|“||To think that you've made it this far. Aren't you a persistent little thing?||”|
— Taranza in Kirby: Triple Deluxe
Taranza is a young, clumsy wizard with arachnid-like characteristics who serves as a prominent character in many games in the Kirby series. He first appeared in Kirby: Triple Deluxe when, on orders from Queen Sectonia, he kidnapped King Dedede in order to prevent him from foiling their plans to conquer Floralia. In the end, however, he realized he had captured the wrong target, as Kirby would pursue him all the way to the queen's chambers and defeat them in combat. Taranza would later be betrayed by his queen, and eventually come to Kirby and King Dedede's aid in dispatching her after she had merged with the Dreamstalk. From then on, he would be an ally to Kirby and King Dedede.
Since Kirby: Triple Deluxe, Taranza has made various appearances in subsequent games. In Team Kirby Clash Deluxe, he serves as one of the principal villains, and is battled directly for the first time in the series (he also serves as a more minor plot element in Super Kirby Clash). This is where he gained the moniker of The Puppeteer Magician. Taranza would become playable for the first time as a Dream Friend in Kirby Star Allies, though he does not serve a specific role in the game's story. He has also made minor appearances in Dedede's Drum Dash Deluxe, Kirby: Planet Robobot, and Kirby Battle Royale.
Taranza is a floating creature who greatly resembles a spider, and bears similar anatomy to Magolor. His body is divided into a head and a torso, which simultaneously resembles a spider's cephalothorax and abdomen. He has brown skin, and on his head he has eight eyes (one pair on his face, one pair on his forehead, and two pairs on the back of his head), a mouth with two visible fangs, silver hair, and orange horns that resemble pincers. Over his torso, he wears a red scarf with a green web-patterned cape. He has three pairs of disembodied, gloved hands. At the bottom of his torso, he has a stubby "tail", which resembles a spinneret. In Team Kirby Clash Deluxe and Super Kirby Clash, Taranza dresses in a dark color scheme due to the Black Mirror which was corrupting him, and possibly Parallel Nightmare's brainwashing, respectively.
The name Taranza is partially based on the name of the large spider family known as the tarantula. This is a possible misnomer however, as tarantulas are generally more passive than other spiders, as well as much hairier.
|Taranza's video game appearances|
|Kirby: Triple Deluxe||Antagonist|
|Dedede's Drum Dash Deluxe||Cameo||Appears on the title screen, as part of trophies, and as an unlockable mask.|
|Kirby: Planet Robobot||Cameo||Two stickers of Taranza appear in this title. One of Archer's possible camouflages is a portrait of him.|
|Team Kirby Clash Deluxe||Main antagonist||Also represented by equipment for Doctor Healmore.|
|Kirby Battle Royale||Cameo||Appears as a spectator in Coin Clash.|
|Kirby Star Allies||Playable character||Appears as a Dream Friend, added in Version 4.0.0.|
|Super Kirby Clash||Boss||Also appears as a sticker and is represented by equipment for Doctor Healmore.|
|Kirby's Dream Buffet||Reference||Represented by a costume and color for Kirby. Also appears as a Character Treat.|
|Kirby's Return to Dream Land Deluxe||Reference||Appears as a golden statue in Merry Magoland as a reward for completing 70 Missions, and his likeness appears in the form of a Dress-Up Mask.|
Kirby: Triple Deluxe
In the opening scene of Kirby: Triple Deluxe's Story Mode, Taranza is seen kidnapping King Dedede, mistaking him for the "Hero of Dream Land", and flies up the Dreamstalk with him. Afterwards, Taranza is seen in every stage containing a boss battle in the first five levels, fleeing from Kirby and making bosses fight against the pink hero. Taranza's acts include:
- Using magic to grow a flower into Flowery Woods at the end of Fine Fields;
- Using magic to make Paintra come to life out of her painting at the end of Lollipop Land;
- Using magic to bring Kracko from the clouds at the end of Old Odyssey;
- Using magic to awaken Coily Rattler from its statue form at the end of Wild World;
- Deceiving Pyribbit into believing Kirby has disturbed his rest at the end of Endless Explosions.
At the end of Royal Road, Taranza appears again and uses his magic to turn King Dedede into Masked Dedede and mind controls him to fight Kirby as the "Master of Puppetry". After Kirby bests Dedede, Taranza realizes his mistake in kidnapping Dedede rather than Kirby and calls for help from Queen Sectonia, who swats him away for his failures. At this point, Taranza decides to aid Kirby and King Dedede, gaining redemption in the process by tossing Kirby a Miracle Fruit to activate his Hypernova ability at a crucial point during the final battle with Flowered Sectonia. Afterwards, in the ending cutscene, Taranza rescues Dedede from his fall, and it is revealed that Taranza was ordered by Sectonia to kidnap the hero of Dream Land in order to prevent them from stopping her, but he mistakenly kidnapped King Dedede rather than Kirby. After the credits roll, Taranza waves at the player alongside Kirby, King Dedede and the People of the Sky.
Original sprite work of Taranza also appears as a rare Keychain.
