Review - Kirby Canvas Curse (NDS)

Discussion in 'GBAtemp Reviews & Guides' started by Volsfan91, Sep 4, 2006.

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Sep 4, 2006
  1. Volsfan91
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    Member Volsfan91 GBAtemp Regular

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    Game For Review: Kirby Canvas Curse!
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    -INTRODUCTION-
    Kirby Canvas Curse was released by the good boys at HAL Laboratory on June 12, 2005 stateside. It followed Japan release three weeks prior. Canvas Curse turned out to be one of the post-launch games that has helped propel the Nintendo DS to where it stands today. It followed Yoshi Touch and Go and Warioware Touched as the first few non-launch games to receive the prestigious IGN Editors' Choice Awards. Another fact that gamers may remember from this game is the viral marketing campaign that was placed on TV. (Link) However, experts of DS games will long remember the game's colorful art style and intuitive gameplay that has left gamers wanting even more. Regardless of how the game will be remembered, a variety of elements in this game will leave anyone who plays it stunned and wanting more.

    -GAMEPLAY-
    When it comes to any Nintendo DS game, the main thing that is often discussed is the gameplay. This is easy to explain- the DS's intuitive features open up the system to developer's wildest dreams. Kirby Canvas Curse explored these options well, especially for a game that came out approximately 6 months following the US launch of the dual screened handheld.

    Although the game uses only one of the DS's new age features (the touch screen controls), the game does it very well. In the game, Kirby has become a ball due to the Canvas Curse. Because of this, Kirby is basically a free floating ball that must be guided by the player's use of the stylus.
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    Players will draw loops, spirals, and flat lines to keep Kirby avoiding danger and ramming baddies. The defeating of enemies is an interesting system- the player must first tap the enemy, and then guide Kirby into the enemy using the rainbow stroked lines. Overall, it's a neat, fun system to play in.

    Also notable is the medals system. Players can collect medals found in the game's levels, and trade them in for extra characters, different colored lines, and many more effects. None of these are big difference makers, but I applaud HAL for including it for sheer replay value.

    Another noteworthy feature: the ability to absorb enemy's abilities. This has long been a standard of the Kirby series, and Canvas Curse finds new ways to use these abilites in a manner relevant to the gameplay style of line drawing.

    Lastly, the bosses are incredible. Massive, colorful, and creatively designed bosses are something to look forward to. All of them are beaten in a different manner. These defeating practices usually involve some sort of stretch on the user's artistic talents.

    Gameplay: 9/10

    -GRAPHICS-
    Although graphics are never much of a key selling point for a DS game, this game is outstanding in the visuals department. Every one of the levels are brightly and colorfully rendered, and showed developers what could be done with the DS's 2 dimensional engine. In my opinion, this game has served as a pacesetter for 2D visuals on the handheld.

    I don't care what anyone says- graphics are an important part of any game. (See: the reason why text based games died out) Graphics set the mood, tone, and feeling for a game, and Kirby Canvas Curse sets this up flawlessly. The intricate enviroments are really what I will always remember about this game.

    The backgrounds are what amaze me the most. All of them are meticulously designed. I can really tell that HAL made this a big point of interest on their first DS outing. I think that this screenshot well sums up the entire mood and feeling of the game:
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    Graphics: 9/10

    -SOUND-

    The best way to describe the sound of Kirby Canvas Curse is this: unmemorable. The songs are basically all the same MIDI-esque computer constructed beats. Happy, cheerful, and pleasant- the type of music that squeezes into just about any Kirby game just fine.

    I often gauge the music of a game by this: if I find myself singing/humming the music later, it's got to be good. I cannot recall one song from Canvas Curse right now off the top of my head.

    Don't get me wrong- the sound isn't bad- it's just unspectacular.

    Sound: 7.5/10

    -LASTING REPLAY-

    As I mentioned earlier, the game's medal system adds some definite, if not gimmicky replay value to the affair.

    Here's a short list of what can be attained from the medals system:
    *3 Different Line Styles. These allow the usually rainbow line to become different patterned. My favorite? The Zebra line!
    *4 Unlockable characters (I won't ruin the suprise for you!)
    *Mini-games!

    Fans of the GBA Kirby entities will be familiar with the mini-games. They are fun, and very entertaining. Unfortunately, as with many other DS games at the time, there is no multiplayer support. Seriously, what fun are mini-games without friends to play with?

    The game is also fairly lengthy, and keeps players coming back again and again to explore the worlds to get that last medal!

    Lasting Replay: 9/10

    -WRAPPING UP-

    Kirby Canvas Curse is a must own for any fans of the series, and is a great purchase for any DS owner. The intuitive gameplay, stunning visual effects, and strong ability to stay in your DS's slot are three reasons why this games is a definite hit with owners of Nintendo's latest handheld.

    RATING:

    Out of 100:
    87/100


    Explanation of mathematical rating system:
    Each category is given a priority status, so to speak. Here's the weight of each category:
    Gameplay- 4
    Graphics- 2
    Sound- 2
    Replay Value- 2

    Each of these are multiplied by the score of their category, and added together.
    For this review:
    Gameplay- 9
    Graphics- 9
    Sound- 7.5
    Replay Value- 9

    Then, this is multiplied by their weight, and added together.
    Gameplay- 9x4 (36)
    +Graphics- 9x2 (18)
    +Sound- 7.5x2 (15)
    +Replay Value- 9x2 (18)

    Added up equal.... 87/ a possible 100...

    Thus the game's score = 87/100 or 87%

    If you have any questions, criticisms, or comments on this review, let me know either through PM or through this thread!

    -Volsfan91
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