Developed by: HAL Laboratory
Published by: Nintendo
Platforms: Game Boy, 3DS Virtual Console
Feeling Like: A new set of wings
Since there are still two more Kirby games left on the 500, we’re not going to talk much about my favorite Smash Brother here.
We’re going to talk about Coo, or, the best reason to play Kirby’s Dream Land 2.
Kirby’s Dream Land 2 is better in every way when compared to its predecessor. Kirby can absorb powers of enemies, instead of just eating them or spitting them out. The music is better, it has more levels and, of course, it has the animal buddies. A hamster, a fish and Coo, the bad ass owl.
In a stroke of genius, you can use Kirby’s powers while being talloned by Coo, turning flimsy, airborne traversey into death from above style attacking, complete with a theme song that is among the Game Boy’s best. It’s not the most original idea, but Kirby’s version of Yoshi totally stuck with me. Much like in any of the Donkey Kong Country games, when I saw an animal buddy, I knew business was about to pick up. Anytime Coo appeared, my interest spiked sharply and reiterated how great a game this is. Not only did it change up the monotony of jumping and running, but the levels were appropriately designed so I wasn’t just free flying with Coo, I had to duck, weave and attack enemies that are explicitly entrenched in the anti-air category. Nicely done.
The timing of the release seems strange, doesn’t it? This was 1995, two years after Kirby’s Adventure appeared on the NES and four years after the Super Nintendo launched. Fans may have had a hard time going back to it, but I suppose they figured that Metroid 2: Return of Samus satisfied fans enough to test out the same strategy with Kirby’s Dreamland 2 (four years later).
Since the overly cute slapstick was one of my favorite parts of Kirby’s Dreamland, I’m happy to report a lot of the same skits exists here. Seeing Kirby voicelessly interact with Coo and the other two, mostly through some physical shenanigans, was hilarious. I like the other carry overs, like the exact same animation death and music, or the Sun and Moon boss from Kirby’s Adventure. There’s enough new and old to appease Kirby fans everywhere and this is one of the stronger Kirby games as a result.
I love owls and I love Kirby. I was sorry to see Owlboy wasn’t a Coo spinoff, but it was close enough to warrant a 414 rating on the 500. As long as you don’t Youtube Owls eating something, Owls are the best of birds. They hunt like killers, they can poof up ridiculously, they can smile when being pet and they are drop dead gorgeous. Check out this photo, snapped by our buddy Jeff. It resides in our TV room, to remind myself that Owls are always cool enough to warrant capitalizing on my blog.