Dedede's Drum Dash Deluxe
In Dedede's Drum Dash Deluxe, Dedede can unlock the Taranza Mask after completing every secret level in the game. A hand-puppet version of Taranza also appears on title screen as part of various different interactions, and he appears in some of the trophies as well.
Kirby: Planet Robobot
Team Kirby Clash Deluxe
Taranza returns in the spinoff title Team Kirby Clash Deluxe, serving the role of the main antagonist and driving the various monsters to attack the Dream Kingdom. His ultimate triumph is in subduing and bending Landia the Guardian Angel to his will, who continues to fight even after he is defeated. It is later revealed that Taranza was being influenced by a powerful evil object known as the Black Mirror, and to return Taranza to a friendly demeanor, Team Kirby must destroy this mirror, dealing with everything it summons in the process.
Unlike in Kirby: Triple Deluxe, Taranza is fought directly as a boss in this title, serving as the fourth Ordeal boss. He floats around the battlefield, tossing magic energy at Team Kirby from the foreground and background. He is also capable of ensnaring the Kirbys in a magic net, rendering them useless for a time. His ability to float about and teleport makes him a difficult target for Team Kirby, but like other floating enemies, he is vulnerable to the Beam Mage's Time Beam spell.
Defeating Taranza unlocks the last series of encounters in all of the lands unlocked up to that point, eventually leading to the fight with Landia EX.
In this game, Taranza's model was updated from Triple Deluxe. Most notably, his mouth is now part of his model rather than a texture, meaning he can freely open and close it. His hair is similarly fully-modeled, and his scarf is longer, details which carry over to his future appearances. His color scheme is also altered to be primarily red and purple, though he returns to his original palette once he has been subdued.
The story is not over yet after Landia EX is defeated and the credits roll. Two invaders from Another Dimension strike the Dream Kingdom, namely Parallel Susie and Parallel Landia. After the two parallel invaders are defeated, the Black Mirror brings forth Taranza's evil counterpart, Dark Taranza. Team Kirby must fight Dark Taranza and his master in the true final battles.
After Team Kirby win the true final battles and eventually bring peace back to the Dream Kingdom, the friendly Taranza will stay in the town and sit on Magolor's Shoppe, looking at a flower in his hand in memory of his queen.
The following are all of Taranza's attacks in Team Kirby Clash Deluxe. Note that attack names are conjectural:
|Taranza's attacks in Team Kirby Clash Deluxe & Super Kirby Clash|
|Taranza Ball||Taranza charges and releases a series of dark energy orbs which spread out somewhat after firing.|
|Taranza Web Hold||Taranza flies into the background, then readies his aim toward a random Kirby target. He then casts a large magic net at that Kirby. If caught, the Kirby will need to mash to escape. If successful, Taranza will fall to the ground and become dazed for a moment.|
|Super Taranza Ball||Taranza flies into the background, then conjures and tosses a giant energy orb into the arena, which he does either to the left or right. The orb bounces across the stage for a while before dissipating.|
|Crystal Volley||Taranza flies into the background, then conjures and tosses a series of large purple gems into the arena.||These gems resemble the crystal platforms found in Royal Road from Kirby: Triple Deluxe.|
|Taranza Burst||Taranza charges energy, then releases a large burst around himself.|
|Super Taranza Burst||Taranza flies into the middle of the stage and charges energy, then releases a very large burst around himself.|
|Taranza Ball Ring||Taranza conjures eight orbs which surround him. He then sends them outward one-by-one.|
|Magic Field||Taranza conjures an orb of energy around himself, then flies forward.|
Kirby Battle Royale
Kirby Star Allies
Taranza borrows much of his moveset from the Spider ability--including the Friend Bounce--but his webs are distinctly pink in color. In addition, he has many unique magic moves: Some are taken from his attacks in Team Kirby Clash Deluxe (e.g. Taranza Web Hold, Taranza Burst, Taranza Ball), and he can summon the illusion of Queen Sectonia dropping lightning bolts which can imbue his allies with the Zap element. Despite being based on an arachnid, his description refers to him as an insect.
The following table lists all of Taranza's moves in Kirby Star Allies:
|Taranza's Dream Friend Moveset in Kirby Star Allies |
when facing right
|Magic String Shot||
Press and release B
|Taranza shoots a string that can turn common enemies into cocoon pods.
||16→4 (2nd hit onward)|
|Taranza Web Hold||
Press and hold B, move the analog stick
|Taranza creates a web ball that can capture common enemies.||32 (hold)|
Release B while holding an enemy in your web
|Taranza pops off the enemies captured by Taranza Web Hold.||60 (launched enemy)|
↑ + B
|Taranza summons a replica of the Dreamstalk.
↓ + B, then release
|Taranza creates a magic burst around himself.
|Super Taranza Burst||
Press and hold ↓ + B, and then release
|Taranza creates a bigger and stronger magic burst around himself.
Press ↑ + B and release midair
|Taranza tosses a magic ball than bounces off walls and platforms.
|Super Taranza Ball||
Press and hold ↑ + B midair, then release
|Taranza tosses a bigger and stronger magic ball than bounces off walls and platforms.
