The Kirby series is a favorite of mine, and I’ve played every game in the series through Epic Yarn several times with the exception of the Crystal Shards (I did not have an N64 and never bothered to buy one). Unlike the other premier platformers Nintendo makes the Kirby games are pretty easy which I appreciate because it allows me to just sit back and enjoy them with no hair tearing action. Plus, Kirby is stupidly cute and the theme music makes me irrationally happy.
Kirby’s Epic Yarn is incredibly successful in every aspect of being a Kirby game and is just immense amounts of fun. My criteria here aren’t any kind of world wide standard so I’ll run through my checklist:
[ X ] Easy, but not boring.
The biggest challenge with making low difficulty level games is keeping them interesting. There have to be some mild challenges which is achieved through boss fights, but the gameplay has to be good enough that it doesn’t matter if you breeze through levels. Kirby’s Epic Yarn does this with diverse level settings, user interactions with the environments and light puzzles. There is a music themed level where walking across or jumping on instruments plays little tunes. It doesn’t really matter that the world isn’t full of deathtraps when you’re having fun traveling through it.
[ X ] Whimsical, but not overly cutsey.
Kirby is a series for youngins, the rest of us are just joining them along on the ride. However for the games to be successful they have to appeal to people older than five years old, and that means they can’t be the video game version of a Benji movie. The cutscenes are a bit much but skippable (though I recommend watching the Meta Knight one, I thought it was very funny) and the game itself is adorable but not overwhelming. The different styles of quilting for the worlds are beautiful with a splash of cute.
[ X ] A large variety of powers to defeat enemies
Since the second Kirby game you’ve been able to suck enemies up and absorb their powers, which is not a feature of Epic Yarn. To make up for this there are several mini-game areas of levels where Kirby transforms into vehicles such as the all time classic UFO and takes a break from the straightforward platforming.
[X] You fight King Dedede
Can’t forget about this one, although it is really a nice to have rather than a critical item! All the bosses you expect to find in a Kirby game make appearances though they are not the end level fights of the past. And yes this includes the annoying thunder cloud thing with an eye, who is as aggravating in Epic Yarn as he is in all the other games.
Beyond the check-list Epic Yarn also has a very good soundtrack that really compliments the levels. The music is not necessarily something that you’ll want to listen to when you’re not playing but it’s perfect for traversing through the game. An added bonus, if you will.
Nothing in Epic Yarn will blow your mind the way that the levels in say, Super Mario Galaxy do but it is a different kind of genius and deserves a playthrough. If you aren’t at least a little charmed by Kirby’s world, you are probably some kind of frozen heart villain like Mr. Freeze.