Kirby's Dream Land
Kirby's Dream Land is a platforming video game released on the Game Boy and the first installment of the Kirby series. Kirby's Dream Land was developed by HAL Laboratory, published by Nintendo, and designed by Masahiro Sakurai. Since its release, Kirby's Dream Land had consistently been the series' most successful installment, having sold over 5.13 million copies worldwide since its release, though this distinction would eventually fall to Kirby and the Forgotten Land in September 2022. It was also later released as a Player's Choice title. In 2011, Kirby's Dream Land was released as one of the launch titles on the Nintendo 3DS's Virtual Console. In 2012, Kirby's Dream Land was included as one of the playable games in the Wii compilation title, Kirby's Dream Collection Special Edition.
Kirby's Dream Land is a side-scrolling platformer title, and follows suit from other such video games of the age, with a few key differences. The game - and its titular protagonist - are designed with beginners in mind. Instead of restricting the player to a single jump and limited attacks, Kirby is able to hover indefinitely in the air to get over bottomless pits and other hazards. He is also fairly hardy, able to take several hits before being defeated, whereas most other platformers would have the character defeated in one or two hits. Kirby is also equipped with his trusty inhale, which allows him to simply eat most of the enemies on his path, and spit them out to defeat other enemies. As such, Kirby's Dream Land is easy to complete, with only five levels and relatively easy boss fights interspersed, but a hidden bonus version of the game lets players go through again against tougher enemies.
|“||On a tiny star somewhere far, far away from earth[sic], there is a very special place known as Dream Land. The Dream Landers are very happy people who use their magical Sparkling Stars to play and work among the heavens. That is until one dark night when the gluttonous King Dedede and his rotten band of thieves swooped down from neighboring Mt. Dedede for a midnight snack in Dream Land.||”|
— Kirby's Dream Land Instruction Booklet (North American print), page 3
Kirby's Dream Land takes place in the land of Dream Land, where all the people live happy lives. One day, a band of thieves, led by King Dedede, swoops down from Mt. Dedede and steals all the food from the land, as well as the Sparkling Stars from the sky. Kirby cannot stand for this and heads to Mt. Dedede to retrieve the stolen goods and save Dream Land.
Kirby travels through five areas of Dream Land to reach King Dedede. At the end of each land, Kirby must do battle with one of King Dedede's top goons, in the form of a Boss, who will drop one of the Sparkling Stars upon defeat. After defeating Dedede and collecting the last of these stars, Kirby uses them to inflate into a giant hot air balloon, and carry Dedede's castle all across the land, showering the stolen food back onto the kingdom. That done, Kirby returns to normal size and lands on a podium, to be cheered by the denizens of Dream Land, who look an awful lot like him.
Kirby's Dream Land is a two-dimensional platforming game set in the whimsical fantasy realm of Dream Land. The player controls Kirby and must successfully complete each stage by getting this spry round fellow to the end - avoiding attacks from enemies before losing all of his vitality points to them - and defeating the boss at the end of each stage. To accomplish this, Kirby has a fair amount of abilities at his disposal; able to walk, fly, and let out an Air Bullet or use a Dive Attack to defeat nearby opponents. Kirby can also use his signature inhale to dispose of enemies and objects, though he cannot fly while something is in his mouth.
By inhaling an enemy or object, Kirby can either spit them back out as a Star Bullet to defeat other enemies and destroy obstacles, or Kirby can swallow the inhaled object to remove it from the equation. However, when swallowing an enemy, Kirby does not gain any new ability, as his trademark Copy Ability would not be part of his toolkit until the next game: Kirby's Adventure. Kirby's Dream Land also features a score, which increases by defeating enemies, or even just breaking Star Blocks. Like many other video games, the score has no direct effect on the gameplay, nor is it saved in any sort of high-score table.
