It has been nearly twenty years since we last saw Pit starring in his own game (the last title being Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters on the Game Boy), even though he has featured in other games (including some of the WarioWare titles and Super Smash Bros. Brawl), the star of the classic Kid Icarus series has finally returned in the long awaited sequel.
While there has been several big changes compared to the first title in these games, the game remains a well worthy purchase for 3DS owners and fans and newcomers should find something they enjoy here.
Masahiro Sakurai has taken control over the development over this game after his work on the Super Smash Bros. series, Meteos and some of the Kirby games, he has directed the series into an interesting direction in terms of the story and the gameplay itself.
The story takes place sometime after the events of the first game and Pit must help the goddess Palutena to defeat the resurrected Medusa and her army of demonic creatures throughout the world. Despite the story serving a way to explore different areas, the structure is always kept interesting with sections where you would often team up with the human Magnus, fighting against new enemies in every chapter and sometimes riding powerful vehicles.
In itself, the story and structure of the single player mode offers enough excitement and content to play through, especially since there are a lot of items and weapons to find, take on various difficulty challenges to gain some great rewards, the ability to purchase new weapons for your arsenal and fusing your various items to create new and powerful weapons to get the most out of a lengthy single player mode.
But what should be addressed are the controls that Sakurai and his team decided to focus on that might be a problem to some people and did affect my enjoyment during heated combat.
You use the circle pad to move Pit around the screen and use the left shoulder pad to fire off your attacks, while using the touch screen to move your cursor for aiming your attacks at the enemies. While the flying sections of the game don’t really prove to be too much of a problem as it’s an on-rails shooter, but it’s when you have to move on land that makes it a tad irritating at times. This is because you have to move the camera as well as using the cursor to aim your attacks and can be a little disappointing when fighting against a lot of enemies in a small area of the level, even though you have more freedom to move Pit around these levels.
After playing for some time, I did get some aches in my hands due to the awkwardness of holding the console with just one hand. Even though the game does come with a stand and is recommended if you want to play for more than an hour, it’s a shame that the only alternative controls for the game requires the Circle Pad Pro attachment.
It’s a bit of a shame that the controls were not as comfortable as they could be and even though I really wanted to play intensely with the game, I unfortunately couldn’t due to the aches in my hands. But Nintendo has made sure that the game has a lot of features and content for gamers to be kept entertained.
As well as the stand, there is a booster pack with some AR cards for you to use with the 3DS’ camera to see the characters come to life and you can even use your Nintendo Points in the Nintendo Club website to collect additional AR cards.
There are also some great local and online multiplayer modes that offer a surprisingly great amount of quality and you can use your customized weapons from the main game to use against opponents or work in teams.
StreetPass and SpotPass are used to a great effect once again as you can exchange weapon gems to get new items and unlockables within the game.
The overall quality and quantity of Kid Icarus Uprising makes this one of the best titles currently available for the 3DS, with big levels to explore, top action sequences, a huge roster of collectables and a wide variety of modes.
It’s a shame that the controls do get in the way of the final rating, but rest assured that this is a great return for the Kid Icarus series and I hope Nintendo will make sequels to their other classic retro games.