Video Game / Kirby & the Amazing Mirror

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Kirby & The Amazing Mirror (known in Japan as Hoshi no Kirby: Kagami no Daimeikyū, or "Looking-Glass Great Maze") was the first original Kirby outing on the Game Boy Advance, released in 2004. It shifts from the standard Platform Game to a nonlinear Metroidvania with optional cooperative multiplayer.

The story begins with Meta Knight discovering that the Mirror World, which floats in the sky over Dream Land, had been invaded by a sinister presence. The mirrors of this country have the mysterious power to make any wishes reflected in them come true, so realizing that this means the mirrors could only reflect bad things, Meta Knight flew to save it. Meanwhile on the ground, Kirby was unexpectedly slashed by a shadowy-looking Meta Knight, splitting him into four different-colored Kirbys. The four Kirbys then board a Warp Star and chase their attacker into the Mirror World.

The game is essentially what you get if you throw the Metroidvania genre in a blender with The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords and the Kirby franchise. The player must traverse a maze of nine interconnected areas, finding the maps for each, pressing buttons to connect them to the Hub Level, and defeating their bosses to collect the eight Mirror Shards to restore the Amazing Mirror, the path to the Final Boss. While you're doing that, the other three Kirbys are off on the adventure too, and you can call them by cell phone at any time to help you fight enemies or solve puzzles which need an extra Kirby or two; the game also has a multiplayer mode which is pretty much the same thing except other players fill the roles of the other Kirbys.

Kirby & The Amazing Mirror is one of the ten Game Boy Advance games to be available to participants in the Nintendo 3DS Ambassador Program, released exclusively to early 3DS adopters for free on the eShop in December 2011. In April 2014, the game was brought to the Wii U Virtual Console. Like all GBA Virtual Console games, the multiplayer mode is inaccessible in these releases.

A successor for the Nintendo DS (called Kirby Squeak Squad) was released two years later (minus the Metroidvania gameplay), which uses a few of the same mechanics such as treasure chests, vitality hearts, and spray paint cans.

Kirby & the Amazing Mirror contains examples of:

