades in, I hear the familiar boss theme used in other Kirby Super Star minigames, but when we emerge in the next area we first get more snippets of dialogue from the enemy forces. "Kirby's behind the nozzle! Fix him!" Much like the end of my DynaBlade playthrough, this encounter starts with me not knowing where "Heavy Lobster" will come from, only to find that it drops right on top of Kirby and Waddle Doo, immediately damaging us. It runs to the other side of the screen, and turns to face us, but we don't really get very far as the enemies send a command for the ship to take off. "Prepare to take off! Blow Kirby Away!" "OK! Main engine ignition!" "Take off!"

 

As the scene fades to white there's the sound of a jet engine or something - Kirby and Waddle Doo immediately get flung to the right and offscreen, and then back to the left. That said, Heavy Lobster doesn't fare much better as it looks like he's breaking up into pieces as he is also thrown across the screen. The scene fades to black and then we get a zoomed-out view of the action; Kirby and his partner ended up getting launched into the sea or something, and the ship preparing to take off. This zoomed-out sequence is only about four seconds long, as we're quickly greeted with the next area. The enemies continue to chatter: "Kirby's been blown to the ocean!" but I decide to suspend the game here. I don't know if this has much of a save system like The Great Cave Offensive did, so I guess I'll just use these scenes between boss battles as a natural "stopping point" of sorts. Anyway, it's already a lot less daunting than TGCO, although it does have a four-star difficulty and we have only just started, so I imagine things will get more daunting soon enough... :P 

 

Current status:
Game: Revenge of MetaKnight
Score: 37'900
Ability: Beam
Partner: Waddle Doo

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On 03/12/2020 at 18:59, Qazimod said:

The enemies continue to chatter: "Kirby's been blown to the ocean!" but I decide to suspend the game here.

 

There was actually more to that conversation between the enemies - I just happened to cut it off early. Expect me to do that during this minigame because I won't know how long the dialogue is going to be until after the fact. Anyway, the enemies continue to talk to one another: "Kirby's been blown to the ocean!" "That was sure close." "I'll conquer Dream Land with the Halberd! Our first target... Grape Garden!" Uh, yeah, despite the cutscene that showed Kirby being launched into the ocean, the next stage starts with us back on dry land, so it's all good. We head forward over bridges that collapse when walked over, past a few enemies and across platforms that are above a continuous body of water - occasionally we hit a wall when above water so we have to dive down to find a way forward, and I manage to move on without too much trouble... although Waddle Doo is a bit careless and so I ditch him in favour of Poppy Bros. Jr. As he spawns into existence, we move forward and trigger a miniboss encounter with Iron Mam (or Iron Mom; either is acceptable according to wikis.) She jumps around and damages Kirby by colliding with him or throwing punches, but in our encounter she doesn't really do a whole lot. Again, my partner is rubbish at avoiding damage so I give up the beam ability to create a Waddle Doo, and absorb Iron Mam to get the Fighter ability for myself. Eventually this area stops scrolling and so we have to enter the nearby door.

 

As we emerge in the next area we find bombs flying at us from offscreen and Waddle Doo inevitably dies, but I navigate around all of this. We come to another swimming section and some stationary enemies on the surface that we can ignore - we pass a Bomb enemy but it's too tricky to stop floating and try to inhale it whilst dropping, so I let it disappear offscreen. If I swim down I can destroy a bomb block to open a path to the next bit of the swimming area - here, it looks like there are boxes "cut out" of the water - designated areas that you fall through instead of swimming through - but they don't cause a lot of trouble and sometimes have food items that can be collected for health. Eventually we make it to the door that leads to the next area - a swimming-based auto-scroller. If you recall my adventures in DynaBlade you'll know that I'm not always that good with auto-scroller sequences and will often trap myself, get myself squashed, or do anything but make it through safely. This particular sequence starts off by being gentle - you more or less follow a straight "tunnel" with a few slopes, and then it starts scrolling up. On the way up, you get some indestructible cannons shooting at you, but they're easy to avoid, and once the screen is done with scrolling up, it carries on scrolling forward. Things get a bit more dicey when you meet a wall of bomb blocks that you have to destroy before getting squashed (luckily the Fighter ability has a great short-range horizontal attack), a small spike pit to jump over and another small bomb block wall, but we make it to the door at the end. I don't bother getting a new partner during any of this, but when we enter the next area we find that it doesn't matter anyway...

 

...as we end up in a boss fountain room! Here, there are Parasol, Bird and Bomb abilities along with a Maxim Tomato (but we already have full health), so I turn my existing Fighter ability into the Knuckle Joe partner, grab a bomb ability, and enter the door. As the boss battle music starts, the surrounding scenery of the boss area looks somewhat familiar, and dropping down confirms it - this is the area where you fought Whispy Woods in Spring Breeze - again, we drop down and begin tossing bombs at Whispy, taking him out before he's even able to get an attack out. However, this encounter isn't over - part of the ground beneath us disappears and we enter a new "room" where we're stuck between two Whispy Woods tree bosses (don't ask me how trees exist underneath other trees) - these two share the boss lifebar, so I begin by tossing bombs at the one on the left, and then deal with the other one afterwards. Honestly, aside from Knuckle Joe jumping into the bosses like an idiot, there isn't a massive threat here - Kirby takes a hit near the end from something that drops from above (and has to quickly reclaim his Bomb ability), but otherwise there aren't a lot of attacks that trouble us. Once the boss is defeated, a warp star appears - as we hop on, there's more dialogue from the enemy: "Kirby is flying back toward us!" "Main cannon's ready. Shall we blast him?" "All right. Shoot him!" Once again, the scene fades out and we get the zoomed-out world view from before - we see the enemy vessel blast Kirby and send the warp star off course, and we end up in the next area. More dialogue - "We got him! He fell into the forest" - suggests that we're at the next stage, so I suspend the game here.