- Left/Right: Move Kirby
- Down: Crouch / swallow an inhaled object
- Up: Kirby puffs up (hold to Hover)
- A - Jump
- B - Inhale then spit enemies and/or objects / let out an Air Bullet while floating
- START - pause the game
The player can reset the game by pressing A, B, START, and SELECT at the same time.
|The first location Kirby visits is Green Greens; an area brimming with temperate grasslands and woodlands and filled with flowers and butterflies. Kirby makes his way through the stage, defeating a handful of basic enemies along the way until he reaches a Warp Star which takes him to the Mid-Boss, Poppy Bros. Sr. who wants to turn Kirby into a roasted marshmallow by bombarding him with bombs. After defeating Poppy Bros. Sr., Kirby continues traveling through the stage - passing up through a hollow tree trunk in the process - to reach the Boss of Green Greens: Whispy Woods. After defeating Whispy Woods, Kirby travels to the next area.|
|Castle Lololo is the second location that Kirby visits, which features many tight corridors, mysterious and hostile creatures, and alternate ways to travel through its catacombs. Kirby ventures through the castle, going through several paths until he comes to a room that contains the Mid-Boss Lololo, who shoves boxes at Kirby. After Kirby spits these boxes back at him three times, he retreats further into the castle, allowing Kirby to continue. After another short traversal, Kirby arrives at the level's boss: the duo foes Lololo & Lalala. They will both follow the same attack pattern as Lololo did in his first battle. After defeating them, Kirby moves on to the next area.|
|The Float Islands is the third location Kirby visits, defined by its tropical seaside climate and its shallow caves. He travels through the islands, avoiding coconuts and dealing with the elusive Kabu that try to hamper his progress while squeezing through caves lined with spikes and Gordos, then walking along wooden ships and hitching a ride on a Warp Star up to the clouds to reach the boss Kaboola. After defeating Kaboola, Kirby heads to the fourth area and his penultimate challenge.|
|The Bubbly Clouds is the fourth and penultimate region that Kirby visits, being set in a lofty sky palace built into the clouds themselves. He travels through the clouds, battling all the myriad enemies that choke the airways until he reaches the mid-boss, Kracko Jr.. This diminutive cycloptic creature flies around, shooting at Kirby and dropping Waddle Doos for the entire battle. Eventually, Kirby defeats him and continues along until he reaches the boss battle. Kracko Jr.'s mature form - Kracko - serves as the boss of this stage and follows mostly the same strategy as his previous form but is a bit stronger and has the ability to shoot out energy beams and lightning. After defeating Kracko, Kirby moves on to the final area.|
|Mt. Dedede is the final location Kirby visits. To get to King Dedede's wrestling ring, Kirby must open up the path by going through four doors in the castle lobby. Each door leads to a representation of one of the previous four areas of Dream Land, where Kirby must complete a short section and defeat the boss of each area once again. When all the bosses are defeated, Kirby can jump through a portrait of Dedede and face him in a final battle. When King Dedede is defeated, Kirby returns the food to the people of Dream Land along with the Sparkling Stars.|
There are items that assist Kirby during his adventure. Some of these items enhance Kirby's attacks, allowing Kirby to destroy enemies, while others act as recovery items. In some cases, an item is required to defeat a boss or continue through a stage.
|1 Up||Gives an extra life to Kirby.|
|Bag of Magic Food||Restores all of Kirby's health.|
|Bomb||Once inhaled, Kirby can spit the bomb out to destroy multiple enemies. This same concept is used for other abilities in the series such as the Bomb and Crash abilities.|
|Candy||When touched, this item causes Kirby to become invincible for a short time. While under its effects, Kirby can destroy any enemy he runs into.|
|Microphone||When inhaled and spit out, the microphone defeats all enemies on the screen in sequence. The same concept is used for the Mike Copy Ability that appears in future games.|
|Mint Leaf||When inhaled, this item allows Kirby to stay permanently puffed up, and to shoot multiple puffs of air continually for a time. This item is mainly used when battling Kaboola.|
|Pep Brew||Recovers two bars of Kirby's health.|
|Sparkling Stars||An item that Kirby can obtain after defeating a stage boss.|
|Spicy Food||When inhaled, Kirby will spit fire from his mouth and burn anything upon contact, but this effect lasts only a short while. This same concept is used for future fire-based powers such as the Fire Copy Ability.|
|Warp Star||Appears in various levels and allows Kirby to move on to the next section of a stage.|
Different types of enemies are encountered throughout the game, all of which will harm Kirby if he touches them. Most adversaries can be defeated by spitting something at them, which adds a set amount of point to Kirby's score. Alternatively, many may also be inhaled and swallowed, or used as ammunition; however, doing so only awards Kirby half the amount of points. Most enemies respawn once their starting position is scrolled off the screen.
