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3D Classics: Kid Icarus review

Why 3D Classics: Kid Icarus is an angel delight

While many of us are looking forward to the return of Pit in Kid Icarus: Uprising, it's fair to say that most younger gamers aren't really familiar with Nintendo's angelic one-time star (his appearance in Super Smash Bros Brawl aside).

That's because his last starring role, the Game Boy platformer Kid Icarus: Of Myths And Monsters, was released more than 20 years ago, meaning a whole generation of gamers have gone through life without ever seeing a Kid Icarus game.

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To remedy this, Nintendo has released 3D Classics: Kid Icarus - a fancy 3D remaster of the NES game that gave Pit his first big break - as a way of showing younger gamers what all the fuss was about back in the day while also reminding older gamers why Pit's been missed over the years.

Fore those new to it, 3D Classics: Kid Icarus Kid Icarus is a mostly vertical-scrolling platformer created by the same team behind Metroid.

You play as Pit, a young angel imprisoned in the Underworld by the evil Medusa, who plans on taking over Angel Land.

Summoned by Palutena, the Goddess Of Light, Pit breaks out of prison and has to travel out of the Underworld and towards the Sky World, where he can find and defeat Medusa.

Pit Fighter

As you start to play through the game you'll quickly notice one thing - Kid Icarus is tough. It's not quite Mega Man levels of cruelty but Pit can be a slippery character to handle at times, especially when jumping between narrow platforms.

To make matters worse, the screen will only ever scroll upwards and never downwards so as you climb ever upwards through the level there's essentially a bottomless pit moving up with you. One missed jump and you'll fall off the bottom of the screen, plummeting to your instant doom.

Once you get the hang of things though, Kid Icarus becomes greatly satisfying. The 3D effect is subtle but looks nice enough (all it does is add some scenery to what used to be a completely black background), and the music is incredible - leave the screen running when it says "PUSH START BUTTON" for possibly the greatest piece of NES-style orchestral music ever created - and firing arrows at the various weird and wonderful creatures you encounter is as fun as ever.

Meanwhile, 3D Classics: Kid Icarus has some mildly RPG-style elements in that you can upgrade your weaponry and items as you progress, and the multiple endings - depending on how well you play through the game - remain, complete with a new scoring system encouraging multiple plays.

It still has one or two small niggles. Some enemies will appear right under your feet, causing you to lose health a little cheaply, and the File Selection screen is a bit of a mess and is far more fiddly than it needs to be.

For the most part though, this is a fun little piece of Nintendo history that still holds up fairly well 25 years after its original release.

Comments

22 comments so far...
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  1. Redfish20 Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 17:15

    I've made it all the way to level 3 but still loving it! It has definitely aged better than Metroid and the new and improved backgrounds are a nice touch.

  2. ARWING64 Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 17:19

    I would get it for free but for some stupid reason my MK7 code won't work in Club Nintendo so I'll have to buy it when it comes out!

    Forget that; my code works and its on its way :D

  3. Yoshifan007 Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 17:24

    using the screenshot from uprising is false advertisement you know. which is against the law

  4. Waldy565 Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 17:33

    but Pit can be a slippery character to handle at times, especially when jumping between narrow platforms. Defo!! but i still love it, wanna play it now, but 3ds charging... :(

  5. torterratrainer Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 17:52

    oh my god im on the first level and i constantly die even with full health. im not falling down so why am i diing

  6. FamilyGAMEGuy8 Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 18:02

    I would've got it if only they allowed games that had already previously been added to club Nintendo...I put the codes for Zelda and Pilotwings in August. I only had Mario Kart to do in December...

  7. paultheotherone Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 19:08

    I did not find this game enjoyable at all. Having never played it before, 86% is way too generous. They should have added restart points and changed the collision detection etc. It's repetitive in a bad way, frustrating, and provides no incentive to finish it. Nice 3d backrounds cannot hide a poor gaming experience.

  8. leomckitten Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 19:13

    I've registered a couple of games, but I've not got a code e-mailed to me yet. Hm...

  9. CraigEmberson Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 20:25

    Don't get me wrong, it's a great game... but my problem is dying and having to start the level again, they should have let you reappear in the same position or have checkpoints.