 

Current status:
Game: Revenge of MetaKnight
Score: 87'000
Ability: Bomb
Partner: Knuckle Joe

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The enemy dialogue continues - "We got him! He fell into the forest." "Good. He will never catch up." "Are you sure?" No answer is given as we're thrown back into gameplay. We start on the right side of the screen and have to progress by moving from right to left-  there aren't really many platforms here so for now we're just bombing and fighting our way through ground-based enemies. There are a few flying foes but I ignore them whilst Knuckle Joe jumps into them and takes damage because he's not too clever. Eventually the screen stops scrolling to the left and we reach a door to the next area - this is an "interior" area where you have to move vertically, destroying bomb blocks that get rid of the walls that are above you, and then moving up. However, there are enemies roaming around on the platforms, so it's better to take care of the ones you can reach before destroying the next bomb block. On the way up we see a door we can go through, but it's not at the top of this area - we can keep ascending to get around to the right and fall down to another door. We go through this one and end up outside, where we move from left to right and find a 1-up as well as some more abilities in item form - Sword, Cutter, and Fighter. You can't move forward from here, so it's just a nice optional area you can stumble across. I return to the previous area so that I can ascend even further until the screen stops scrolling up and we find a door in the top-right corner.

 

We emerge in an area that starts on the right and scrolls left - there are more abilities in item form here (Ice and Cutter) and this time I decide to grab a Cutter ability for Kirby. In actual fact, this one was a boss fountain of sorts - the screen stops scrolling as we have a miniboss encounter against two Bonkers enemies that spawn either side of us, trapping us in the middle. Luckily, they don't do a whole lot - no, really; they just seem to stand around for most of the encounter - and once they're dealt with I go back and grab the Ice ability, give it to my partner (turning him into the partner Chilly) and take another Cutter ability for myself. We destroy a couple of bomb blocks, collect some health items and then come to a split path - in one direction is a stump that could have been hit with the Hammer ability and opened up a path to a Maxim Tomato and a 1-up, but we didn't bother obtaining Bonkers' ability. Oops. In the other direction is hard progress - there are some regular enemies we can take out, a few bomb blocks that create a path forward, and a door that leads to the next area.

 

This area's quite flat and doesn't have a lot of platforming; there are some slopes and drops that suggest we could have gone in here with a wheel ability, but it's all good. When we're unable to keep going right, I drop down and find a spring that sends us up to a higher platform; this leads back to the left to some blocks that bridge a path over lava and some suspicious bomb blocks. I ignore the first one but destroy the second - sure enough, the blocks below us disappear and Chilly takes damage and dies. Having taken a few hits myself I just decide to leg it towards the next available enemy/ability (Sword, as it happens) and luckily I find another obtainable Sword ability for a partner, as well as some food items for health. We enter a door to the next area and immediately face an enemy with the Fire ability who blasts me with his short-range attack before I even know what's happening. Oops. I back away from him to a nearby spring and find two cannons; the nearest has a detonator we can use to light the fuse, but it's a trap - the nearest cannon simply blows up and we receive more damage. It turns out I needed to grab the Fire ability and light the fuse of the cannon without the detonator, but I die on my way back to the fuses. Eventually we prime the correct cannon and enter it - we're blasted to a single-screen area where we find... DynaBlade? Yeah - the winged boss of the DynaBlade minigame is just chilling here! It cuts to another zoomed-out view of the world where we see Kirby and partner escape this place by riding DynaBlade, but she only makes it so far; we crash-land in the next area and land on the deck of an enemy vessel...

 

Current status:
Game: Revenge of MetaKnight
Score: 111'700
Ability: Fire
Partner: Burnin' Leo

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Further enemy dialogue suggests that our opponents are pretty pleased with themselves - "We shot down Dyna Blade!" "Look! Kirby's reached the deck." "Remain calm. Let's come up with a plan." "All soldiers! Get Kirby. Now!" And with this, we're back in control. From the deck there isn't much platforming to begin with; we're just moving forward. My partner charges forward and damages himself, whilst I float over an invincible enemy safely... only to get caught by surprise when a Rocky enemy (the guy who gives us the Stone ability) drops down from offscreen and makes Kirby lose the fire ability. I push forward past Stone and Bomb enemies until I see a Cutter enemy I can swallow for a better ranged attack... although the enemy gets away. As I move forward I spot an area with bricks that break apart when stood on, and I lose a life thinking that I'm supposed to use them to go down somewhere, when in fact it's a death drop. Oops. Next time around I go in with Bomb and Stone abilities, fly over the death drop, take out a few more enemies and make it to another door. In the next area, we drop down into another "boss encounter" which consists of numerous enemies that share one lifebar. Before the battle, there's a bit of dialogue: "Kirby! Got ya!" "Now you get a taste of our power." "Fight!" The first attempt doesn't go so well - I drop my ability just before the dialogue appears, and then when I'm in control again I stand still to try and inhale it, but I get hit in the back and killed. We respawn directly outside the miniboss encounter, with no abilities and no partner, but because they're all regular enemies that share a lifebar I can still inhale them and use them as projectiles. After this, we end up with a very similar encounter, but then once round two is over we can find a door to the next area.

