|“||This naughty shadow was said to have been born from the mirror reflecting Kirby's innocently pure soul. He has all the powers of the real Kirby and uses his mirror-copying technique to thwart you!||”|
— Kirby Fighters 2, Shadow Kirby Special Page, Story Mode: The Destined Rivals Chapter 4
Shadow Kirby is a naughty dark mirror image of Kirby who first appeared in Kirby & The Amazing Mirror. Shadow Kirby is the guardian of the Mirror World, and in Kirby & The Amazing Mirror is initially taken to be an enemy. He appears in various places where he will either help or attack Kirby based on the latter's actions, and tosses the pink hero the Master sword during the final battle with Dark Mind if he does not already have it.
Shadow Kirby is also the final opponent of the Kirby: Triple Deluxe Sub-Game Kirby Fighters, where he battles Kirby using his own Copy Ability. He later appears as an unlockable playable character in Kirby Fighters Deluxe and as a boss in Kirby Fighters 2. In these games, he is voiced by Makiko Ohmoto.
Shadow Kirby appears to have all of the same attributes as Kirby, save for his skin and feet color, which is murky gray in most of his appearances. While his eyes also resembled those of Kirby's in Kirby & The Amazing Mirror and Kirby Star Allies, they were changed to featureless white in the Kirby Fighters games, along with the inside of his mouth. In the original Kirby Fighters and Kirby Fighters Deluxe, Shadow Kirby is purple rather than gray, and he is given a shimmering, nebulous appearance that carries over to Kirby Fighters 2.
The discrepancies with Shadow Kirby's appearances between Kirby & The Amazing Mirror and the Kirby Fighters games are unexplained, however, and are made more unclear by Kirby Star Allies and Kirby's Dream Buffet using the original design rather than the updated Kirby Fighters design.
While his palette is changed between Kirby Fighters and Kirby Fighters 2, his original Kirby & the Amazing Mirror design would be subtly modified between appearances. His original appearance and cameo in Kirby Star Allies are nearly identical, outside of a slight brightening to his palette in the latter. While this design is ostensibly the one used in the AEON BLACK FRIDAY KIRBY merchandise line, the artwork for this promotion uses his Kirby & the Amazing Mirror palette, but make his blushed cheeks consistently a lighter colour than his skin tone. This trait is carried over into some, but not all of the merchandise itself, which also foregoes Shadow Kirby's entirely monochrome color palette by giving him blue eye highlights and making the inside of his mouth pink. Some of the merchandise switches between his original and Kirby Star Allies palette, too.
Shadow Kirby was born by the Dimension Mirror reflecting Kirby's innocent soul, and thus appears to have all of the same powers as Kirby. However, unlike Kirby's brave and courteous nature, Shadow Kirby appears to be more cowardly and mischievous; he views his battles with Kirby as mere pranks, and instead of fighting Dark Mind directly, he just gives the Kirbys a 1-Up or the Master ability. Despite this, he is evidently just as powerful and formidable as Kirby, and makes a nuisance of himself when battling the pink puffball in the Kirby Fighters games. Even with their conflict, Shadow Kirby is considered to be generally heroic, and he guards the Mirror World just the same as Kirby protects Dream Land.
The relationship between Shadow Kirby from Kirby & The Amazing Mirror and the one from the Kirby Fighters games was unclear at first, and it appeared they were separate entities with the same name, particularly since in the original Kirby Fighters and Kirby Fighters Deluxe, Shadow Kirby was purple rather than gray. However, several hints in Kirby Fighters 2 (such as Shadow Kirby having his color changed to gray, his 45F pause screen description mentioning the Mirror World, and his Very Hard/Final Chapter battle theme being a remixed medley of Kirby & The Amazing Mirror music) suggested they were meant to be the same being. This would later be explicitly confirmed when the Kirby JP Twitter released a Dedede Directory post on Shadow Kirby which used images from both Kirby & The Amazing Mirror and the Kirby Fighters games.
|Shadow Kirby's video game appearances|
|Kirby & The Amazing Mirror||Secondary character and enemy||Shadow Kirby is not necessarily hostile.|
|Kirby: Squeak Squad||Reference||Shadow Spray Paint Kirby bears his likeness.|
|Kirby: Triple Deluxe||Final opponent and cameo||Final opponent of the Kirby Fighters Sub-Game. Cameos in Kirby Master video.|
|Kirby Fighters Deluxe||Reference||One of the color changes for Kirby bears his likeness.|
|Kirby Star Allies||Cameo||As of Version 3.0.0., a stone plate with him and Dark Meta Knight painted on it appears in the Sacred Square stage. As of Version 4.0.0., he can sometimes be seen on the world map of Fortress of Shadows - Jambastion after completing the Story Mode.|
|Super Kirby Clash||Cameo||Appears as a sticker.|
|Kirby Fighters 2||Boss||Final opponent in Single-Handed Mode and is also fought in the 4th and final chapters of Story Mode: The Destined Rivals.|
|Kirby's Dream Buffet||Reference||Kirby can take on Shadow Kirby's likeness using the color named after him.|
|Kirby's Return to Dream Land Deluxe||Reference||Appears as a Dress-Up Mask.|
Kirby & The Amazing Mirror
|“||Now, at last, peace will return to the mirror world... But they remain on guard... After all, who knows when another evil might arise? Don't worry, though... Mirror-world Kirby will be there to keep them all safe!||”|
— The narrator in Kirby & The Amazing Mirror
In Kirby & The Amazing Mirror, Shadow Kirby is first seen in the cutscene where Dark Meta Knight banishes Meta Knight through the Dimension Mirror, then shatters the pieces of the mirror, scattering them to the far winds. After Dark Meta Knight leaves the scene, Shadow Kirby appears from off-screen, then follows him through the door.