In the Extra Game, many opponents are replaced by faster or stronger ones. The columns "Normal Game" and "Extra Game" in the following table indicate whether or not an enemy appears in that game mode; if it is absent from a mode, its replacement is listed.
|Name||Appearance||Points||Normal Game||Extra Game||Description|
|Benny||400||Dizzy||This small creature spins while flying into one direction or in a triangular pattern.|
|Blatzy||N/A||Shotzo||An indestructible, immobile cannon that fires cannonballs at Kirby very rapidly.|
|Blipper||600||A fish with a scuba mask found in some water sections. May jump out of the water to attack.|
|Blopper||400||Cappy||A bouncing blob disguised as a cupcake. Hops around, scattering harmful frosting while wearing its disguise. Inhaling unmasks it.|
|Booler||400||Gaspar||This ghost floats in circles or jumps around.|
|Boomer||1000||Sir Kibble||Throws fast boomerangs at Kirby, always tossing two or three in quick succession.|
|Bront Burt||400||Koozer||A spherical creature with insect-like wings that flies through the air.|
|Broom Hatter||400||Wearing a pointed hat, Broom Hatter sweeps the floor with its broom, moving rather quickly and sometimes jumping. May dive to damage Kirby in the Extra Game.|
|Cappy||400||Blopper||Disguised as a mushroom, this enemy bounces around. Attempting to inhale it unmasks it.|
|Cawcun||600||Puffy||This pelican-like enemy flies through the air in a swooping motion.|
|Chuckie||600||Hurly||This strange goofy face emerges from a question mark box, bouncing around on top of it before vanishing inside again.|
|Coconut||100||Coconuts hang on palm trees and fall down when Kirby gets near, exploding on impact.|
|Coner||600||A hermit crab that slowly crawls around. Sometimes hides in its shell initially, keeping Kirby from inhaling it.|
|Dizzy||400||Benny||Tumbling through the air, this strange creature flies in a straight line or bounces in a triangular pattern between walls.|
|Flapper||400||This bat flies back and forth, flapping its wings.|
|Flotzo||400||Squishy||An octopus that walks and jumps around or flies straight into the air.|
|Gaspar||400||Booler||Like Booler, this ghost floats or jumps around.|
|Glunk||1000||Resembling an anemone, Glunk rests on ocean floors and may periodically release projectiles that travel in a straight line for a short distance.|
|Gordo||N/A||An invincible, spiked ball that travels on a set path. Deals three bars of damage in the Extra Game.|
|Grizzo||800||Large, bear-like enemies that hop around. They sometimes carry a Poppy Bros. Jr..|
|Grumples||400||Kabu||A stone head that jumps, glides or floats while spinning. When in the air, it teleports around and chases after Kirby if he gets near.|
|Hurly||600||Chuckie||A darker version of Chuckie that pops out of question mark boxes in great quantities and falls of the screen.|
|Kabu||400||Grumples||A stone head that glides, jumps or floats while spinning. The floating variety may teleport.|
|Kookler||400||Whiskers||This horned creature floats in an oval or triangular motion.|
|Koozer||400||Bront Burt||A black, spherical creature that flies in erratic patterns, often following Kirby.|
|Mr. P. Umpkin||600||Two Face||A Jack-o-lantern enemy that flies after Kirby once he wakes it up by walking past it.|
|Mumbies||1000||Skuller||Spherical, mummy-like enemies that slowly fly around and cannot be inhaled.|
|Parasol||20||Held by Waddle Dees, Waddle Doos or Shotzos to slow their fall. Can only be damaged once the enemy lets go of it. Chases Kirby in the Extra Game.|
|Peezer||1000||Wizzer||A one-eyed crab that fires beams. It protects itself with its claws when not attacking, keeping Kirby from inhaling it.|
|Poppy Bros. Jr.||400||Hopping back and forth, this small creature can harm Kirby if he bumps into it. Sometimes found balancing on an apple or riding on a Grizzo.|
|Puffy||600||Cawcun||Flies through the air in a swooping motion, harming Kirby if it collides with him.|
|Scarfy||800||Floats up and down in the air. If Kirby attempts to inhale it, it transforms and chases him until it eventually explodes.|
|Shotzo||N/A||An invincible, stationary cannon that shoots at Kirby, usually pausing after three consecutive shots.|
|Sir Kibble||1000||Boomer||This small knight tosses the blade on its helmet like a boomerang.|
|Skuller||1000||Mumbies||A skull that flies after Kirby and cannot be inhaled.|