 

More dialogue: "Kirby's gonna reach the deck!" "Direct him to the front of the twin cannon." We find ourselves on the ground floor by an elevator - we can grab a Cutter ability before getting in, and then we can go up past some cannons and Bomb enemies, grabbing a Plasma ability (after turning the Cutter ability into a Sir Kibble partner), and heading up a few more elevators. Near the top is a row of indestructible cannons, but we can make them fall by attacking a nearby bomb block. With this done, we can advance through a door to the next area. This has a miniboss encounter against Poppy Bros Sr. and Jukid - the gi-clad fighting miniboss who drops the Suplex ability. I try and chip away at them with Plasma attacks and just scrape through, floating over the regular enemies that are remaining until we get to a door. Luckily, the next area has a boss fountain of sorts - we see the Fire, Yo-yo and Beam abilities in item form as well as a Maxim Tomato. There's also some more dialogue: "Kirby is getting close to the twin cannon." "Kirby will be torched! Wahahahahahaha!" "Hahahahahaha!" "Wahahahahahaha! "Gahahahahahahaha! Hum." Once the antagonists finish their laughter, I heal up and grab a Beam ability. I was going to keep Sir Kibble, but he jumped and collided with the Beam ability too, so I guess I'm using Waddle Doo here.

 

The twin cannon boss is a stationary enemy that has several weapons that come out to damage Kirby and his partner - one of its cannons fires out huge black cannonballs, there's an arm that moves around above us and can pick us up and fling us to the ground, a lower cannon extends out and charges up a long beam attack (fortunately we can safely duck under this, and the charge gives you plenty of warning in advance), and so on. I think the biggest problem for me in this battle is the arm, because it feels like it tracks ever so slightly (I definitely saw it drift upwards as I jumped out of the way) so it's not as easy to predict. We quickly lose our partner and ability, but the boss is constantly providing us with things to throw back at it, and we manage to make it through this encounter safely (well, Kirby does... his partner, less so.) We then see a short zoomed-out scene where Kirby uses a warp star to move from the main cannon to the wing. There's som more dialogue between the enemies - "The main cannon has been destroyed!" "Holy cow! What happened?" "Kirby is heading toward the left wing" - and then the next part begins...

 

Current status:
Game: Revenge of MetaKnight
Score: 167'980
Ability: (none)
Partner: (none)

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We start on the outside of the craft - we can see platforms down below that we're able to drop down to, but there are also enemies roaming about. There's nothing over to the left so we have to move from left to right. As we move forward some orb-like enemies rise up from offscreen and shoot lasers at Kirby. This enemy is known as a "Laser Ball" enemy according to the Kirby wikia, and it always catches me out here, because the ability you get from it in this game isn't nearly as good as the ability in something like Kirby's Adventure. In the NES game you can get the Laser ability (a long-range projectile that fires directly forward and ricochets at certain angles), whereas here you get the standard Beam ability (the short-range attack that fires in a downward arc in front of Kirby) - which is still decent, but not nearly as good as the Laser thing. Aaaanyway, I get the Beam ability for the heck of it, and encounter more of them so I'm able to create the Waddle Doo partner.  To be fair, when both of us have this ability we're able to make progress a lot more safely because the beam covers a wide area, but soon we get to some clusters of destructible blocks. We could just float past them all, but some of the clusters are surrounding health items. It's enticing, but when I scroll the screen just a little more it triggers the arrival of a bunch of enemies - one of them kamikaze-dives into my partner and deals damage, an enemy with the Jet (or Capsule-J) ability is just chilling in midair, and another is roaming around on the destructible blocks. I try and attack, and the enemies fall offscreen once the blocks they were standing on get destroyed, but I also lose a chance to get the health items. We move forward until we're back on solid ground, and the screen stops scrolling as we find a warp star at the right-hand side. Jumping on this takes us to a new part of the ship.

 

This is another windy area, where Kirby and partner are blown from left-to-right and have to be careful to avoid any enemies that are hanging around. I'm able to grab a Cutter ability for Kirby and then go as far right as possible before a dead-end forces me to use the Cutter's downward attack to hit a bomb block beneath us and create a path downward to another passage where we now go to the left. We do this a few more times -  either being carried by the wind or fighting against it, depending on where we need to go in order to reach a bomb block - but on the way my partner dies after receiving damage from enemies, so I change Kirby's own Cutter ability into the Sir Kibble partner. We then head from left to right over some death drops (we can float so it's fine) as the wind carries us from left to right, and we use a bomb block to create a path forward. We can grab a Maxim Tomato here to fully heal Kirby, and then we quickly find ourselves in a miniboss encounter against Mr. Frosty (who has also appeared in Spring Breeze and DynaBlade.) As Kirby has no ability at the moment I just stay out of the way and see what Sir Kibble does, and he's actually able to deal with Mr. Frosty on his own! Although he has taken a lot of damage. Anyway, I swallow Mr. Frosty so that I have the Ice ability, and then we head forward and find a nearby Warp Star.

 

We get another short scene of the outside of the craft, where Kirby and partner are hanging out near the wing, on their Warp Star... and then it cuts back to the interior. The whole screen is glowing red and explosions are going off everywhere, but we can't move yet as we're still in a cutscene. Once the explosions stop, there's some more chatter between the enemies: "Serious damage to the left wing! Approx. 74%!" "Gu.....u!!" "We're gonna lose balance!" "Lower the sail! Increase right wing power!" After all of the chatter, we can move again - this area is a single screen so we can't go left or right, but part of the damage included a hole that we can see in the background; if we enter this like a door, we can get to the next area. More enemy chatter: "Kirby is moving into the duct." "What is he trying to do?" "Is he lost?" "Wait...I have an idea. Hee hee hee." Nice - so not even the enemies have confidence in my ability to navigate levels in Kirby games. We're back in control, but as this is a new area I'll pick this up next time.

