Kirby's Dream Land 3 Articles RSS Feed | Kirby's Dream Land 3 RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network 10 lesser-known SNES classics to remember (and play) for its 25th anniversary Tue, 23 Aug 2016 09:58:42 -0400 Ashley Shankle

The Super Nintendo will forever be remembered fondly -- not only by those who had one during its lifespan but by retro gamers and 2D game fans for decades to come. Its game library is revered as one of the best, packed with lengthy RPGs and high quality action titles that are still gaming staples today.

On August 23rd, 1991 the Super Nintendo hit the North American market with a mere five launch titles: SimCity, Gradius III, F-Zero, Pilotwings, and the still-coveted Super Mario World. While not the largest of launch line ups, these games continued to be popular throughout the console's lifespan -- and you'll be hard-pressed not to find a SNES owner without at least two of them in their library today.

The early to mid-90's was an exciting time to play video games as a kid. Gaming magazines were plentiful and were always packed with strategy guides and new info on upcoming hyped titles, the console war between Nintendo's SNES and Sega's Genesis was going strong, and incremental graphical upgrades made a world of difference.

Gaming culture during the Super Nintendo's hey day was a different beast from what it is today. You don't have to miss it to appreciate the games that came out at the time, but it certainly helps.

Today during its 25th anniversary I urge you (even my fellow Sega kids) to hook up your console, load up your preferred emulator, or hop onto the Wii U Virtual Console to give the Super Nintendo the attention deserves. The 10 games below may not be talked about the most, but some are bound to fall through the cracks when a console has as many good games as the SNES did throughout its lifetime.

Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals

Between the two Lufia games on the SNES, Rise of the Sinistrals is by far the better game (and a prequel to the first). Its Zelda-esque puzzles and dungeons aren't particularly difficult, making this a great starter JRPG for newcomers -- and its overall quality and fun-factor make it a fun adventure even for seasoned veterans. If you haven't played this oft-overlooked gem, you should.

Zombies Ate My Neighbors

Still one of my co-op go-tos, Zombies Ate My Neighbors isn't a SNES exclusive, but it's still a bundle of fun. Equipped with your trusty water pistols, you and (hopefully) a partner have to push through dozens of increasingly difficult and creatively-designed levels to survive the hordes of horror movie-theme monsters and just maybe save your lazy, oblivious neighbors.

Super Mario RPG: Legend of The Seven Stars

You may hear about this one from time to time, but Mario fans tend to bring up the later-released Paper Mario 64 and Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door more often. Nonetheless Super Mario RPG, developed by then-powerhouse Squaresoft, is such a well-made blend of turn-based RPG, humor, and amazing music it's impossible not to recommend to anyone who loves Mario or is interested in good SNES RPGs.

Super Castlevania IV

This may be a retelling of the original NES Castlevania, but Super Castlevania IV is still heralded as one of the best in Konami's long-running series. With 8-directional whipping action for combat and platforming, a number of other weapons, iconic music and a slew of frustrating and difficult bosses, it's easy to see why this is still regarded so highly among the wealth of Castlevania titles we've gotten over the years.

Secret of Mana

Another classic Squaresoft title, Secret of Mana still stands as one of the most memorable action RPGs on the SNES and its gameplay holds up today (though in some respects it is a little slow). This game is definitely an adventure and it sets the stage for the rest of the Mana series. The beginnings of Mana lore and ring menu-based skill/item usage get fleshed out here, and it's wonderful progressing playing both solo and with up to two friends.

The Magical Quest starring Mickey Mouse

Say what you want, but there were a lot of great Disney license games during the SNES/Genesis era -- and this is definitely one of them. The platforming here is a bit slower than some better known titles, but it's solid as can be and the game's outfit system in which Mickey's abilities change based on outfit keeps things interesting and fun. This isn't the absolute best Disney game of the era but it is definitely up there and it's a blast.

Kirby's Dreamland 3

Did you expect Kirby Super Star? Kirby Super Star is an amazing game, don't get me wrong -- but people tend to forget the third Kirby's Dreamland game is on the SNES, much less exists. This iteration of the series improves on its predecessors in every way, from controls and pastel drawing-style visuals down to the array of abilities Kirby can acquire. Not only that but Kirby can make friends with six different animals, each with different abilities that change up the gameplay significantly. All in all one of the most charming on this list.