|Squishy||400||Flotzo||A squid that walks and jumps around or flies through the air.|
|Tookey||400||Twizzy||This white rooster flies in a straight line or sits on the ground until Kirby gets near, causing it to fly in circles.|
|Twizzy||400||Tookey||A chick that flies through the air like a Bront Burt or waits for Kirby on the ground, jumping upwards when he gets near.|
|Two Face||600||Mr. P. Umpkin||This mask waits for Kirby to get near so it can show its true face and fly after him.|
|Waddle Dee||400*||This simple foe walks left and right, harming Kirby if he bumps into it. Tends to move more frantically and may jump in the Extra Game.|
|Waddle Doo||400*||A one-eyed opponent that acts similarly to a Waddle Dee, but may fire beams. Jumps in the Extra Game.|
|Whiskers||400||Kookler||An adversary resembling a cat's head that flies very swiftly in oval or triangular patterns.|
|Wizzer||1000||Peezer||This clam periodically opens up to fire beams from its eye. It can only be inhaled while attacking.|
*This enemy is worth 600 points while holding a Parasol.
In Green Greens, Castle Lololo, and Bubbly Clouds, Kirby encounters a Mid-Boss which must be defeated in order to move on. All Mid-Bosses have three points of health; their current health is displayed in place of Kirby's score during the fight. Unlike regular enemies, none of them are replaced in the Extra Game; instead, the battles with them become more difficult.
|Poppy Bros. Sr.||Green Greens||3000||This larger version of Poppy Bros. Jr. jumps around while tossing bombs at Kirby, which are worth 20 points and have to be inhaled and spat back. Sometimes, it briefly increases the distance of its jumps.
In the Extra Game, it throws bombs at a faster rate and may charge at Kirby.
|Lololo||Castle Lololo||4000||Lololo appears from one of four doors at the right side of the screen, pushing chests that are worth 400 points across platforms and kicking them at Kirby. He can be defeated by inhaling the boxes and spitting them back.
In the Extra Game, he walks faster and may bring out Gordos.
|Kracko Jr.||Bubbly Clouds||7500||An eye surrounded by four small orbs. It floats around, dropping small, black spheres and creating Waddle Doos. The latter can be inhaled for ammunition.
In the Extra Game, it moves faster and in a different pattern, as well as dropping bombs, which are worth 20 points, instead of Waddle Doos.
Bosses are strong opponents faced at the end of every stage. Like Mid-Bosses, they possess a health meter that replaces the score display during the battle and become stronger in the Extra Game. In the Mt. Dedede stage, all of the bosses previously encountered in the game must be defeated a second time to enable Kirby to fight King Dedede.
|Whispy Woods||Green Greens||10000||6||This large tree does not move, but blows puffs of air at Kirby as well as dropping apples from his leaves, which are worth 400 points and can be spat back at him. Unlike in a handful of later games featuring the boss, getting close to Whispy does not harm Kirby.
In the Extra Game, Whispy Woods drops Gordos in addition to apples, which bounce along the ground until moving off the screen.
|Lololo & Lalala||Castle Lololo||16500||3 each||Lololo & Lalala appear from one of the four doors at each side of the boss room, pushing boxes, which are worth 400 points, across one of the four ledges and disappearing into the door at the opposite side. To defeat them, Kirby must inhale their boxes and spit them back. Each of the two can be defeated separately. If one is defeated while pushing a box, the box will still move as if the boss was still there.
The duo walks faster in the Extra Game.
|Kaboola||Float Islands||20000||40 [displayed as 8 in-game]||Using the Mint Leaf, Kirby has to fight this blimp while flying through the sky. She attacks Kirby from the right side of the screen by launching cannonballs from the cannon attached to her, alternating between firing a single one, three in consecution or three at the same time, two of which fly diagonally. She may also charge forward in an attempt to ram Kirby.
She moves faster and shoots more rapidly in the Extra Game.
|Kracko||Bubbly Clouds||25000||6||An adult form of Kracko Jr., this spiky cloud floats through the room or swoops at Kirby, stopping at the sides of the area to fire beams all around itself and create Waddle Doos. The latter has to be inhaled and spat back at it to beat it.
