The Wii is regularly rejected for its below par graphics when compared to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, but every now and then a game comes along that even all the naysayers can love. The most recent example has absolutely nothing to do with HD realism, but rather with a whimsical and wonderful visual style.
Featuring the return of a classic pink Nintendo character, Kirby’s Epic Yarn is arguably one of the most visually striking games of the year, if not of all time. With a unique style and adorable gameplay, it brought the pink puff back to the big leagues, and it might not be the last that we see of that stylized world.
According to Tadashi Ikegami, manager of HAL Laboraoty, other Nintendo properties could be getting the Epic Yarn treatment, specifically a mustachioed plumber.
In a fairly recent edition of “Iwata Asks” focusing on Kirby’s new adventure, Satoru Iwata asked what the developers thought of the visual style. Ikegami said:
“When I first saw them, I thought they were perfect for Kirby. I think there's a lot of potential for expanding this style to other series, like making a game called Mario's Epic Yarn. That's how well I thought the foundation had been laid, so I was really happy that from among all the characters available it was Kirby who was chosen.”
Ikegami also confesses jealousy over the fact that he or HAL hadn’t thought of it first, but he was still extremely thankful to have been involved.
With Mario prominently leading the 2D renaissance, I’d say that he is the go-to character when it comes to being adapted to side-scrolling platformers in different graphical styles. On the other hand, I kind of want to see the style be unique to Kirby — especially since Mario appears in a plethora of games every year and even has his own visually unique niche with the Paper Mario series. Kirby has had rough luck when it comes to starring in console games, and it would be nice to see the series remain specific to the pink puff.
If Nintendo ends up pursuing the idea, a perfect suggestion would be for an update of Yoshi’s Story to the Epic Yarn standards — especially since the N64 game had a very similar style.
If there are any other characters you'd like to see get a yarn makeover, let us know in the comments.
Kirby’s Epic Yarn is available now for the Wii.