From there, Shadow Kirby can be encountered in various places throughout the world. When he appears, it is usually from behind a wall, as a sinister music cue kicks in. Shadow Kirby comes with 4 HP and can be easily defeated. In his first appearance in Rainbow Route, he is not actually hostile, and will merely walk into position, then look at Kirby. However in later ones, he will try to attack Kirby with a Copy Ability. If Kirby attacks Shadow Kirby, he will leave behind a present before being "dispatched", either an Invincible Candy, Maxim Tomato or 1-Up. However, he will not leave a present if Kirby inhales him, Cooks him, Throws him, turns him into a Cherry or 1-Up with Magic, or does nothing. It is unclear why Shadow Kirby will only leave a present after being attacked. It is also unclear how he survives being inhaled and swallowed, cooked, or transformed by Kirby.
Shadow Kirby gives a Copy Ability or none when swallowed in different areas.
- None: Rainbow Route - Warp
- Fire: Mustard Mountain - Room 12
- Cutter: Carrot Castle - Room 16, Radish Ruins - Room 22
- Ice: Peppermint Palace - Goal 1
- Bomb: Candy Constellation - Room 19
During the final fight with Dark Mind, Shadow Kirby appears to give Kirby another 1-Up (or the Master sword if Kirby doesn't already have it), this time making it clear that he is an ally. He appears again after the credits roll on a Warp Star to see the other Kirbys off back to Dream Land. Here he is referred to as "Mirror-world Kirby" instead of by name, which is clearer in the Japanese version of the text that instead calls him "Kirby of the Mirror World".
Kirby: Squeak Squad
Kirby: Triple Deluxe
Shadow Kirby is the final opponent in the single player mode of Kirby Fighters in Kirby: Triple Deluxe. He always has the same ability as Kirby, and is fought in the Another Dimension battle stage. In this appearance, he has a more purple hue, and his skin texture suggests he is made of magical energy. When he is defeated, he rises into the air and is dispersed. In a Miiverse post, Shinya Kumazaki revealed that Shadow Kirby uses the same Copy Ability as Kirby to emphasize the idea that "your worst enemy is yourself".
Kirby Fighters Deluxe
In Kirby Fighters Deluxe, Shadow Kirby can be unlocked as an alternate color choice for Kirby once the game is completed on Very Hard difficulty for the first time. Unlike in the original Kirby Fighters, Shadow Kirby is never battled as a boss.
Kirby Star Allies
Shadow Kirby makes some cameo appearances in Kirby Star Allies.
- From Version 3.0.0 onward, a stone plate of Shadow Kirby and Dark Meta Knight's official art from Kirby & The Amazing Mirror appears before the Meta Knight battle in the Sacred Square stage of Kirby Star Allies.
- From Version 4.0.0 onward, after clearing Story Mode, Shadow Kirby on a Warp Star may fly over the Fortress of Shadows Jambastion level map on occasion. In an official Twitter post covering this cameo, Zan Partizanne mistakes Shadow Kirby for a shooting star, and she wishes that Hyness could remember her name.
Additionally, according to Shinya Kumazaki, Shadow Kirby was considered as a Dream Friend for Kirby Star Allies, along with other characters such as Drawcia, Elline and Galacta Knight, but ultimately wasn't chosen due to a rule that was established soon after, which only permitted one character per main series title, and Dark Meta Knight was chosen as Kirby & The Amazing Mirror's representative instead.
Super Kirby Clash
Kirby Fighters 2
|“||Like Kirby's own shade, Shadow Kirby appears out of nowhere and vanishes again. This naughty shadow rejoins the battle after a long absence! Difficult though it may be, you must defeat this copycat!||”|
— Kirby Fighters 2, Shadow Kirby Special Page, Single-Handed Mode
In Kirby Fighters 2, Shadow Kirby is fought three times at the Decisive Battlefield in Story Mode: The Destined Rivals, and is fought in the same location for the final battle of Single-Handed Mode. Most of the time, he mimics the ability chosen by player 1, only on Floor 25 of Story Mode's final chapter will he instead mimic the ability of Kirby's buddy. In Story Mode, Shadow Kirby will never mimic any Rare Hats that Kirby or his buddy may have on hand when encountered.