 

Current status:
Game: Revenge of MetaKnight
Score: 175'780
Ability: Ice
Partner: Sir Kibble

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The new area has lots of narrow paths to walk and float around, and it's all kind of linear so you can't get lost or anything. Immediately in front of us is an electrical floor hazard, but we have enough vertical space to float over this and upwards into the linear path. As we get out of this confined space there is a Sir Kibble enemy immediately in front of us, but with the Ice ability I can turn the enemy into an ice cube and simply punt it away. From here we can only continue upward - further on we see an enemy taking damage from what looks like a heated(?) floor, and eventually dying... so I guess the enemy was just there to warn us not to walk on that area of the floor. Vertical space is a bit tight but I can float over and to the left, where we find an elevator. We can't go any further left so I go up, and we run into a Cutter enemy and another door/switch combination. This one's fairly easy - the door closes again quickly after the switch is hit, but the switch and door couldn't be much closer to one another, so I'm able to dash across the switch and then keep dashing through the door. On the other side of the door is another elevator - we ride this up, take down a Fighter enemy who's just kind of hanging around on his own, then come to a door and what looks like a path upward. Thinking that the path upward may just lead to a single area whilst the door is hard progress, I begin floating to the top of the screen, but as soon as I do this the screen starts scrolling upwards! I think this was the critical path - I desperately try to drop back to the door before it scrolls offscreen, but I just end up falling into an offscreen death zone.

 

I try to get back to the same place - grabbing a Cutter ability and a Sir Kibble partner on the way - and this time I take the door. It leads to a boss fountain - there's a Maxim Tomato, some abilities in item form and a door to a boss room... however, there's no door that goes back, so I guess we've committed now! As we enter the door there's some more enemy chatter - "Ready?" "Is this OK, Sir?" "Are you positive about this? "Be quiet! This is our only chance." "Don't fail again! Release Heavy Lobster!" Once we're back in control we end up in an autoscroller where we're chased by the Heavy Lobster enemy I mentioned at the start of my RoMK notes. We have to jump and move around obstacles in our way (Heavy Lobster just ploughs through them and continues to pursue us), or clear a path by attacking the destructible blocks we find - all the while listening to enemy chatter: "Hee hee hee hee! Get Kirby!" "Oh no, our battleship is being destroyed..." "That's not important now! Go ahead!" We can stick to the right edge and only suffer from an occasional wall that forces us to quickly double-back, but it's not too bad. After scrolling to the right the screen scrolls up and we continue to escape Heavy Lobster, until finally we get another miniboss battle.

 

Heavy Lobster can charge into us, walk into us, jump on us, drop hazards, strike us with its arm, fire short-range flames at us, deploy what look like mini versions of itself that walk into us... there's a lot going on. I do some decent damage but end up losing my own Cutter ability, so I turn Sir Kibble into an ability that Kirby can use, and finish it off. We get another exterior view of the craft - Kirby catches a Warp Star to an outer part of the ship, and then as the next bit starts there's some more chatter: "Major damage to the right wing!" "Don't worry! We've regained balance." "Kirby's outside! He's going under the ship!" With this, we're back in control, and the next part begins. I think we're getting close to the climax of the adventure where Kirby and Meta Knight eventually throw down, but I believe that we have some more regular platforming and stuff before we end up getting there. Also, the next stage may be one of the more involved ones (in terms of navigation and my tendency to screw things up), but perhaps I'm misremembering things. We'll see.

 

Current status:

Game: Revenge of MetaKnight

Score: 210'280
Ability: Cutter
Partner: (none)

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~Hidden Tomatoes~

 

"Kirby's outside! He's going under the ship!" So yeah, we're stood on a small platform which must be in the upper-left corner of the deck? However, going up or right leads us nowhere; we have to drop down in order for the screen to scroll anywhere. It would be a leap of faith if not for the fact that we can float down safely - we end up landing in another DKC barrel-cannon thing - I fire it directly down and end up near some food items, then I continue floating down and get in another cannon; I fire this down and to the left, straight into a third cannon, and I bounce off a platform and into a third cannon. I fire this directly down but I have to quickly cancel my plummet downwards with a float, because the screen stops scrolling (indicating that I could potentially fall off the screen to my death.) There's a door to the right that leads us to a new area and some more enemy dialogue as they discuss the situation and their plan to intercept. Well, kind of - "Kirby's entered from underneath the ship." "The bottom's weak... The wind is too strong." "It's too cold." "I'm afraid of heights!" "No way! I ain't goin'." "You chickens!" This is another platforming sequence with wind that blows us to the left, but we can only move from right to left, so we''ve just got to watch our momentum. We can destroy bomb blocks to create a path forward, but I spot a Plasma Wisp enemy just ahead, so I find a nearby platform to drop on, create a Sir Kibble partner from my Cutter ability and grab the Plasma ability for Kirby. We break through more bomb blocks and take out more enemies until we find a door.

