Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards

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Game InfoBox
TheCrystalShards.jpg
Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards box art.
Details
Developer(s) HAL Laboratory
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Designer(s) Shinichi Shimomura
Release date(s) Nintendo 64
North America June 26, 2000
Japan March 24, 2000
Europe June 22, 2001
Australia June 22, 2001

Wii Virtual Console
North America February 25, 2008
Japan April 15, 2008
Europe March 7, 2008
Australia March 7, 2008

Kirby's Dream Collection
North America September 16, 2012[1]
Japan July 19, 2012[2]

Wii U Virtual Console
North America July 30, 2015
Japan August 19, 2015
Europe June 25, 2015
Australia June 26, 2015

Platform(s) Nintendo 64, Wii Virtual Console, Wii U Virtual Console
Game Chronology
<-- Kirby's Dream Land 3 Kirby Tilt 'n' Tumble -->
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Guide/Walkthrough Link
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Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards is a platformer featuring Kirby and some of his friends, produced by HAL Laboratory and released in 2000 for the Nintendo 64. It is notable for being the first installment in the Kirby series to depict Kirby and his surroundings in full 3D, although only for visual effects. Also the development of this game was not directed by Masahiro Sakurai.

Story

Ribbon's escape.

The story of Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards begins on a far away planet called Ripple Star, which is inhabited by fairy-like beings. The inhabitants of Ripple Star are also the guardians of a powerful crystal. Shortly before the game begins, an ill-willed creature called Dark Matter attacks Ripple Star. Concerned with the crystal's safety, the Fairy Queen asks Ribbon, a young fairy, to take the crystal and escape to a safe place with it. Ribbon obeys her ruler, but as she flies off, she is pursued by Dark Matter. Eventually, the powerful being is able to assault Ribbon, which destroys the crystal and splits it into several Crystal Shards. Meanwhile, Ribbon crash-lands on Pop Star, Kirby's home planet.

Ribbon, explaining her trouble to Kirby.

It is not long before Ribbon meets Kirby, as she unintentionally uses him to break her fall. After both of them find and merge two of the Crystal Shards, Ribbon explains her misery to Kirby, who instantly agrees to help out. While they search for the missing shards on Pop Star, they manage to add a Waddle Dee, an artist girl called Adeleine, and even Kirby's arch rival King Dedede to their cause. The group then travels to several planets to look for shards, using the crystal's transportation powers.

The Fairy Queen, controlled by Dark Matter.

After traveling through several regions on numerous planets, the group finally gets the chance to travel to Ripple Star. The planet has become covered in thick, black clouds and is generally in a bad state. The Fairy Queen herself has been possessed by Dark Matter, which the group remains unaware of. Ribbon is visibly shocked to see her home planet in such a condition, but the rest of the group quickly comforts her. They then journey to Ripple Star together, where they battle their way into the palace and confront Miracle Matter, the apparent master of the Dark Matter. Kirby finally manages to defeat the foe and restore peace to the fairy planet. The Fairy Queen remains influenced by the Dark Matter, however, and after Kirby and his friends leave the planet to return home in a spaceship, the queen can be seen giving Ribbon a malicious glare.

The ending changes if Kirby and his friends manage to collect all of the Crystal Shards. If they do this successfully, the restored crystal reveals the possession of the Fairy Queen, and expels the Dark Matter from her body. The remaining Dark Matter then flies off into space, where it forms a new world called Dark Star. Intending to destroy the dark threat, the group travels into the heart of Dark Star with Kirby's Warp Star. Inside the black cloud, Kirby uses the abilities of his friends for one last time. Eventually, Kirby and Ribbon engage Zero Two, the master of Dark Matter and an angelic version of Kirby's old enemy Zero, in a fierce battle. The two of them manage to defeat the creature with the help of the Crystal Shards, though, and Dark Matter is eliminated. To thank the heroes for their efforts, the Fairy Queen awards each of them with a piece of the crystal. In the end, Kirby receives a kiss from Ribbon.

Gameplay

Kirby, creating a Power Combo.