  • All the Worlds Are a Stage: The Dark Mind (first form) battlefields borrow from several areas, namely Candy Constellation, Radish Ruins, Cabbage Cavern, and Peppermint Palace.
  • Alternate Universe: The Mirror World is an alternate universe where Kirby and his splitup companions must venture to defeat the Big Bad.
  • American Kirby is Hardcore: Compare the American boxart to the Japanese (see above) and European versions.
    • It is interesting to note exactly how the art changed. Closer inspection reveals that Kirby and Sword traded colors and swapped positions. Also of note is that the total Angry!Kirby to Jolly!Kirby ratio is maintained. Taking the multiplayer feature and Spray Paint item into account allows for some rather creative interpretations. All this considered, the American background is undoubtedly more menacing.
  • Artificial Stupidity: Yellow, Red, and Green Kirby. At least ONE of them is smarter than the other two!
  • Badass in Distress: Meta Knight goes off to stop the strange shadow corrupting the Mirror World, but Dark Meta Knight seals him in the Dimension Mirror and shatters the mirror from the Hub Level side.
  • Big Bad: Meta Knight appears to be one at first.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: Area 2, Moonlight Mansion.
  • Big Damn Heroes: This title turned the trope into a game mechanic - namely, the Kirbys never follow you, the only way to have them help you in both exploration and combat is to call them with your cell phone. It becomes incredibly satisfying to call them for aid against bosses, with them literally coming out of nowhere... unless their Artificial Stupidity kicks in.
  • Big Fancy Castle: Area 5, Carrot Castle (it's literally made from blocks of carrots).
  • Boring but Practical : Kirby's slide and Air Gun pellets allow you to deal lethal damage to a lot of enemies, are almost always available regardless of power and present a quick way to destroy blocks next to or under you.
  • Boss Rush: Unlockable after 100% Completion.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: You only get the Master ability right before the Final Boss, but you can use it to access areas you couldn't before.
  • Continuity Nod: The ending scene is nearly identical to the ending of Kirby's Adventure and it's GBA remake, Nightmare in Dream Land.
  • Dark Is Evil: Dark Meta Knight, who splits Kirby into four and is both an area boss and the penultimate boss right before the final battle, and Dark Mind, the real Big Bad.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Shadow Kirby. Though you can attack him for a bonus item in some stages, he is generally not a threat and even helps out at some points in the game.
  • Death Mountain: Area 4, Mustard Mountain, also contains parts of Lethal Lava Land.
  • Determinator: If you believe Kracko is the same entity in each game, then the fact that he chased Kirby into a parallel universe is what gives him this status.
  • Dual Boss: Master Hand and Crazy Hand appear in tandem as an area boss, similar to their appearance in the Super Smash Bros. series.
  • Dub Name Change: Oh boy, the most amount of any Kirby game before and (arguably) since.
    • A ton of enemy names. Some like changing Blockun to Blockin, Cookun to Cookin, Kororun to Roly-Poly, and Biruge to Snooter make sense, but not as much the others: Lip to Leap, Mirron to Mirra, Halleynote  to Haley, Dockorn to Bang-Bang, Dessy to Boxin, Annie to Cupie, Galeb to Golem, Minnie to Minny, and Gabriel to Gobbler. Mid-bosses were hit hard with a "Blind Idiot" Translation: Aerostar to Bombarnote , Bow Fighter to Box Boxernote , and Mr. Frosty to Mr. Flostynote . It's also suggested that Foley might have been a mistransliteration of Fally, as it falls down, though it is foliage.
    • Not even the new Copy Abilities were safe, as Angel became Cupid, Minimum became Mini, and Sma Bro became Smash.note 
    • This wouldn't be complete without mentioning that the mini-game Gigaton Punch became Crackity Hack, despite the obvious "Giga" sign over the audience. Speed Eaters also had its meaning Lost in Translation, as it originally referred to Samurai Kirby (which also relies on quick reflexes).
  • Duel Boss: Only the very final phase of Dark Mind, as in every other boss fight you can have the rest of the Kirbys backing you up.
    • Granted, you can call the other Kirbys just before you deal the finishing blow to him in the fireball form battle, and then as many Warp Stars appear as needed to chase down Dark Mind.
    • The fight against ? ? ? (Dark Meta Knight) in Radish Ruins somewhat qualifies, he attacks similarly to the Meta Knight boss battles in previous Kirby installments. It wasn't long before you battle against him again in the Dimension Mirror.
  • Evil Knockoff: Dark Meta Knight, a duplicate that masquerades as the true Meta Knight for most of the game.
  • Good All Along: Meta Knight, as well as Shadow Kirby (see Dark Is Not Evil).
  • Gotta Catch Them All: Collecting all of the treasures. You can tell when a room is fully completed when it glows on the map.
  • Greater Scope Villain: Dark Mind, who has seized the Mirror World for his own (presumably) dark machinations.
  • Green Hill Zone: Area 1, Rainbow Route. Also contains the Hub Level. (You also start your adventure from here to Moonlight Mansion.)
  • Heart Container: Four in the game; like level map treasure rooms and rooms that connect to the hub (distinguished from treasure rooms by marking that they go to Area 1 (which the hub level is technically part of) or another level's room connecting to the same place), their treasure rooms are larger than most rooms.
  • Hero of Another Story: If you look in the top corner of the screen, you may notice portraits of the other Kirbys, and you may notice that they sometimes gain and lose Copy Abilities. As well, if you look on the map, you'll see them located in different areas at times. This implies that while you're going through the areas and progressing the game, the other three Kirbys are having their own adventures throughout the areas. Unfortunately, they cannot unlock content for you (unless you're playing multiplayer), but you can yank them out of their adventure by summoning them to you, where they will retain whatever abilities and health they had in their prior location.
  • Infinity–1 Sword: The Smash ability; it's rare because the rare encounters with Master Hand, except for two where he's joined by Crazy Hand, or if you swallow two Noddys and let the selection stop itself are the only opportunities to obtain the ability until the Copy Ability room is unlocked (which requires all doors connecting to the hub or doors connecting to such rooms to be unlocked, thus this method is only available late in the game without Sequence Breaking) since no plain mooks grant it, but as the Super Smash Bros. moveset for Kirby it mimics has moves taken from the Stone and Hammer abilities, it's useful for both breaking silver blocks requiring certain abilities (and unlike other moves, regardless of angle needed to break the blocks) and pounding in wooden stakes, though another ability would be needed to light fuses. That, and, it's cool.