 

Inside, there are more doors that activate on timed switches - you step on them or attack them with something, then a door opens somewhere for a few moments. The first challenge is a simple double-door; we can jump and fire a charged Plasma shot at one switch, dropping onto the other to get through. We then come across a couple of other switches - Switch A operates a door immediately below us whilst Switch B activates a door somewhere offscreen. Through the door immediately below us is a Switch C, which activates a door immediately to the right of all of this. However, if we try and activate Switch C after going through the door, we waste too much time getting back to the door we opened. So to keep things simple, forget Switch A even exists....because there's a quicker way of getting to Switch C. Once we hit Switch B for the offscreen door, we can drop down to other side of the room where Switch C is, and activate it with a long-range attack that passes through walls - like the Plasma ability. This gives us enough time to run through the door immediately to the right of us (which Switch C opened) and find and run through the offscreen door that Switch B opened. (Happily, by the time you're at the door that Switch C opened, you can see the door that Switch B opens, so you're not playing completely blind.) We get to an elevator that goes nowhere but teases some food items behind a wall, and we can go right to a second elevator that lets us get to those food items. The elevator continues down to a switch that opens up a path for the first elevator to continue down, so we go all the way down, take out some more enemies and come to a door that leads to a room with food items for health, a 1-up, a Maxim Tomato and some enemies who are surprised by our entry: "Oh no! These are my hidden tomatoes!" "You idiot! You hid those?" "They look delicious." We grab everything and leave, then head right towards a door that leads to the next area. More chatter: "Kirby is heading toward the reactor!" "If we lose power, we're doomed!!" "Relax. The reactor can't be defeated!" "I hope no reflect lasers hit the reactor!" "Shhh! That's a SECRET!" Ahem. This room has a Bomb ability in item form and a Maxim Tomato, so I grab these and head into the only other door.

 

Through the door is the next boss - the reactor room. There's a big cannon with a colourful crystal directly above it, a laser that aims at Kirby and fires a ricocheting shot around the room, and also jets below the floor that follow our movement and shoot flames up where we're standing. (There's also an alternative attack where three jets fire columns of flames upwards, but there are gaps where you can stand between the columns.) There's no way to damage anything directly, but the idea is to manipulate the laser's aim in such a way that the ricocheting shot ends up hitting the crystal. To begin with it feels like it's tricky to guide the laser when you're also trying to avoid the jets, but later on in the battle there are clear pauses that separate the "laser" phase and the "jets" phases, so it's a lot easier to manage the situation. The crystal only needs about four hits before the reactor explodes, although we cut it a bit fine with the time limit! There's more dialogue between the enemies - "Bad news! The reactor's been damaged!" "The Wheelies are abandoning ship!" (and to be fair a few Wheelie enemies have rolled onscreen) "Urgggh! Do SOMETHING!" It cuts to another exterior shot of the craft, with Kirby flying about on his Warp Star to the next area, and then we get the new stage, and it's opening dialogue from the enemies: "We are losing power! Engine No.3! Engine No.5!" "Ain't any power left! We can't fly!" "(We've failed... It's over.)" "Attention all crew! Evacuate ship!!" "Waaah! The ship's going down!" As mentioned, we might be near the end now, so we'll see what happens.

 

Current status:

Game: Revenge of MetaKnight

Score: 259'930
Ability: Bomb
Partner: (none)

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~Revenge of MetaKnight: Finale~

 

"Waaah! The ship's going down!" As soon as I close this dialogue box, we're automatically scrolled from left to right very slowly - there are no real threats onscreen but there are a few abilities in item form that we can pick up before we take on MetaKnight: Cutter, Parasol, Yoyo, Stone and Ninja. I grab a Cutter ability and turn it into the Sir Kibble partner, then give Kirby a Yoyo ability. This has a nice "breakdancing" dash attack as well as the short-range yo-yo attack, so there are some interesting offensive options. We autoscroll past some breakable floors (although I think there's nothing but death below them) and some regular enemies, whilst the chatter between the enemies continues: "I'm not staying. I'm evacuating!!" Meta Knight responds with "Now, it's your turn to evacuate." Some of the enemies protest: "No, I want to stay with you, Sir!" "Let's try one more time to get Kirby!" MetaKnight only responds with "Hmmm.... It's dangerous, but it's worth a try! Thank you, guys." As the autoscrolling continues we can grab some nearby food items for health, but we can't waste too much time because there's also a wall of breakable blocks to deal with. We take out a few more enemies and walls, but then I get squashed by the scrolling - it felt like it sped up a bit, and I ended up on a breakable floor whilst next to a breakable wall which squashed me. I could have broken the wall but I wasn't sure if the hitbox would break the floor and send me to my death. Next time around, I float up to the wall and detroy it with the floating attack, then hop through a nearby door.

 

In this new area, there's a Maxim Tomato and an elevator - we ride it up to the top and end up with another "multiple regular enemies with a shared lifebar" forced encounter. As they appear, we get some dialogue from them - "Wait, Kirby!!" "You can't go any further!" This is a bit of a gauntlet - we don't just destroy the first enemies we see; as they are dealt with, more enemies spawn in. We just have to keep going until the lifebar is drained. Yoyo's dash attack and ranged attack work well in keeping Kirby safe, but Sir Kibble is a bit careless and takes some hits. We still make it through the encounter, however, and get some more dialogue: "Sir Meta-Knight, you're on your own!" "We're evacuating!" Back in control, I can move forward to an elevator and ride it up to a door that leads to a new area. We end up in another "boss fountain" room - it looks like it has Ninja, Sleep and Cutter abilities in item form, as well as a Maxim Tomato in the corner. I heal both of us, and decide to go in with my current arrangement of Yoyo and Sir Kibble. The scene fades to black and MetaKnight declares "Kirby, this is it! Prepare to die!"