Dash + B
|Taranza dashes and shoots a web that can turn common enemies into cocoon pods.
18 (web)→9 (2nd hit onward)
Dash + B in midair
|Taranza shoots three small webs that can turn common enemies into cocoon pods.
18 (web)→9 (2nd hit onward)
↓, and then ↑ + B
|Taranza summons the illusion of Queen Sectonia dropping lightning bolts.
When touching pod
|Taranza kicks the cocoon pods made by his attacks.
||48 (kicked pod)|
36 (idle pod)
B when near a pod
|Taranza snatches a cocoon pod to prepare for Pod Slam or Pod Slamabam.
||16 (if the pod is touched)|
Pod Snatch + B or →
|Taranza slams the snatched pod once.
Pod Snatch + ↑, ←, or ↓
|Taranza slams the snatched pod repeatedly.
|Taranza guards with a magic shield, which releases spikes if touched by any enemy.||16 (no damage to bosses or mid-bosses)|
- One of the Stone ability transformations in the base game has the statue of Taranza and the presumable original form of Queen Sectonia.
- A Stone transformation of Taranza and the Dreamstalk was added in Version 4.0.0.
- A stone plate of Taranza and Queen Sectonia's official artwork from Kirby: Triple Deluxe was added in the Grott Moon stage in Version 4.0.0.
- Taranza appears in two Celebration Pictures: "A Miracle Sent to the Skies" and "Rockabilly and Blues".
Super Kirby Clash
Taranza returns in Super Kirby Clash, his attack style and appearance carried over from his fights in Team Kirby Clash Deluxe. He serves as the fifth Ordeal of the game, though this time, he does not have quite as large a role in the story. Team Kirby battles him in the Empyrean, confusing him for Parallel Nightmare at first. Once Taranza is beaten, he appears in the Port Village and sits atop Magolor's Shoppe. Taranza is fought two more times in Party Quest encounters. This time, Dark Taranza does not appear alongside Taranza.
Taranza also appears as one of the game's stickers, which uses his artwork from Kirby: Triple Deluxe.
Kirby's Dream Buffet
In Kirby's Dream Buffet, Kirby can take on Taranza's likeness using a costume and color which resemble him. Taranza also appears on a Character Treat, which uses his artwork from Kirby: Triple Deluxe.
Kirby's Return to Dream Land Deluxe
In Kirby's Return to Dream Land Deluxe, Taranza makes a cameo appearance in Merry Magoland as a statue upon completing 70 missions in Merry Magoland. A Dress-Up Mask featuring his likeness also appears in the game, which replaces the wearer's voice with Taranza's. It is unlocked upon completing card #09 in the Stamp Rally.
|Team Kirby Clash Deluxe||The Magician reveals himself! Break his web of spells and restore peace!|
|Kirby Star Allies||As a Dream Friend:|
This clumsy smarty-pants stumbled his way here from the heights of Kirby: Triple Deluxe. He's a lonely insect on a journey in search of a queen, and he's one of your new Dream Friends!
|Super Kirby Clash||Taranza (Tough)|
The magician reveals himself! Break his web of spells and restore peace!
Kirby: Triple Deluxe electronic manual
- "Appeared out of nowhere and kidnapped King Dedede. Very little is known about him or his motives for kidnapping the king."
- In an official Twitter post, Taranza is given the nickname インテリ坊ちゃん刈り ("Bowlcut Intellectual") by Zan Partizanne.
- Super Taranza Burst from Kirby Star Allies (96 damage) is one of the most powerful single attacks in the Kirby series, even stronger than Hammer Flip (80 in many cases, and 88 in King Dedede's case).
- Super Taranza Burst's power is three times as much as Taranza Burst.
- Sometimes if the attack button is released too early but the charge complete sound effect still plays, Taranza Burst will be used instead of Super Taranza Burst.
- This attack is only surpassed by the Hammer Flip with Friend Abilities: 100 for Hammer Kirby and Bonkers and 110 for King Dedede.
- Unused data of the Net Work and Skyward Web attacks from the Spider ability can be found in Taranza's moveset files, possibly due to straight copying.
- Taranza's voice was first heard in Dedede's Drum Dash Deluxe and was provided by the game's composer, Hirokazu Ando. According to Shinya Kumazaki on Miiverse, his voice was digitally altered and designed with "the image of an androgynous young spider".
- Main article: Taranza/gallery
Artwork of Taranza from Kirby: Triple Deluxe
Taranza keychain from Kirby: Triple Deluxe
Icon from Kirby Star Allies
In-game art from Super Kirby Clash
Magnet of Taranza made for Kirby's 30th Anniversary, from the "PITATTO" merchandise line
|Quotes from Taranza in Kirby: Triple Deluxe|
Names in other languages
|Derived from "tarantula" and possibly "-anza" (Spanish noun-forming suffix equivalent to "-ance")|
tǎ láng zhū
|From「塔」(tǎ-) and「狼蛛」(lángzhū, tarantula)|
|Brazilian Portuguese||Tarângela||Combination of "tarântula" (tarantula) and possibly the name "Ângela"|
|Spanish||Taraña||Pun on "Tarantula" and "araña" (spider)|