Home > Ported Reviews, Virtual Console, Wii > “Kid Icarus” Wii Virtual Console Review

“Kid Icarus” Wii Virtual Console Review

Hey, Frayed Wire readers! This is a review Josh made on his old site, but is now being moved here!

As I have said before, I only review games after I have beaten them. So since I am bringing you this review, keep in mind that I have played through the entire game and won. I’m not some angry kid stuck on the first level – no, this is a nice in-depth review of Kid Icarus.

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I was a little nervous about downloading Kid Icarus from the Wii Virtual Console because of its reputation of being an incredibly difficult game. But Pit (the main character) is in Brawl, and I’d seen enough videos of this game to decide it looked fun, so I downloaded it. I got to tell you, I didn’t think this was really that hard after all. Strange, since I thought Super Paper Mario (a game said to be easy) was kind of hard. But Super Paper Mario was the “where the heck do I go now?” kind of hard, while Kid Icarus is the “I know what I’m doing but I can’t do it” type of difficult.

Kid Icarus starts off hard, but when you take the time to get health and weapon upgrades, it quickly gets easier. It’s wierd like that – most games are easy at first then get harder towards the end. Kid Icarus however, is the complete opposite – it’s tough at first then easier once you’re farther in the game.

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In fact, Kid Icarus does a lot of things wierdly. One part of it is an upward-scrolling adventure, one part is a side-scrolling mario-style game (except you’re armed with a projectile weapon), 3 levels are fortresses that play kind of like the original Zelda game (except you see things from a side view, not overhead), and the last level plays almost like a shooter. There’s also those incredibly annoying Eggplant Wizards that reside in the fortresses. If you get hit by an eggplant they throw at you, you have to wander around the fortress as a helpless walking eggplant until you find a room with a nurse that will cure you from your vegetable state. Usually, the nurse room is at the opposite end of the fortress.

There’s a lot of things like that that seem like they were put in the game only to frustrate people. And I am completely serious with that statement. Those things don’t make the game difficult – they make it frustrating. Levels are long and without checkpoints. There are plenty of tiny platforms you must jump to, or else you’ll fall to your death (and that raises another question – why can’t Pit fly when he has wings?). To get weapon upgrades, you have to survive a cruel tile-dodging ritual (why are those old men trying to kill you like that? Don’t they want the world to be saved? Just give Pit the stupid thing!!). But the most annoying thing are these little thieves that come and snatch your weapon upgrades away from you. You can’t kill them or take your weapon back. Instead, you have to go back to the tile-flinging old men and earn another one. Grr. I just jump off a cliff and replay the level when that happens.

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I’m making Kid Icarus sound bad with all this, but it’s not a bad game at all. Actually, I rather enjoyed it. I love how you can jump and shoot things. It’s like giving Mario a gun (or in this case, a bow and arrow). You might be thinking, “Uh, Josh? Ever heard of Metroid?” Well, there’s a lot of people that think this game is a Metroid rip-off. But it’s not. Yes, in Japan Metroid came out a few months before Kid Icarus, but in North America they were released the same day. Both games use the same game engine, and they both used the state of the art (at the time) password system to save progress. There’s even a metroid enemy in Kid Icarus, although in that game, it’s called a Komayto. The booklet to the original NES version even goes as far to say that the Komayto may have come from another planet.

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A Metroid? What the heck?

Both games are considered great, but when it comes to the legacy the games have left, Metroid has overshadowed Kid Icarus by a lot, causing Kid Icarus to become little more than a cult classic. But I think that Kid Icarus has just as many lovable elements to it as the “other Nintendo classics” like Mario or Zelda. For one, the music in Kid Icarus fits perfectly with the game and it’s very catchy. There are different songs for the different worlds, the bosses, etc., and all of them are very good. In Mario or Zelda however, the background music is the same for practically the entire game (I’m talking the NES classics). Most gamers don’t appreciate game music as much as I do however, so you might not care that there’s catchy music. The gameplay is probably more important to you (well, the gameplay is more important than the music for me, too). Kid Icarus has very unique and varied gameplay, as I have mentioned before. There’s never been anything else that’s quite like it. Well, except for its Game Boy sequel – Kid Icarus: Of Monsters and Myths. But chances are, that’s not coming to the Virtual Console…

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One thing that bothers me with this Virtual Console re-release is how the entire password system was changed. Why? I have no idea. Maybe Nintendo changed it because keeping it the same as the NES version would make too much sense. I’m not going to get back to my ranting, though. Since the password system was changed, you can’t use old codes like “ICARUS FIGHTS MEDUSA ANGELS” to get farther ahead in the game. You have to beat it the hard way – the legit way. Although, Kid Icarus has been out long enough on the Virtual Console that you might be able to find some of the new passwords on the internet. I might post some of the passwords I wrote down while playing it for you guys one day.

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Kid Icarus is a great game that never got the attention it deserved. If you own the game right now and have stopped because you think it’s too hard, give it another chance. Get the health power-ups (by finishing levels with high scores), and you’ll start having fun when you fly through the rest of the game. I recommend Kid Icarus on the Virtual Console because of Pit’s presence in Brawl, but most of all because it’s fun.

Final Score: 9 out of 10

By Josh60502

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