 

In the next room, MetaKnight is on a platform in the upper-right corner, but doesn't move. There's a Sword ability in item form on the ground, but above it are the words "GET IT!" in big glowing letters. Put simply, this boss encounter won't let you start unless you use the Sword ability (and I think the option to turn your partner into an ability for Kirby is disabled as well.) Meta Knight's fighting style is very similar to the Sword ability - he can do short-range slashes as well as rapid stabs - but the ground shockwaves and vertical pillars of air(?) suggests that he has a few "boss moves" that aren't in the ability move list (unless they are and I just never used them, or forgot they existed in the Sword ability moveset. Which is totally possible.) As expected, Sir Kibble goes in with little regard for his own safety and quickly dies, but as a pair we still took him down to almost 25% health, so I quickly wrapped things up. As we deliver the last blow, Meta Knight's mask flies off and he makes a quick exit. There's a final exterior view of the craft, but it's not over. Tumbling onto a nearby Wheelie partner, we have to use the Wheelie Rider ability to negotiate a few obstacles whilst avoiding or withstanding attacks from Meta Knight. We have 50 seconds to escape, but as long as you don't fall to your death you can kind of ignore any other attacks and plough on until you escape.

 

Kirby lands to watch the craft plummet into the sea, then rides away. We get a "credits roll" of enemies (and the corresponding abilities), and we're back on the minigame selection screen. After working through four other minigames, Milkyway Wishes finally bursts into colour and becomes selectable, whilst the details for Revenge of MetaKnight now include the little rosette to indicate completion. From what I recall, Milkyway Wishes is supposed to be one of the most substantial minigames here, and I don't know how far I've ever got when playing it in the past, so the adventure is finally about to begin...

 

Final status for Revenge of MetaKnight:
Score: 372'030
Ability: Wheelie Rider
Partner: Wheelie

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At the selection screen, we select Milkyway Wishes to get the usual pre-game details: the description simply reads "HELP! You must stop the Sun and Moon from fighting!", but the difficulty rating his now five stars; the highest yet. I select Milkyway Wishes and start a new game. Now, despite the varying themes and designs that we've seen so far, Milkyway Wishes is one of the most radical departures in this series of minigames, and so it's one of the minigames where I'd strongly recommend looking at the tutorial before playing. "You can't copy enemies' abilities in this game. Don't worry. There is a better way to do it! It's called the Deluxe copy ability. By touching the Deluxe copy characters, Kirby acquires that ability FOREVER! You can select acquired abilities by pressing START. There is no limit for using abilities. Use them as much as you want. You can select different abilities during play. Press X (or (left and right on the d-pad)) to cycle through. If you come to a dead end and can't break through, you must find another hidden ability. Now this is the final game...so concentrate and do your best!"

 

So we're Mega Man now - we obtain abilities forever and can cycle between them.  (Although thankfully most of the abilities are just placed in the worlds somewhere without you having to fight a robot master in order to obtain them.) With the tutorial over, we're dropped on a map screen of the galaxy. Unlike something like SMB3, there are no lanes between stages - we can freely move around and must select planets. I decide to start at the top-left of the galaxy map, with the location Floria. We begin in a fairly safe area - a tree blocks our path forward, there's only one enemy and there's a door we can reach. Through the door is a very similar situation - a tree in the way and not many enemies - but we can enter the door a second time to a new location which lets us go forward. So a door in one location can be entered multiple times. We progress forward to another door and move through a snowy area until we reach a door on the far-right side. Through here, we return in our original area on the other side of the tree, but we can enter again to find a new door that only exists in one of the "parallel areas". Through here, we find a room with our first permanent ability, Cutter. I backtrack to one of the other doors and find that by moving to another area we uncover a door that's only in that area - this is a room with the Fighter ability. I backtrack past the tree and over to the left, then change to the snowy area where I find the Ice ability. Satisfied that I've checked the doors, I dabble with ability swapping a little, and find that you can make partners from abilities as much as you like, so yay. I opt for Fighter Kirby with a Chilly partner and continue forward until I reach a new Whispy Woods boss - well, two of them in the same screen.

 

The Fighter and Cutter abilities are fairly good at dealing damage, although my Chilly partner doesn't help all that much. Nevertheless, we clear the boss without any trouble and end up in the usual "stage clear" screen where Kirby and Chilly do their dance. The view pans up and fades to black, and then we're back at the map screen. I can see there's now a kind of starry trail between Floria and a blue planet slightly to the right, so maybe it's hinting at where I should go next? Also, I noticed that one area of Floria had a door that was only in one of the "parallel areas", but I couldn't get to it because it was beneath a load of frozen water. So perhaps I'll have to come back to Floria after gaining some more abilities. Preferably something with a drop-attack, or maybe even something that has a large attack radius so that I can even damage blocks below me (I'm thinking something like the Bomb ability, aka Poppy Bros. Jr? I'll be taking a lot of guesses here...)

 

CroLBR5.jpg

 

EDIT: oh btw, this mode doesn't have save rooms like The Great Cave Offensive, but I went back after posting this and loaded the game again, and found that it stores my Milkyway Wishes progress by itself, so hopefully I won't have to bother with save states between updates.

 

Current status:
Game: Milkyway Wishes
Score: 50'240
Abilities: Cutter, Fighter, Ice
Visited: Floria

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We follow the starry trail to the blue planet on the map, and end up in "Aqualiss". Kirby descends on his Warp Star into a body of water, but when we hit the surface we only find a door to go through. There are a few islands on the surface that serve as platforms to explore, but there's a lot of stuff underwater as well, so I'll probably miss something here... Moving from left to right on the surface I come to a wall, and if I swim below I find a bomb block. I swim from right to left just to check for anything I may miss underwater, then return to the bomb block and break through it. The path here is pretty linear and I eventually come out of the water and can go left to a health item or right for progress. If we continue exploring underwater we can find a bomb block that reveals a door to the Parasol Deluxe Copy Ability, so we grab this and leave. I continue to check above and below the water (we spot a fuse and a cannon but I can't do anything to it without a Fire ability) until the scrolling stops and we have to take the door to the next area.