  • Infinity+1 Sword: The Master ability, which can be used if Kirby has Meta Knight's "Master" swordnote , is fittingly named because it can't typically be lost accidentally (when Kirby loses it, it doesn't disappear) and can get past any obstacle in the game, including any obstacle that requires specific abilities (silver blocks, wooden stakes, and fuses). It's also quite powerful and flexible, having far more attacks available than the plain Sword ability. However, the only time it can be used before the credits are seen at least once is during the final boss battle, so its main use is either for easy access to missed treasures or for just screwing around post-game if the file has 100% completed.
  • Interface Spoiler: ? ? ? should immediately indicate that is not Meta Knight.
  • Jack-of-All-Stats: The Smash and Master abilities are useful for getting around obstacles usually broken through with other abilities in addition to having a wide range of moves per ability. The Smash ability has the limitation that it can't light fuses, though the Master ability can.
  • King Mook: King Golem, a Whispy Woods-esque fellow.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: Subverted with Dark Meta Knight. The first time you fight him, he's masquerading as Meta Knight, and the fact that he doesn't throw you a sword is your first hint at his true identity.
  • Master of All: Master has considerably more range than Sword, has more than enough power to make it useful, and averts One-Hit-Point Wonder.
  • Metroidvania: A relative first for the Kirby series ("The Great Cave Offensive" aside). Most Kirby levels are fairly linear, but this game has many branching pathways, rewards exploration with secret treasures, and often finds the player backtracking to open up new areas.
  • Minigame Credits: The final shootdown against Dark Mind's eye form continues as the credits roll by, and a counter appears at the bottom of the screen to show you how many hits you've landed on him.
  • Mirror Universe: The Mirror World, of course, or so it appears at first.
  • Oddball in the Series: This is the only Kirby game to be a full Metroidvania instead of a straightforward Platform Game the series' main games are known for (it's somewhat of a Spiritual Successor to The Great Cave Offensive from Kirby Super Star in that regard). It's also the only game in the entire series where King Dedede does not make an appearance.
  • Opening the Sandbox: Hitting the large switch on the way to King Golem unlocks a mirror linking the central hub to a location in Rainbow Route from where you can start freely exploring the rest of Mirror World. Before then, the game railroaded you through a small linear section of Rainbow Route and then through Moonlight Mansion before hitting said switch, although deviating is possible to a smaller degree if the player obtains and keeps a hold onto the Burning ability, such as being able to access Candy Constellation early from Moonlight Mansion.
  • Palette Swap: The three other Kirbys, as well as Dark Meta Knight and Shadow Kirby. (Just because the latter has a dark gray skin color doesn't mean he's actually evil, see Dark Is Not Evil above.)
    • Also, you can collect spray paint cans in treasure chests, which can be used on the main menu to change your Kirby's color, including a black-and-white one that looks somewhat like a higher-resolution version of how Kirby looked in the first game.
  • Ruins for Ruins' Sake: Area 8, Radish Ruins. See also Temple of Doom below.
  • Sequel Difficulty Spike: One of the more difficult Kirby games for several reasons:
    • You start with very low health (six bars, thankfully one can find up to four health extensions by exploring and finding secrets).
    • Enemy density is much higher than usual, and they are often placed in inconvenient spots, with a few ambushes thrown in. Many of them even attack much faster and more effectively than they do in previous installments.
    • Many tight flying sections, with spikes or airborne enemies all around.
    • You lose your ability after one hit from any attack.
  • Sequence Breaking: It is possible to access the ability room, giving free access to almost every Copy Ability, before beating the first boss: after pressing the first large switch, Warp Star back to the hub and go hunting for the rest of them.
  • Sequential Boss: Dark Mind has quite a few short phases in his first Nightmare-ish form, broken up by small levels; then a second form that's very similar to Dark Matter and Zero; then an Unexpected SHMUP Level where you chase him to finish him off; then when you finally kill him you're allowed to keep pummeling him during the credits.
  • Scenery Porn: And how!
    • In addition, all areas have several colourful pixelart landscape backgrounds. Minus the Dimension Mirror.
  • Shout-Out: Master Hand appears as a miniboss in several places, and in combination with Crazy Hand is the boss of Candy Constellation. Additionally, one of Kirby's abilities in this game is the Smash ability, which gives Kirby his Super Smash Bros. moveset (except for the standard special, which mimics his neutral-A), and is acquired by eating Master Hand.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Area 7, Peppermint Palace.
  • Space Zone: Area 9, Candy Constellation.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: This is one of the few games where Whispy Woods doesn't show up in, but King Golem fights almost identically.
    • Wiz is one for Paint Roller and Dark Mind is one for both Nightmare and Zero. The only boss from a previous game to appear, besides Meta Knight (in a sense), is Kracko.
  • Technology Marches On: In-universe example: according to the history booklet in Kirby's Dream Collection, the inclusion of the cell phone mechanics were added because cell phones were new at the time.
  • Temple of Doom: Radish Ruins appear to take place inside a temple, as seen in the world map.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Not directly, in this case—Meta Knight tosses his sword into the Dimension Mirror for Kirby to use against the final boss.
  • Too Spicy for Yog Sothoth: The result of a Droppy stealing an ability that is exclusive to bosses, such as Hammer or Smash.
  • Underground Level: Area 3, Cabbage Cavern.
  • Under the Sea: Area 6, Olive Ocean.
  • Unexpected SHMUP Level: Dark Mind's final phase.
  • The Very Definitely Final Dungeon: The Dimension Mirror, which is only accessable if you collect all eight mirror shards. It consists of a rematch against Dark Meta Knight and the true mastermind behind the corruption of the Mirror World...Dark Mind.
  • Warmup Boss: King Golem fills this role as an Expy of Whispy Woods.
    • King Golem is actually weaker than Whispy Woods, since this was the first game since Kirby Super Star to use a draining meter instead of blips, he has roughly 25% health than Whispy usually does.
  • With Friends Like These...: Sometimes, summoning your Kirby friends can be more of a hindrance than a help, as they can push you around or get in the way of your path, as well as potentially attacking or provoking enemies that you didn't want to bother yet.

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