Its attack pattern changes drastically in the Extra Game; here, it can either charge along the ground, fire beams from the center of the screen, or move along the top, dropping bombs that are worth 20 points and can be spat back.
|King Dedede||Mt. Dedede||100000||10||As the game's final boss, King Dedede possesses a wider range of attacks than the bosses fought prior to him. He may attempt to pounce on Kirby, hit him with his hammer or inhale him, spitting him out again to cause damage. He is also able to jump into the air, harming Kirby if he lands on him. Both his jumping and hammer attacks generate stars, which Kirby has to use as ammunition to defeat him. When Kirby is above him, Dedede is furthermore able to jump straight into the air and swing his hammer; this attack does not make any stars appear.
In the Extra Game, he moves faster, as well as jumping further and more often.
Kirby's Dream Land features other game modes that allow for a change in the game's difficulty.
Extra Game is a mode in which all enemies become more challenging. For example, Waddle Dees move faster, and gain the ability to jump. In addition, normal enemies usually deal double damage. Some enemies are replaced with new, more aggressive enemies. This mode can be enabled at any time by pressing Up, Select, and A while on the title screen, though the code isn't revealed until clearing the main game once.
If the player holds down the buttons B + Down + Select on the title screen, the Configuration Menu opens, where Kirby's total HP (between one and six) or amount of lives he can carry (between one and nine) can be adjusted. This allows for adjustments to the game's difficulty, making it possible, for instance, to play a game where only one hit results in a Game Over. The Sound Test is also accessible from this menu. The code is revealed after clearing the Extra Game and can be entered at any time on the title screen before or after the fact.
The following is a list of staff who have worked on Kirby's Dream Land:
|Staff of Kirby's Dream Land|
|Designer / Chief Director||Masahiro Sakurai|
|Chief Programmer||Kyouhei Miyabi|
|GDV Programmer||Mammy Preco|
|Sound Composer||Jun Ishikawa|
In addition, the credits list "sunday rain" as a programmer as well as "Bubby" and "Cipher" in "Special Thanks". It is unknown who they really are.
References to other games
- Adventures of Lolo - The bosses Lololo and Lalala are inspired by Lolo and Lala from the Adventures of Lolo series, which was also created by HAL Laboratory, Inc.
- Super Mario Bros. - In Castle Lololo, several blocks with question marks appear, though they cannot be interacted with in the same way.
References in later games
Most subsequent Kirby games utilize the music and motifs established in this title, most notably the Green Greens theme and King Dedede's Theme. The following are more specific references that have been made by later Kirby games:
Kirby's Adventure / Kirby: Nightmare in Dream Land
Stage 6 of Rainbow Resort is based on Kirby's Dream Land, complete with a grayscale environment and the original Green Greens theme. In Kirby's Adventure, enemies, items, and the heads-up display are depicted in grayscale as well.
Kirby Super Star / Kirby Super Star Ultra
- Main article: Spring Breeze
- Obtaining Copy Abilities and making helpers.
- Items that give Kirby powers are gone.
- Castle Lololo is incorporated into Float Islands.
Revenge of the King
- Main article: Revenge of the King
Exclusive to Kirby Super Star Ultra, the game mode Revenge of the King also takes cues from both Spring Breeze and Kirby's Dream Land. Specifically, it pays homage to the Extra Game in the latter by including enemies like Koozer, Flotzo, and Blatzy in place of their normal counterparts and features five stages with souped-up versions of the original Kirby's Dream Land bosses (including Kabula).
Kirby: Triple Deluxe
In addition, another tapestry can be found in the last extra stage of Kirby: Triple Deluxe - Royal Road - Stage 8 EX - which depicts Kirby and King Dedede battling in Bubbly Clouds using the same classic style.
Kirby's Blowout Blast
- Main article: Kirby's Blowout Blast
The downloadable title based on Kirby 3D Rumble is in many ways an homage to Kirby's Dream Land, featuring stage elements and Bosses from the game.
For example, the five main levels are based on the five stages of Kirby's Dream Land and use their musical themes. Bosses such as Lololo & Lalala and Kracko Jr. appear at the end of stages. The Sparkling Stars also appear at the end during the fights with King Dedede.