Illusion of Gaia

An oft-forgotten gem of an RPG, Illusion of Gaia takes much of what were staples of the genre at the time and tosses them aside for its own systems. Gone are EXP and equipment, instead are incremental stat increases, rare healing herbs, and a huge emphasis on story. There really isn't much bad to be said about Illusion of Gaia except the official North American version skips much of the controversial dialogue and themes seen in the original Japanese release.


Another RPG worthy of being mentioned 20 years past its prime, Terranigma is actually the second in a spiritual trilogy, of which Illusion of Gaia is the third game (the second being Soul Blazer). Terranigma is generally considered the best of the three, if not one of the best games on the console. It's top-notch in pretty much every regard and is loads of fun to boot. The only problem here is there was never an official North American release -- luckily both Europe and Australia saw this beauty released in English.

Super Smash TV

Smash TV found its way onto a lot of consoles with Super Smash TV on the SNES and Genesis being the graphically superior options. No matter what it looks like, it's downright fun. A twinstick shooter without a single crap to give, Super Smash TV on the SNES is a brutal exercise in your ability to stick it out and shoot'em the hell up through a sadistic gameshow packed with high-tech surprises (thanks for the VCR) and more baddies than you'll know what to do with. It's amazing fun solo but even better with a friend, but don't come in expecting something deep. This is arcade-style fun through and through.

As mentioned before these may not be the first games you think of when you imagine the Super Nintendo library, but that does not demerit these games. The SNES was packed to the brim with games good and bad, and it had a staggering ratio of good to bad titles.

In a time where investors and research groups dictate what's to come and mainstream gaming is all but homogenized, it's an ironically fresh breath of air to sit down and play older titles that tried all the new things they could with the technology available or attempted to perfect the art of their respective genres, all the while maintaining that fun factor that not only made these games fun at release but keep them entertaining over 20 years later. That's what makes retro games live on today, and that's exactly why classic and 2D gaming will never die.

Top 12 Greatest Cats of Video Games Sun, 05 Jun 2016 08:06:34 -0400 Anthony Pelone


And so ends this list. Yes, that is a cat cuddled up with a copy of Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood. That's Fukurashi, the cat of Masahiro Sakurai (Kirby, Super Smash Bros.) and whose hilarious adventures are cataloged in these two Twitter albums. In case you're hopping mad your favorite gaming kitty didn't show up, I'd highly recommend checking them out to soothe your soul.


Did your favorite feline miss the cut? Let us know in the comments below!


12. Crono's Cat (Chrono Trigger)

Imagine a sunbaked morning, with your head buried beneath the warm covers as your fur baby is curled up within your arms. Granted, Crono's Cat chooses to rest beside a nearby waste bucket, but he still represents the ideal cat: a loving companion who'll never leave your side. Just look at how he follows Crono around the house!


Crono's Cat is hardly seen throughout the game, yet its role is potentially the biggest of the game's cast. It influences Chrono Trigger's default ending, and winning a certain game at the Millennial Fair will win you more cat food...which attracts more cats. If the mischief of various cats throughout the game are any indication, looks like those sunbaked mornings are about to get a lot more lively for Crono.


11. Meowth (Pokémon)

Meowth, that's right! Several cat-inspired Pokémon have debuted throughout the years, but none are nearly as iconic as Meowth. Just look at his resume: he's the Team Rocket poster child, is one of the few talking Pokémon, had his own GameCube tech demo (Meowth's Party, where he rocked out with a groovin' guitar), is a PokéBall summon in Smash Bros., the list goes on. Granted, half of those come from the anime, but it's helped propelled him into stardom, regardless.

Meowth's signature attack, Pay Day, comes quite in handy for Pokémon Trainers in need for cash. In what are probably the funds its gathered from its nightly prowls, Meowth showers the opponent with coins, some of which go to the player's wallet. Whoever said cats can't make money?