 

This is a large swimming section that scrolls in four directions, so I try to cover it methodically (in case there are doors leading to Deluxe Copy Abilities) but I only really find some food items and a door to a similar swimming area with a space backdrop. (Swimming through floating bodies of water in space? Don't try to think too much about it.) This is a large square area with two doors: one near the centre, and one in the lower-right corner. I try the one in the corner, but unfortunately this is hard progress with no way back, so I'll have to see if I can come back to the centre door in a moment. The new area is a swimming section, but also a miniature maze of sorts - multiple paths lead to different doors, some paths have currents that force you in one direction, and some doors reset you to the beginning of the area. This takes a lot of trial and error (although there is a Beam Deluxe Copy Ability out in the open that we manage to grab) but we eventually find a way out, run into a bunch of food items for health and find a door that leads to the Fatty Whale miniboss from The Great Cave Offensive. Since I already took a few hits earlier in this stage, I don't survive the first encounter, but a combination of Cutter and Sir Kibble helps us with the rematch. Here, the stage ends, and a new starry trail directs us to the next planet, "Skyhigh".

 

I might revisit Aqualiss and double-check the area directly below the cannon in the first area and the [not in the lower-right corner] door in the swimming area just in case I missed anything. But I might not. Anyway, if I find anything I'll edit these notes!

 

EDIT: so yeah, that other door in the swimming area totally led to a missable area. You end up in a linear corridor and deal with a few sword-wielding enemies, and then you come to a dead-end with a bunch of breakable blocks beneath your feet. The Cutter ability has a drop attack that can be performed after a jump, so you can make your way down where you find some spikes to float over, one or two regular enemies, a Maxim Tomato and a rematch against the Jukid miniboss we've encountered in previous minigames. Sir Kibble makes short work of the miniboss, and when he's defeated we can grab the Sword Deluxe Copy Ability. So then I just had to do the whole maze thing and Fatty Whale again, and then we were done. Yay.

 

EDIT 2: Also, I found that the frozen area in Floria can be broken through by using a drop attack that the Sword ability has - this lets us get to that other door in Floria... but it leads to a single-screen room with nothing but health items. So, no new toys behind that particular door. To be honest since Floria did so much "one door leads to multiple areas" shenanigans, I should have known that the door below the ice was nothing special, but I was still curious...

 

Current status:
Game: Milkyway Wishes
Score: 56'130
Abilities: Cutter, Fighter, Ice, Parasol, Beam, Sword
Visited: Floria, Aqualiss

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Skyhigh is soundtracked by the twee but catchy Candy Mountain theme, which is always good, and our warp star lands among the clouds. There isn't a whole lot to do in the first screen other than go through the door that's there, but first I change Kirby's ability to Beam and give him a Waddle Doo partner. We enter the door and proceed through the clouds, fighting through enemies and collecting items. I try to float up when possible as this area scrolls upwards a bit, and this does lead us to a 1-up item, so yay. We come across a door above us which goes to a room that has the Jet Deluxe Copy Ability, so I give this ability to my partner and switch back to Beam. We continue onward past a few food items and regular enemies - we see a fuse for a cannon but we don't have anything that can light it right now, so we move on (also there is a Maxim Tomato along the way, just hanging out, so we can both be healed.) I change our abilities to Cutter and Waddle Doo for the moment and work through more enemies, and eventually the screen stops scrolling as we come to a single door.

 

The door leads to another maze of multiple rooms with multiple doors. (Mercifully, each of the rooms is a single screen which doesn't scroll, so you get all of the visual information you need.) A cloudy area we end up in has three doors - I start by entering the left door and subsequently find myself in a new area which contains a food item for health and three more doors. I enter the left door in this room... and I keep entering the left door in each room that I end up in... until I realise that the rooms are repeating. So if you keep taking the left door you won't get anywhere. Whilst going around in circles, I notice that one enemy roams around the centre door in one of the rooms - assuming that there may be something worthwhile there, I try entering this door and then the right door, but eventually I find myself in another loop of going nowhere. In one situation, if I enter the right door and then the right door again, I end up in a cannon room with some food items. From here, I can take the middle door and then the left door in the subsequent area to find more health items, and then when I take the middle door again I find a room with the Bird Deluxe Copy Ability. I head back out of this room and try the right door a few more times, until I finally find the boss door. The boss here is Kracko, the cloud-like boss with one eye who shoots lightning attacks. I enter the encounter with low health so I don't last long, but on my next attempt (which restarts us at the boss so we don't need to find our way there again) I use the Cutter and Sir Kibble abilities to defeat him fairly easily. We get the end of stage fanfare and are sent back to the map, where a new starry trail will lead us from Skyhigh to the next planet, Hotheat. So this stage wasn't too bad, but I might revisit it and make an effort to properly map out the multiple areas of three doors just in case I've missed something. I'll edit in any findings below.

 

(One revisit later...)

