Handheld Chronicles #6-Kirby’s Dream Land

Now listen, kids, I know this may come as quite the shock to you, but as a longtime staff writer here at Retro Obscura, I have become quite the commodity, quite the “literary superstar” in the world of professional retro gaming writing. I don’t want to brag or anything, but Rob McCallum appreciated the fact that I appreciated his documentary Nintendo Quest, and let me tell you, that Robbie McDaddy (we’re practically BFFs) doesn’t throw appreciative words around like they’re green turtle shells and he’s out to give Nick Stephens 6 more months of therapy. That’s just the tip of the iceberg too. I’ve become so prolific in creating Rob Luther jokes that he know has enough royalty money to practically retire from all non-TMNT podcasts and put Grayson through college. I mean, how great is that? Not only am I a skilled warrior of words, nearly as deadly as an early morning Erik Purscell coastal village Viking raid, but I’m all about giving back to all the people I graciously stepped over to get here.

Ah, where was I? Oh yeah, I’d like to thank the Academy..

Actually, I guess, per contractual obligations with Aaron “Flashin’ Dem Gang Signs” Hickman, I should write another article..or 50. You know how it goes, you write one article, you write 50. All in a day’s work. So today we’re going to look at Kirby’s Dream Land on the Gameboy, a title responsible for many dead batteries in my Gameboy during my youth, but the question remains, is our favorite fluffy friend still as fun to play on the Gameboy all these years later? Somebody tell Stephens to leave those poor chili dogs alone, because we’re going back to the Gameboy and Kirby’s Dream Land!!

KDL_Boxart

Sound:8
Kirby games have always had some great music, but I’m sure at the time many people wondered if it could be duplicated on a smaller scale for the Gameboy, but thankfully their fears were unreasonable and Kirby’s Dream Land continues where the console counterparts leave off with some well rounded and well crafted compositions that fit every level like a glove. In addition, the soundtrack also has some tunes that suit the mood and situation of the game, like boss battles for instance, which is a nice touch. The sound effects are pretty simple but still do a solid job of rounding out what your ears are treated to on those tiny Gameboy speakers.

Graphics:8
One might say that graphically Kirby’s Dream Land is nothing too special to look at, but in truth it seems the further you go in the same the more brilliant the design work is, with levels that take you to islands and even to the clouds and the stars themselves, which is actually pretty impressive for a game that is nearly 25 years old. Kirby looks great, which is to be expected, and the variety of enemies and bosses is a solid lineup of bad guys. Kirby’s Dream Land may be a more compact version of its console counterparts, but that doesn’t mean developers slacked on the artistry presented here, which for a Gameboy game shows great dedication by the team behind Kirby’s Dream Land.

Gameplay:8
Again, Kirby’s Dream Land is not a very long game, nor is it incredibly difficult, which may turn off some gamers, but what I love about it is that it is a terrific game for parents to teach their children of the many great handheld titles they played during their youth, and it has an extra game feature that makes the game a tad bit more difficult the second time around, and thus increases replay value, which is something not found on a lot of original Gameboy titles. I mean, seriously, finding great replay value on a Gameboy game is about as rare as finding a photo of Kyle Murphy without a rainbow penetrating his brain.

Now I told Kyle not to insert that dirty old coin, but did he listen? No, of course not. Now he's got Rainbow Brite crap in his brain. Way to go, butthead.
Now I told Kyle not to insert that dirty old coin, but did he listen? No, of course not. Now he’s got Rainbow Brite crap in his brain. Way to go, butthead.

Overall: 8
Kirby’s Dream Land is far from a dream, it is the reality of what great developers, composers, and artists could do with the right motivation and attention to gamers on the original Gameboy, and this game continued to build the strong fan following Kirby still has today. While the Gameboy has a vast library of great titles, you’d be foolish to ignore this one. Copies are fairly inexpensive and this is still one of my favorite games to enjoy when I just want to kick back, relax, and enjoy some time with my Gameboy.

Well, that does it for me. Next time, as per request of someone who stares lovingly at birthday cakes..

"Loving you..is easy cuz' you're beautiful..."
“Loving you..is easy cuz’ you’re beautiful…”

We take a look at a game that I am certain encouraged him to become a pillaging pirate while SMASHING things (get it?) Smash TV on the Sega Game Gear.

Welcome to the club(sandwich), Erik.

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