Notably, due to there being additional non-Kirby characters in this game, Shadow Kirby cannot mimic them exactly. Instead, he chooses the most similar ability to the character in question, as follows:
Kirby's Dream Buffet
Like in Kirby: Squeak Squad, Shadow Kirby does not physically appear in Kirby's Dream Buffet, but Kirby can take on his likeness with one of the alternate Colors. The color scheme uses Shadow Kirby's older appearance from Kirby & The Amazing Mirror, mirroring his appearance in Kirby Star Allies.
Kirby's Return to Dream Land Deluxe
In Kirby's Return to Dream Land Deluxe, Shadow Kirby is referenced in the form of a Dress-Up Mask, based on his iteration from Kirby Fighters 2. It is rewarded via the Stamp Rally for completing card #36.
Flavor text in Kirby Fighters 2
|Flavor text for Shadow Kirby in Kirby Fighters 2|
|Story Mode - First battle||Shadow Kirby Appears |
A naughty shadow has appeared. You suspect it was born from the mirror version of Kirby's innocent soul!
|Story Mode - Second battle||Another Shadow Encounter |
Once again, you cross paths with the one who lurks in Kirby's shade! Send that naughty shadow packing!
|Story Mode - Third battle||Max Power Shadow Kirby |
A third encounter with Kirby's shadow?! Its power is off the charts, but you can still win with your buddy's help!
|Single-Handed Mode battle||Kirby's Shadow |
This naughty shadow can appear anywhere, anytime. After a long absence, it has shown up again to join the battle tournament!
|Story Mode - First battle||This naughty shadow was said to have been born from the mirror reflecting Kirby's innocently pure soul. He has all the power of the real Kirby and uses his mirror-copying technique to thwart you!|
|Story Mode - Second battle||Kirby's shadow is back for more! This stubby gray ball seems to think he's pulling a little prank, but he's way too powerful for that!|
|Story Mode - Third battle||The mightiest Shadow Kirby yet is back for another round! His devastating power suggests he is a guardian of the Mirror World, found far beyond the sky.|
|Single-Handed Mode battle||Like Kirby's own shade, Shadow Kirby appears out of nowhere and vanishes again. This naughty shadow rejoins the battle after a long absence! Difficult though it may be, you must defeat this copycat!|
|Game over tips|
|Any battle||Defeating Shadow Kirby |
Don't just use normal attacks. Throw in some Gobble/Grab moves and Dodges too!
- Shadow Kirby's official art from Kirby & The Amazing Mirror is just a monochrome, reversed image of Kirby entering a door from the manuals of Kirby: Nightmare in Dream Land and Kirby & The Amazing Mirror. Thus, Shadow Kirby's face was never depicted in official art until Kirby Fighters 2.
- For Black Friday in 2020 and 2021, Shadow Kirby was given his own line of merchandise with the Japanese fashion company AEON, titled "AEON BLACK FRIDAY KIRBY". The line includes a bag, a pouch, and a plush toy, all made out of tweed. Additionally, Shadow Kirby appears with his "twin" to form the Gemini constellation of the "Kirby Horoscope Collection" merchandise line.
- In Kirby Fighters, if there is an item (such as Food) under Shadow Kirby when he is defeated, the item will rise and explode with him.
Artwork of Shadow Kirby from Kirby & The Amazing Mirror
Shadow Kirby in Find Kirby!!
New Year's Day 2021 illustration from the Kirby JP Twitter featuring Parasol Shadow Kirby riding a Warp Star in the background
Group artwork to celebrate the 40th anniversary of HAL Laboratory
Dedede Directory post showcasing Shadow Kirby
Names in other languages
àn yǐng kǎ bǐ
|French||Kirby Ombre||Shadow Kirby|
|Italian||Kirby Ombra||Shadow Kirby|
|Portuguese||Kirby sombrio||Shadow Kirby|
|Latin American Spanish||Kirby oscuro||Dark Kirby|
|European Spanish||Shadow Kirby||-|
- Dark Meta Knight - Meta Knight's Mirror World counterpart
- Shadow Dedede - King Dedede's counterpart sealed in the Dimension Mirror
- Dark Taranza - Taranza's counterpart created from the Black Mirror
- "Mirror-world Kirby will be there to keep them all safe!" - Ending sequence of Kirby & The Amazing Mirror
- "これからはカガミのくにのカービィがへいわをまもってくれるでしょう", translation: "From now on, the Kirby of the Mirror World will keep the peace"
- Kirby JP Twitter post on Jan 25, 2019
- "There were other characters that we wanted to make special guest appearances, like Drawcia, Elline, Shadow Kirby, Galacta Knight, and so on. But we established a certain rule for our selection process. The rule was to select one character from each title in the main action games over the years, the so-called core Kirby games, the equivalent to numbered sequels." –Shinya Kumazaki (Kotaku interview)
- Kirby JP Twitter post on November 19, 2020