10. Toro and Kuro (Sony)

These two cats aren't from a specific game, but they operate as Sony mascots for their gaming platforms. Toro Inoue, the white one, tries his best to act like a human, while Kuro, the black one, is his bully of a rival rival with something of a perverted streak. Their follies aside, taking just one look at their faces will give you the warm fuzzies

These mascots mainly function as such in Japan, but we've seen them several times in the Western sphere. Pictured above is their playable appearance in Street Fighter x Tekken; not a game loved by many, but their theme song is just too cute. 


9. Nago the Cat (Kirby's Dream Land 3)

Yes, that is a cat! His one and only Kirby appearance lies in Kirby's Dream Land 3 for the SNES, where he's one of many animal buddies that aid the puffball's quest. Some get a bit creative with how they accompany Kirby; in Nago's case, he rolls him along like a ball.


Animal buddies can channel Kirby's Copy Abilities to concoct devastating attacks, and Nago is no exception. So, what can he do? Well, in the case of Spark, he paws Kirby with enough static electricity that it is dangerous to the touch. Then there's Clean, where Kirby turns into a cloth and Nago slides on him to plow into enemies. And, my personal favorite: Stone, where he picks up Stone Kirby and repeatedly slams him into the ground with earthquake-level force. It's great. 


8. Judd (Splatoon)

Everyone can't get enough of the kids and squids of Splatoon, but us cat lovers know who the real star is: the referee, Judd. The corpulent kitty oversees the Inklings' Turf Wars, raising and dropping flags in stupefied awe to whoever, respectively, won or lost. But when he's not busy judging, you'll find him in Inkopolis Plaza doing what every cat does best: napping.


In this world of aquatic-human hybrids, it's refreshing to see a full-blooded mammal within Splatoon's colorful cast. But why is that the case? The answer may lie in the Sunken Sea Scrolls, which imply a past that'd make any cat owner's heart break...


7. Katz (Tales of Symphonia)


This one might be cheating, although we never learn what exactly Katz are. In any case, they're a pot-bellied cat-like race who occupy nearly every town in the world of Tales of Symphonia, offering treasure hunting services and mini-game fun. There's even a hidden Katz Village in the far corners of Sylvarant, serving as a cozy little hamlet full of goods.

Racism is quite the heavy theme in Tales of Symphonia, as citizens of both Sylvarant and Tethe'alla fall prey to anti-Half-Elf propaganda. Thankfully, it would appear Symphonia's world is populated with cat lovers, as they embrace the mysterious nature of Katz with open arms. Just look at how touched they are when they help rebuild Luin! 


6. Cat Goomba (Super Mario 3D World)

I'm sorry, I know Cat Toad is the cutest of Super Mario 3D World's catfolk, but in my heart I know Cat Goomba is the greatest of them all. They're not just cute; their newfound jumping prowess is so fearsome that even Luigi is too panicked to fight back! 


...But that's just Luigi; actually, if he musters up the courage to fight back, he'll discover they're still defeated in one stomp. But they still try hard with their new feline persona, and that melts my heart enough to make me want one of my own. Seriously, why haven't they made a Cat Goomba plushie yet? 


5. Jibanyan (Yo-Kai Watch)


Paws of Fury! Jibanyan, the mascot of Level 5's Yo-Kai Watch series, is one of the first ghostly Yo-Kai you'll come across. A fire-breathing, two-tailed kitty, Jibanyan was once a cat named Rudy in a past life, until he was fatally run over by a truck. But a kitty's grudge runs deep; even now, he tries to challenge the truck that killed him, but fails every time. Why exactly does he go to such lengths? I'd tell you, but I'm getting chocked up just thinking about it...


Yo-Kai Watch has been gradually gaining momentum since it launched in Western territories last year, but apparent reports of its slowing down in Japan have dispelled any notions of Jibanyan taking down Pikachu. Whatever the case, I just can't get enough of his dancing animation while charging his Soultimate. It's so purrfectly adorable. 