  10. ChrisONM Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 20:55

    I did not find this game enjoyable at all. Having never played it before, 86% is way too generous. They should have added restart points and changed the collision detection etc. It's repetitive in a bad way, frustrating, and provides no incentive to finish it. Nice 3d backrounds cannot hide a poor gaming experience.


    That's the great thing about opinions then, we're each entitled to them. :)

    Personally, I don't see a problem with the collision detection and I feel restart points would have ruined what's supposed to be a difficult game.

  11. CyberGW Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 21:14

    I'm 13 and I'm on Stage 3-4. Pretty pleased with myself, it's not an easy game! :D
    The backgrounds are great, the music is superb and it really is pretty fun. The bosses are just so hard!
    I'm really struggling with this third boss, I got it down to 36 health once but then died. :(
    Gonna have a sit down with it tomorrow.

  12. CyberGW Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 21:22

    I feel restart points would have ruined what's supposed to be a difficult game.


    I completely agree.
    Although it is pretty tough and sometimes can get slightly frustrating, the sense of achievement you get from completing a level is much bigger than most games now.
    Restart Points would have ruined the challange, I've set myself a task of completing this before I play Uprising. I don't want to skip any corners and get it easier than the real game is.
    Here's hoping we get the Game Boy Kid Icarus on Virtual Console soon, really enjoying the series! :D Thanks for bringing it back Nintendo!

  13. paultheotherone Friday 13th Jan 2012 at 22:18

    I did not find this game enjoyable at all. Having never played it before, 86% is way too generous. They should have added restart points and changed the collision detection etc. It's repetitive in a bad way, frustrating, and provides no incentive to finish it. Nice 3d backrounds cannot hide a poor gaming experience.


    That's the great thing about opinions then, we're each entitled to them. :)

    Personally, I don't see a problem with the collision detection and I feel restart points would have ruined what's supposed to be a difficult game.

    I don't mind challenging games....but unfair games due to (imo) design flaws is different. I tried to enjoy it but after the umpteenth time of just falling through a platform for no apparent reason to death after having got so far in the level-well to me that is bad collision detection.

  14. mcr-soldier Saturday 14th Jan 2012 at 09:19

    I've registered two games but I haven't received an email :/

  15. Shinnos Saturday 14th Jan 2012 at 14:13

    I haven't had any problems with collision detection. I'm really enjoying this game. Yes, it's hard, and frustrating when you make it so far up only to die and end up back at the bottom, but it still has that "Just one more go..." appeal, and as someone else said, the sense of achievement when you complete a level is something that is often sadly missing from modern games. And the music is awesome!

  16. thelostmariobro Sunday 15th Jan 2012 at 22:36

    Is anyone able to find where you have to put your email address for the code at the moment? Or is that section of the site down?

  17. ARWING64 Monday 16th Jan 2012 at 11:10

    Do the passwords still work?

  18. imbusydoctorwho Wednesday 18th Jan 2012 at 21:41

    Kid Icarus is fantastic,but it's pretty hard.

  19. geengy Friday 20th Jan 2012 at 14:31

    I can't get off the first level .A.

  20. Deep4t Saturday 21st Jan 2012 at 13:49

    I just finished the game, and I can say its brilliant.

    but. it's really really easy. apart from the first levels, I think they're the hardest in the game.
    since you have little health, and the grim reapers are the hardest enemies and they only appear on the first world.

    bit silly that, once you get into it though, it's a classic and I regret never getting far into it as a kid

  21. PuAl Wednesday 1st Feb 2012 at 23:45

    @paultheotherone

    You haven't been falling through platforms for no reason. If you're standing on a platform that you can jump through and press down on the d-pad (or down on the circle pad, which is very easy to accidentally do) then you drop down through the platform. It's part of the controls, and I believe it's noted in the instruction manual too. That's not a design flaw. Easy mistake to make, but sadly a mistake nonetheless.

  22. MarioKartVader Sunday 8th Apr 2012 at 15:07

    This is a fantastic game. I can't get by the first boss though, and the 3D doesn't add much to the game. I'd give it 90%

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