Despite the fact that Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards features full 3D graphics for the first time, the game itself still plays like a 2D sidescroller. The players control Kirby's movements with the Directional Pad. This way he is able to walk, run, and crouch. Pressing the A button causes Kirby to jump, and another press of the button lets him inflate himself, making him able to fly. However, unlike in the previous games where Kirby was granted to fly for an infinite amount of time, this game limits his potential. After a set amount of time, he will automatically deflate himself and has to touch the ground first to be able to fly again. Pressing the B button makes Kirby use his signature inhaling attack, which lets him defeat enemies, destroy blocks, and copy abilities (given that the inhaled enemy possesses one). The game makes another distinction from its predecessors here, giving Kirby only seven different abilities to copy, as opposed to the vast ability pool of other games. However, by inhaling enemies, Kirby can create ability stars, which he can spit at other enemies. If an ability star connects to another enemy with an ability, the two abilities will merge and form a Power Combo. By combining abilities, Kirby can master 49 different abilities, plus the seven base abilities, making a total of 56 abilities. If the players choose they no longer need an ability, they can throw it away by pressing the L, R, or any C button.

The game features six worlds, or planets, with respectively four levels and one boss fight. From the beginning, only the first level of Pop Star is available. In every level, there are three Crystal Shards to be found. The Crystal Shards are often hidden in remote places or behind obstacles that can be destroyed only by a certain ability (usually indicated by the obstacle's color). Finding all the Crystal Shards isn't necessary to complete the game, but it is essentially in getting a 100% complete, and finding all 80 Crystal Shards (72 from every level, six from every boss, and two during the intro) unlocks the true ending of the game.

Characters

The hero party.

Enemies

Enemies Bosses

Minibosses

Planet Bosses

Locations

Copy Abilities

Regular Powers

Name Appearance Icon Function
Burn K64 A Burn.png K64 Base Burn.png Engulfs Kirby into a fireball and lets him fly a short distance.
Stone K64 A Stone.png K64 Base Stone.png Gives Kirby a hide of stone which lets him walk through enemies unharmed.
Ice K64 A Ice.png K64 Base Ice.png Makes Kirby exhale a cold breath which can freeze enemies solid.
Needle K64 A Needle.png K64 Base Needle.png Transforms Kirby into a spiky ball that can pierce enemies.
Bomb K64 A Bomb.png K64 Base Bomb.png Gives Kirby an arsenal of explosives to throw at enemies.
Spark K64 A Spark.png K64 Base Spark.png Lets Kirby generate a small force field of electricity around him.
Cutter K64 A Cutter.png K64 Base Cutter.png Gives Kirby a boomerang to throw at his foes. Since the boomerang is a part of him, he can throw only one at a time.