4. Tangy (Animal Crossing)

Is there any cat in all of Animal Crossing more fascinating than Tangy? As much as I remain amused by Rover's stalking train hopping, all it takes is one look at Tangy's head to start asking questions. What's with all pores? The leaf sprouting between her ears? Was she actually born as a half-cat, half-orange hybrid, or was it plastic surgery gone horribly, horribly wrong?


I realize I'm asking this in a series where villagers can be robot frogs and mummy dogs, but those have logical answers: Ribbot was just built that way, and Lucky might've had a terrible accident. We get no such answer from Tangy, but in any case, she might want to watch out: villagers with the "lazy" personality are known to get pretty hungry, reeOWR.


3. King Tom (Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch)


That's Your Meowjesty, to you! Reigning over the province of Ding Dong Dell, this third-person-speaking cat was a great wizard in his heyday, but you wouldn't know it when we first meet him. Indeed, he's one of the many Other World residents who's fallen under Shadar's Brokenhearted spell, and so we first encounter him lounging about lazily in his throne room. Typical for a housecat, but not so much for a king. It's not until Oliver and Drippy cure his broken heart that he repays his debt by handing Oliver his old wand, setting his first real step as a full-fledged wizard.


By the way, they say every Other World denizen has a soulmate in the Real World, like two sides of the same coin. Could Oliver know King Tom's counterpart back in Motorville? Possible, but as seen above, Ding Dong Dell has something of a rat problem, so it's best not to linger on that...or is it?


2. The Cat Who Swims on the Ground (EarthBound Beginnings)


Ninten meets a number of enigmatic figures in the mystical Magicant, be it evil tree stumps, a legendary bard, a forgotten man...and yes, swimming cats. You can spot a couple swimming in the enchanted realm's waters, but it's The Cat Who Swims on the Ground that captivates us. Just how did it master the art of swimming through Magicant's cloudy landscape, and is it as blissful as it looks?


Even more impressive is how it can swim with only one paw above the ground, and so it engages Ninten in a guessing game: what does it have in the paw below? Rumors say it'll only give a prize to a girl, though. 


1. Palicoes (Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate)

The Felynes of Monster Hunter have never been afraid to hunt down meownsters, but their role as Palicoes in last year's Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate touched our hearts. Palicoes accompany the player right from the beginning, and can be customized with a wide variety of weapons and costumes. There's nothing quite as cathartic as being accompanied by a talking, fighting cat while on the prowl.

Oh, did I mention the existence of Sunset Isle, a Palico paradise where Felynes can engage in mini-games? Best of all: they can equip armor borrowed from famous video game characters via DLC. I mean, let's face it: who doesn't love dressing up their cats?


Last year, we had not one, but two Top 10 dog lists here at GameSkinny. To balance things out, here's a list featuring gaming's very best of what's really the greatest animal out there: cats, the stars of YouTube videos and meme images all across the internet.


And you can forget posers like Big the Cat or Bubsy the Bobcat; we're going to discuss the true feline stars of gaming. Who ranks among the greatest of gaming cats? The cutest? The fuzziest? The weirdest? Join us to see which cantankerous kitties made the cut.

December-January Club Nintendo Rewards Breakdown Tue, 16 Dec 2014 08:54:21 -0500 Esteban Padilla

It’s that time of year again!  No, not Christmas (…well, I guess that one too…).  I mean it’s time for the December-January wave of Club Nintendo Rewards.  From December 16th, 2014 to January 19th, 2015, Club Nintendo is offering 8 games through its Rewards program.  Each game can be purchased through the various Nintendo eShop services normally throughout the year.  But for a limited time, you can cash any Coins received through Club Nintendo for a code that lets you download a game of your choice (or more if you have the funds).  Here’s the skinny on everything being offered:

Wii U 

Kirby’s Dream Land 3 – 200 Coins or $7.99

A SNES classic, this Kirby game has features never seen in any other game in the series, the most notable being the use of animal companions.  By teaming up with each animal friend, who can be controlled by a second player, Kirby can access their unique talents to perform some tricks and attacks unavailable otherwise.  This game is perfect for some friendly co-op and at 200 Coins is a steal.