In addition, Kirby uses no Copy Abilities in this game, relying almost exclusively on his Inhale to dispatch enemies.
Kirby Star Allies
The last extra stage in Kirby Star Allies - Extra Planet δ - features a section at the end which is displayed in monochrome and resembles the Green Greens stage in Kirby's Dream Land, including the "IN" side area. The original Green Greens theme plays here as well.
In addition, when completing Soul Melter EX difficulty in The Ultimate Choice, a Dream Button appears on the main menu which allows the player to change Kirby's look to make him resemble his original artwork from Kirby's Dream Land.
References outside the Kirby series
- Super Mario Land 2: Six Golden Coins - The Unibō enemy from this game looks very much like the Gordo, and could possibly be based on it.
- The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening - Sea Urchins from this game bear a strong resemblance to Gordos. An enemy also appears in this game called 'Anti-Kirby' which looks very similar to the real one.
- Super Smash Bros. games - Dream Land GB is a stage that appears in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, which takes its general appearance, default music, and graphical style directly from Kirby's Dream Land, scrolling through various areas of the game as displayed by a Game Boy.
- In development, Kirby's Dream Land was originally called はるかぜポポポ (Harukaze Popopo, roughly "Popopo of the Spring Breeze"), and Kirby's original name was "Popopo". The title was later changed to ティンクル☆ポポ (Tinkuru Popo, "Twinkle☆Popo"), and finally to 星のカービィ (Hoshi no Kābyi, "Kirby of the Stars"). The change from "Popopo" to "Kirby" was made late in development, enough that advertisements and preview material with the original name were produced. The original titles have been referenced multiple times in later games:
- The original "Popopo of the Spring Breeze" title is referenced in the name of the Spring Breeze mode in Kirby Super Star, which is a truncated remake of Kirby's Dream Land.
- Kirby Mass Attack takes place upon the Popopo Islands, a reference to Kirby's original name.
- Two songs in Kirby Star Allies are named ティンクル☆スターズ (Tinkuru Sutāzu, "Twinkle☆Stars") and ティンクル☆トラベラー (Tinkuru Toraberā, "Twinkle☆Traveler"), referencing "Twinkle☆Popo". The Japanese name for the Star Allies Sparkler, ティンクルスターアライズ (Tinkuru Sutā Araizu, "Twinkle Star Allies"), also references this name.
- The international box art has a few oddities: most infamously, Kirby is colored white, despite being pink on the Japanese cover art. In addition, an unknown enemy that could be taken as Booler appears, if not for the nose, eyeballs and its worm-like appearance rather than a ghost-alike. Others include Gordo having a mouth and Bronto Burt having a nose.
- Main article: Kirby's Dream Land/gallery
Names in other languages
Hoshi no Kābyi
|Kirby of the Stars|
Xīng zhī Kǎbǐ
|Kirby of the Stars|
|Dutch||Kirby's Dream Land||-|
|French||Kirby's Dream Land||-|
|German||Kirby's Dream Land||-|
|Italian||Kirby's Dream Land||-|
|Korean||Kirby's Dream Land
|Portuguese||Kirby's Dream Land||-|
|Spanish||Kirby's Dream Land||-|
- Official website (Japanese, archived from the Wayback Machine)
- Kirby' Dream Land on nintendo.com (archive)
- Kirby' Dream Land on nintendo.co.uk
- Kirby's Dream Land on Kirby Informer
- English manual (USA print) (Australian print) (external archive)
- Japanese manual (external archive, with commentary)
- 3DS Japanese digital manual (archive)
- Iwata and Miyamoto: Business Ascetics - An Excerpt from Nintendo Magic, Gamasutra
- "企画書の表紙（右）。『ティンクル☆ポポ』以前は『はるかぜポポポ』と呼ばれていた。これが『星のカービィ』の始まり。左ものは、ポポポ（カービィ）の操作仕様が書かれている部分。(The cover of the proposal (right). Before "Twinkle☆Popo", it was called "Popopo of the Spring Breeze". This is the origin of "Kirby of the Stars". On the left, design specs for Popopo (Kirby) are written out.)" –20th Anniversary Kirby Pupupu Encyclopedia (HAL Laboratory), pg. 41
- From the Chinese version of Kirby Star Allies