 

Okay, so after taking a bunch of screenshots and drawing enough connecting lines between screenshots to forge a convincing career crafting elaborate String Theory displays... I've convinced myself that there aren't any Deluxe Copy Abilities found in this network of rooms. Well, aside from the Bird Deluxe Copy Ability that I stumbled across when I originally played through this location. To be fair, there are only about eight different locations that the doors go between so it's not too bad, but you still have to keep track of which doors you've been through so that you don't go around in circles. Oh, and even if you eliminate enemies in one room, they will re-appear if you ever end up entering that room again, so it kind of forces you to ignore enemies; instead you should simply hurry and pick a door. I could have ignored all of the doors after finding out how to get to Kracko, but then I'd wonder if I missed anything in any of those many rooms. Instead, I did enough running around and exploring and re-exploring to be satisfied with what I've found, and then I found Kracko and defeated him again, so I'll try and move on to Hotheat next time.

 

Current status:
Game: Milkyway Wishes
Score: 47'400 (I just realised that these are area scores, not an overall score!)
Abilities: Cutter, Fighter, Ice, Parasol, Beam, Sword, Jet, Bird
Visited: Floria, Aqualiss, Skyhigh

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~No Gimmicks~

 

I took a little break from this because Christmas, but since Milkyway Wishes is when my knowledge of the game gets fuzzy, I'm keen to continue. The starry trail on the map leads us to Hotheat, and we begin by landing in an area where fiery blocks surround certain areas of the floor and ceiling, so we need to be careful when floating as we'll take damage if we touch them. I stop for a minute just to check if the Ice ability does anything against the lava blocks, but sadly not. :P We make it past a few "Sleep" enemies - these would send Kirby to sleep if consumed, but I don't know if that still applies when regular ability acquisition isn't a thing? - and fiery blocks, and since we're floating between a floor and ceiling of fiery blocks I decide to use the Bird ability in the hope of getting a little more mid-air control. Even so, we still take a few hits. We make it through more areas of fiery blocks and sleeping enemies until we find another DKC barrel cannon. Since most of our surroundings are lined with these fiery blocks, the path is kind of linear and we can only really go left (there is a bomb block we can destroy but this creates a vertical pillar of fiery blocks - so don't destroy this if you haven't moved beyond it yet!) I try and fly past more enemies but take some hits... but luckily I run into an Invincible Candy! I leg it as far as I can, through a door to another zone. There is a minecart here but running is probably faster - I break a bomb block to clear a path forward and eventually stop when I think it's about to run out. I do pass some stumps here, so a Hammer ability may be useful if I had one... but I can't do anything now, so I keep going. There's another minecart just ahead of me that can be used to safely move over the lava, but I send it off and jump out, leaving myself stranded. It would be pretty hard to float through the gap that the minecart would carry me through, and my attempt at doing so kills me.

 

Next time around, I choose the Bird ability again and stay in the first cart I get to. It turns out that the carts push the stumps down as they run over them, so I can push them down to create a path forward. Eventually one stump creates a wall of lava in front of us, so I jump out and float up. A few more optional minecarts bring us to some health items, whilst the main path brings us to a door - a one-way path to the next area. This area is a similar deal - lots of fiery blocks that damage us if touched. At the beginning of this area I don't find any minecarts so I have to rely on my floating. I do spot an area to the right with a Maxim Tomato and 1up, but there are a lot of fiery blocks and enemies hanging around, so you kind of have to take a hit and hope that you can grab the power-ups and get out before your post-hit invincibility runs out. I re-select the Bird ability and move over more fiery blocks until I find more DKC cannons; we can use some of these to get an optional 1up and Maxim Tomato, and then we can use another to head down. We find ourselves with two paths - there's a cannon pointing right that's immediately to our right, and there's a very narrow path to our left with fiery blocks above and below. The Jet ability we have can do a charged dash move, so I try and use this for the left path... however, it just leads back to the cannons we were just using. Doh. The main path takes us to another Maxim Tomato (but we're already at full health) and a door to this area's miniboss. It's another recycled boss - this time we're up against the chameleon character we faced back in The Great Cave Offensive. His moveset hasn't changed; he collides with us, throws projectiles and turns near-invisible at times (although the background is always warped just enough to be able to spot him.) My partner dies partway through the battle, but I clutch it out with the Cutter ability's projectiles.

 

With that, we're back at the map screen - a starry path connects Hotheat and our next destination, Cavios... but I also spot a distinctly bright star directly above Skyhigh. I don't know the locations from memory, but I do remember websites saying that certain points on the map lead to secret areas with extra abilities. I had been taking a few guesses on the map during my updates, but this one actually goes somewhere! Kirby lands in an area named "?" and has to fight (or float past) a few regular enemies and avoid some deadly drops. It's a short area and not very threatening, and we can move through a door to the next part of this mystery area. This part has a blue sky and solid black ground, so it's like a silhouette at night. There are a few enemies running around on the ground and more deadly drops, but we can float over most of it until we find a door to the next part. Here, we find a warp star that will let us leave the area, but we also find the "Copy" Deluxe Copy Ability. This is a big deal; in the world of Kirby there's a thief enemy that can essentially rob Kirby of the ability he's using (reverting you back to regular Kirby), but if you swallow him you gain the ability "Copy". This is a short range "attack" that instantly gives Kirby the ability of the enemy it hits. In most other modes this wouldn't matter - you can already gain abilities by swallowing enemies - but if it works in Milkyway Wishes, I may have more opportunities to use abilities outside of the Deluxe Copy abilities I have, and diminish the impact of the "You can't copy enemies' abilities in this game" gimmick outlined in the Milkyway Wishes tutorial. Yay!

 

Current status:
Game: Milkyway Wishes
Area score: 48'900
Abilities: Cutter, Fighter, Ice, Parasol, Beam, Sword, Jet, Bird, Copy
Visited: Floria, Aqualiss, Skyhigh, Hotheat

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