Metroid – 200 Coins or $4.99

The first in the flagship series, Metroid is a must have for that oldschool gamer that thinks games are waaaaaaaay too easy these days.  Be prepared to be hopelessly lost and die a lot without the use of an online game guide or walkthrough while exploring the labrynth of planet Zebes.  Even still, I recommend playing without the use of one and making your own maps out of pen and paper to recapture that nostalgic feeling of isolation this title beautifully created.


(NOTE: for both these games, a Classic Controller or Nintendo GameCube controller are required for each player.) 

Super Mario Kart – 250 Coins or 800 Wii Points (roughly $8)

I probably don’t need to say anything about this one.  If you were a gamer in the 90s, you played this game.  Still, it can be a blast to see how far this game (and it’s ridiculously hard AI) have come.  A solid purchase for some classic competitive play with a friend or to simply relive Nintendo’s glory days.

1080° SNOWBOARDING – 250 Coins or 1000 Wii Points (roughly $10)

Besides getting the award for the "Most Loosely Related to Christmas” game on this list, 1080° SNOWBOARDING also has the distinction of being the only game to feature an IGN review on its Club Nintendo description.  Challenging and fun with some great 2-Player competitive modes, this one is definitely worth hitting the slops for.

Nintendo 3DS 

A Kappa’s Trail – 200 Coins or $4.99

Every Club Nintendo roundup tends to offer Western audiences at least one game inspired by Japanese culture and folklore, possibly as a means to inspire cultural awareness and acceptance.  A Kappa’s Trail takes that concept on its head by having the player guide a kappa, or Japanese river spirit, through a human world.  The controls are all touch-based and the game looks freaking adorable.  If you want something unique and charming, I would pick this game.  Be sure to check back for a more detailed review.

Kid Icarus of Myths and Monsters – 150 Coins or $3.99

Long before reviving his franchise on the 3DS, Pit was staring in a sequel to his classic adventure on a much older, grayer handheld.  A forgotten gem in gaming history, Kid Icarus of Myth and Monsters may not have received as much love as the original NES hit, but is worth a second look.   Keep an eye out for a review of this one in the near future.

Bird & Beans – 150 Coins or $2.99

This DSi Ware game looks an App game that got ported to a handheld, but is actually a full version of a microgame from the WarioWare series.   The gameplay is fun enough, although simple and repetitive: you are a bird and you eat beans that fall from the sky. There’s really not much more to say about it and at 150 Coins, I would probably pass on it unless you are really into birds, beans, and minigames.

Radar Mission – 150 Coins or $2.99

Battleship has seen more than its fair share of ports to consoles.  Radar Mission takes this concept a step further and lets you jump in the submarine and wage nautical war yourself.  If you want to play more faithfully to the original, the classic gamemode is also available.  This is a fun one for anyone who loves the iconic boardgame, although a 2-Player mode is sadly missing.

Other Rewards

Besides the rotating game library, Club Nintendo offers a few physical rewards.  The big prize right now is a set of three posters based off of promo art for Super Smash Bros 3DS/Wii U for 700 Coins.  It’s a hefty price tag, but as a Club Nintendo exclusive, it may be worth it for all you die-hard collectors out there.  Similarly, you can also receive a set of Mario & Luigi or Nintendogs Greeting Cards for 300 Coins each or the (Wii exclusive) Grill-Off with Ultra Hand! minigame for 80 Coins.  Personally, I’d pass on these last three and save your coins for a different game or physical reward, since Nintendo has been known to change those too every month.

A word to the wise: I know it says that physical rewards are shipped out in two weeks or less, but in my experience, expect up to eight weeks in some cases.

To Each Gamer His/Her Own

If we’re talking about Dollar per Coin value, the best games on this list are Kirby’s Dream Land 3 and 1080° SNOWBOARDINGBirds & Beans and Radar Mission are the worst investments Coin-wise.  That being said, every gamer is different and the value of each game (especially a nostalgic classic) is determined by your favorite genres and franchises.  I myself am looking forward to trying out a Kappa’s Trail as well as reliving some SNES memories with Kirby and Super Mario Kart.

What do you think about this month’s games?  Anything stick out to you and seem like a must have?  Feeling adventurous enough to try out something you may not have played before?  Let us know in the comments below!