lies's Hikari Shinwa: Palutena no Kagami (Wii Shop) review

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  • lies has written a total of 9 reviews. The last one was for Halo 3: ODST

This does not end well

Talk to any gamer old enough to have owned a NES, and they will invariably tell you about how much they loved Kid Icarus. The game is regarded as a classic, and rarely a day passes without someone on the forums clamoring for a sequel. Now that the game is available for the Wii's virtual console, it's tough not to wonder why the game is held in such high regard.

Kid Icarus is best described as a mix between a side-scrolling shooter and a platformer, incorporating elements of both. The angel Pit, your character, will have to jump from ledge to ledge and use his magic bow to fight off enemies from Hell itself. While the premise isn't all that original, it's decent, and nothing to hold against the game.

The rest of Kid Icarus is a completely different story. A sadistic difficulty level, infinitely spawning enemies, and low health are the most blatant offenders, although far from the only culprits. As Pit ascends from platform to platform he must fight off his enemies with his bow. here is where the problems begin: missing a platform and falling to the bottom of the screen means instant death. It's impossible to backtrack and pick up an item or enter a door you may have missed, and enemies will spawn infinitely until you advance past their spawn point.

Fighting off enemies is a simple matter of shooting them with your bow, but even that is tougher than it sounds. Pit's arrows don't travel very far, meaning to kill an enemy you must be practically touching it, which, for obvious reasons, doesn't end well most of the time. When killed, enemies leave behind hearts which can be used to purchase upgrades and items in the game's rare shops. Some of these upgrades (Such as additional health) serve to make the game easier, but they are so difficult to obtain, it's a moot point. The rest of the game is as afflicted as the basic gameplay. Small, bland, barely animated sprites that weren't all that impressive even back during the time of the NES comprise the graphics, which hold up horribly. A single-color background and some platforms to jump between is all the scenery you'll be taking in on your journey, and the chirping, repetitive music that accompanies the bland sprites certainly doesn't help.

Overall, Kid Icarus is a sadistically difficult game, that doesn't deserve it's reputation as a classic. Underwhelming graphics, even at the time of it's release, poor sound, and bad gameplay combine to form Kid Icarus. As if adding insult to injury, Nintendo has removed several of the cheat codes from the original game, and hasn't even bothered to remove the slowdown that occurs when multiple enemies crowd the screen. Kid Icarus was a mediocre game when it released in 1987, and it's no better now, 20 years later.
4 Comments
Posted by Jurai

Nintendo probably wanted to keep emulation as true to the original hardware as possible which is why slowdown that existed is still there. Kid Icarus is a great game though, sorry you aren't that good at it.

Posted by Lies

If they wanted to keep it pure, they wouldn't have removed the cheat codes. That proves they're willing to tamper with their VC releases.

And it's nothing to do with my skill, it just wasn't a particularly great game. It was outdone on the NES, and it certainly doesn't stand up today. (Although it it sadistically hard)

Posted by Jon_Rivera

I almost completely agree with you on this review, however, I thought the art diection and musical score coupled with the RPG-like persistance made it a mediocre game at its best. But you are right that the game is broken top to bottum, or should I say, bottum to top...

Posted by Jon_Rivera
@Jurai: 
Kid Icarus is not a great game. If you want to play a great game that excels at combining multiple game play styles, this is not the game to get. Kid Icarus is a poorly designed, unbalanced, mechanically broken, and overall technically flawed game that was difficult for all the wrong reasons. It failed to meet the standards of modern gaming when it came out in 1987 and it does not stand up well today. This game is almost as bad as the NES version of Metal Gear.

Other reviews for Hikari Shinwa: Palutena no Kagami (Wii Shop)

    Eggplant wizards will make you quit 0

    Describing Kid Icarus as difficult is an understatement. The first level will take a couple of tries. The next level becomes insanely hard, mainly because of the evil eggplant wizards. You reach this maze of sorts in the second level, and in some parts of the maze are wizards that can turn Pit, the main character, into an eggplant as soon as their projectile hits. Once Pit becomes an eggplant, he has to backtrack a long way to the recovery area, a daunting task considering there is ...

    0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

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