Kid Icarus: Uprising
Review by MordecaiRocks
"I'll gladly wait another 25 years for the next sequel if it's as good as this."
After 25 years, a third installment has finally been released in the Kid Icarus franchise. So, for fans of the series, it was quite a long wait, and most had probably given up on the series. Not to mention this installment didn't seem to have much in common with the other two. But Kid Icarus Uprising has finally been brought to the light, and it soars.
In my opinion, gameplay is the most important part of a game, and Kid Icarus: Uprising does not disappoint. At all. You take control of Pit, an angel led by Palutena, to defeat Medusa and her army of darkness. At the start of each stage, there is a ~5 minute long air battle. This part is an on-rails shooter where you have to dodge enemy attacks and fire some of your own. These sections are great fun and can be the most difficult on later difficulties. After the air battle, Pit will land and the ground battle portion will start. In these sections, you have full control over Pit as the gameplay shifts to a third person format. Oh yeah, these are fun too. But after this, you will face the level's boss. These are also in third-person and can be very challenging. And fun.
As you progress through the stages in this fashion, you will find weapons to use. There are many weapons to find and use, as there are many categories(bows,blades,arms,staves,palms,claws,etc.) but there are also many different weapons in these categories. With so many different weapons, you are sure to find one that will fit your play style. Each weapon also has different stats and attributes, so even two of the same weapon can be different. Then there is the Fiend's Cualdren, which is a difficulty selector that involves gambling. There are 99 difficulties, so you can find one that you enjoy. However, this is where the gambling comes in. To play on higher difficulties, you need to pay more hearts(this game's currency). What's the point of this? You get much better weapons by playing on higher difficulties. Therefore, you will want to play through the game with a challenge instead of breezing through it on difficulty 2.0. All in all, the gameplay is amazing.
This game also features online multiplayer, which, in short, is extremely addictive. There are two modes: Light vs. Dark and Free for All. Light vs. Dark pits two teams of three against each other. When a player dies, part of the teams light bar is depleted. When the life bar hits zero, the teams angel appears. To win, you have to kill the other teams angel. Free for all is a standard who can get the most kills in the least time. I prefer LvD, but I've spent a large amount of time on both. However, there are some AFKs, which takes away from the fun.
The graphics in KIU aren't anything extraordinary and won't blow you away. But they are still pretty and there are still some moments that just look gorgeous. The character models are good, there aren't very many jaggies, and the 3D effect is spectacular. I also haven't noticed lag in single player that I can think of, though there is some online occaisionally. Overall, I was pretty impressed with the graphics, and the game does have its moments of beauty. They may not be the best on the system( Resident Evil Revelaitons takes the cake for this, imo), but they come pretty close.
I'm not really sure I am able to describe how excellent this game's soundtrack is. There are just so many amazing songs. They fit the game very well, and I've put the game's sound test to good use because of them. I honestly wasn't expecting much front the soundtrack, but I was blown away. The standard boss theme is energetic and really gets you pumped for the boss. But there are also many other great songs in the game's surprisingly large soundtrack.
The game also features voice acting. Lots of it. The characters never seem to shut up. But it's sad when they do, because the constant chatter gives the game such a personality. It's almost always light-hearted and funny. With so many quotable lines that I'm struggling not to insert one right here. Also, the dialog pretty much destroys the fourth wall. You can't turn the dialog off until you beat the game, but even then, you won't want to.
One of the biggest complaints about this game is the touch screen controls. Many don't like them because they can become uncomfortable, even painful, during play. But I never had a problem with this, and if anything, the touch screen controls just enhance the gameplay to a point that button and analog controls couldn't. There are customizable button and analog controls if you don't like the touch screen method, but honestly I think the touch screen controls work great.
You are Pit, servant of Palutena, Goddess of Light. After 25 years, Medusa, Goddess of Darkness, has been resurrected and it is your duty to stop her and her underworld army. Your goal is to take out underworld commanders, helps towns under attack, and just kick underworld ass as you make your way to the Underworld to take on Medusa. There also may be an incredibly epic plot twist at some point. But who knows.
This game offers so much in terms of replayability that there is no way that you are expected to play the stages just once. There are so many different weapons to collect, each with their own stats. You can fuse weapons to make your own. Or you can try to take on the great challenge of completing each chapter in difficulty 9.0. You'll be far from bored once you beat the main story, believe me.
This game offers so much that the 25 year wait seems worth it. Sakurai and his team did an amazing job on this game and it's unfortunate that he said he won't be making a sequel to it. Anyways, buy this game, it's worth it. According to my activity log I've out over 80 hours into it and I still play it constantly.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 05/21/12
Game Release: Kid Icarus: Uprising (US, 03/23/12)
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