Power Combos

Name Appearance Icon Function
Burn-Burn K64 A DoubleBurn.png K64 PC DoubleBurn.png Transforms Kirby into a large fireball and lets him fly over a long distance.
Burn-Stone K64 A BurnStone.png K64 PC BurnStone.png Lets Kirby shoot burning rocks at enemies like a volcano. The direction can be altered with the Directional Pad.
Burn-Ice K64 A BurnIce.png K64 PC BurnIce.png Changes Kirby into a burning ice cube that instantly melts.
Burn-Needle K64 A BurnNeedle.png K64 PC BurnNeedle.png Transforms Kirby into a bow that shoots flaming arrows at enemies. The angle can be altered by holding down the B Button.
Burn-Bomb K64 A BurnBomb.png K64 PC BurnBomb.png Lets Kirby summon three fireworks explosions that defeat enemies and have a great range.
Burn-Spark K64 A BurnStpark.png K64 PC BurnSpark.png Kirby rubs his head with a tinder sheet and lights it on fire, running about and damaging any enemies he makes contact with.
Burn-Cutter K64 BurnCutter.png K64 PC BurnCutter.png Gives Kirby a flaming sword to wield against enemies. The sword can be swung, hold over the head, and thrown at enemies.
Stone-Stone K64 A DoubleStone.png K64 PC DoubleStone.png Transforms Kirby into a giant version of himself, made of rocks. Can pass most enemies unharmed.
Stone-Ice K64 A StoneIce.png K64 PC StoneIce.png Transforms Kirby into a curling stone that slides through enemies.
Stone-Needle K64 A StoneNeedle.png K64 PC StoneNeedle.png Gives Kirby a giant drill that can be used against enemies. The drill head can also be launched forward.
Stone-Bomb K64 A StoneBomb.png K64 PC StoneBomb.png Lets Kirby use dynamite that defeats all enemies on screen. When the dynamite explodes, Kirby needs to protect himself or he gets hurt as well.
Stone-Spark K64 A StoneSpark.png K64 PC StoneSpark.png Lets Kirby summon a giant rock which he controls with a leash of electricity. The Rock soars through the air and bounces off of walls and floors.
Stone-Cutter K64 A StoneCutter.png K64 PC StoneCutter.png Transforms Kirby into stone figurines of his friends from Kirby's Dream Land 3. The various animals possess different abilities.
Ice-Ice K64 A DoubleIce.png K64 PC DoubleIce.png Transforms Kirby into a rolling snow ball that grows in size and runs over any enemy on its way. The direction cannot be changed.
Ice-Needle K64 A IceNeedle.png K64 PC IceNeedle.png Lets Kirby hide inside a giant snowflake made of ice. Possesses great range, but is slow and makes Kirby unable to move.
Ice-Bomb K64 A IceBomb.png K64 PC IceBomb.png Transforms Kirby into a walking snowman. The snowman eventually explodes, taking out enemies nearby.
Ice-Spark K64 A IceSpark.png K64 PC IceSpark.png Changes Kirby into a refrigerator that generates healing food. The thrown food can also damage enemies.
Ice-Cutter K64 A IceCutter.png K64 PC IceCutter.png Gives Kirby a pair of skates and lets him ice-skate through levels. He can also twist jump when the A Button is pressed.
Needle-Needle K64 A DoubleNeedle.png K64 PC DoubleNeedle.png Gives Kirby the ability to use various pointy objects against enemies.
Needle-Bomb K64 A NeedleBomb.png K64 PC NeedleBomb.png Transforms Kirby into a Gordo that can float through the air. After a short time the Gordo will explode and launch its spikes across the screen.
Needle-Spark K64 A NeedleSpark.png K64 PC NeedleSpark.png Lets Kirby change into a lightning conductor and summon a bolt that fries enemies.
Needle-Cutter K64 A NeedleCutter.png K64 PC NeedleCutter.png Transforms Kirby into a giant bear trap with two big spiky arms. The arms snap together once the B Button is released.
Bomb-Bomb K64 A DoubleBomb.png K64 PC DoubleBomb.png Changes Kirby into a rocket launcher that shoots three missiles. The missiles home in on enemies.
Bomb-Spark K64 A BombSpark.png K64 PC BombSpark.png Lets Kirby transform into a light bulb. The bulb can attack enemies, as well as lighten up dark rooms.
Bomb-Cutter K64 A BombCutter.png K64 PC BombCutter.png Gives Kirby an arsenal of shuriken that can be thrown at enemies. The projectiles explode when they make contact with something.
Spark-Spark K64 A DoubleSpark.png K64 PC DoubleSpark.png Lets Kirby generate a giant electrical force field around himself that calls lightning down upon enemies. The force field shrinks if Kirby moves around while using it.
Spark-Cutter K64 A SparkCutter.png K64 PC SparkCutter.png Gives Kirby a double-bladed lightsaber which he can wield against enemies. Crouching will discard the lightsaber.
Cutter-Cutter K64 A DoubleCutter.png K64 PC DoubleCutter.png Gives Kirby a greater boomerang to throw at his enemies. Only one boomerang can be thrown at a time.
Fairy Wings-Crystal Gun K64 A WingCrystal.png K64 PC WingCrystal.png An ability that is usable only during the final battle against Zero Two. It lets Kirby and Ribbon fly around while shooting crystal projectiles at the enemy.


Mini-Games

Kirby 64 also features three Mini-Games that can be played with up to four players. The games are as follows:

  • 100-Yard Hop: A game where players hop over obstacles in a race to the finish.
  • Bumper Crop Bump: A game where players shove each-other to catch falling fruit.
  • Checkerboard Chase: A game where players try to make the stage crumble under their opponents' feet.

Trivia

  • Although this was the first 3-D Kirby game, Kirby's actual first 3-D appearance was in Super Smash Bros. for the Nintendo 64. His appearance in that game served as direct inspiration for the way he looked and sounded in this game.
  • Kirby visits many worlds throughout the course of this game's storyline. One in particular, Shiver Star, bears an uncanny resemblance to our own planet, Earth, albeit frozen over.
    • Each world that is visited contains the word 'Star' at the end of its name. Two in particular, Pop Star and Rock Star, are likely puns referring to celebrities in music.

External Links

References

  1. Tweet by Nintendo of America - "Celebrate Kirby’s 20th anniversary w/ Kirby’s Dream Collection Special Edition on 9/16! Get info at the 8:57 mark."
  2. Nintendo - Release Calendar 2012 July