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Video Game / Kirby and the Rainbow Curse

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Kirby and the Rainbow Curse (Touch! Kirby Super Rainbow in Japan, and Kirby and the Rainbow Paintbrush in PAL territories) is the only Kirby game for the Wii U, and a Spiritual Successor to Kirby: Canvas Curse with similar gameplay using a claymation-esque graphical style with the addition of various transformations. It was released on January 22, 2015 in Japan, North America on February 20, 2015, Europe on May 8, 2015, and Australia on May 9, 2015. While Kirby and Bandana Waddle Dee are enjoying a beautiful day, a mysterious force suddenly invades and drains all of the color and life from Dream Land. Thankfully, a paint fairy named Elline appears and revives our heroes, and they soon set off to stop this enigmatic foe.

To navigate the levels, you must draw rainbow ropes for Kirby to ride upon; he also has a ramming attack he can use if you touch him. Hidden within the levels are plenty of stars, extra lives, and treasure chests, which allow you to collect goodies such as figurines and songs for the Sound Test. At the end of each level, you are ranked for your performance with bronze, silver, or gold medals. Along with going solo, the game features a unique co-op mode where other players can carry Kirby around and toss him to reach otherwise inaccessible places. amiibo functionality is also available; scanning in Kirby series amiibo allows you to use special costumes that enhance Kirby's abilities.


This game contains examples of:

  • 2½D: The game appears in three dimensions, with only two that can be moved in.
  • A Day in the Limelight: For Bandana Waddle Dee, who appears alongside Kirby as the secondary protagonist and a multiplayer-exclusive playable character. The game even lampshades this in his figurine description.
    "This is Kirby's faithful companion during this adventure. He likes to poke enemies with his trusty spear, and he can even pick up and throw Kirby! To be honest, he's just happy getting his fair share of the spotlight..."
  • American Kirby Is Hardcore: Just like Epic Yarn and a few older Kirby games, the game is so adorable that the trope ends up being Averted. Even the box art has a big ol' smiling Kirby!
  • Anti-Frustration Features: If you die too many times in one level, the game gives you the option of skipping ahead to the next one.
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  • Asymmetric Multiplayer: Bandana Waddle Dee, who tags along with Kirby as a multiplayer-exclusive playable character alongside two of his alternate-colored cohorts, plays almost the same as he did in Kirby's Return to Dream Land, unlike Kirby himself who, in this game, plays like a combination between his Kirby: Canvas Curse and Kirby's Epic Yarn incarnations.
  • Battleship Raid: Stages 4-3 and 6-2 involve transforming into Rocket Kirby and destroying the Bastron from the inside.
  • Beat the Curse Out of Him: What you're essentially doing to Claycia when you eventually get to battle her in her possessed state. However, you only get to find out that you're doing this after you've beaten her.
  • Be the Ball: Kirby's ball form returns, although unlike Kirby: Canvas Curse, it's completely voluntary. It is controlled using the Wii U Gamepad stylus.
  • Bubbly Clouds: Blue Sky Palace.
  • The Cameo:
    • When Elline transforms Kirby, she briefly changes him into Rick, Kine, or Coo before reshaping him into the intended form. note 
    • Clearing all of the levels with a Gold ranking will unlock a figurine of Drawcia from Canvas Curse.
  • Character Name and the Noun Phrase
  • Chrome Champion: In Whispy Woods' second appearance, he's clad in shiny silver armor that makes him immune to standard attacks, and gives him a passing resemblance to a Silver Birch tree.
  • Color-Coded Multiplayer: Bandana Waddle Dee gains yellow and green counterparts so that there can be up to four players at once.
  • Colorful Theme Naming: All of the worlds are named after the 7 colors of the rainbow, hence why this game is entitled Kirby and the Rainbow Curse.
  • Continuity Porn: Remixes of many of the songs from past Kirby games are obtainable for the sound test, including songs that had either only appeared in a few works or even only in a single work. They are each accompanied by an icon representing their work, including songs unique to this game.
  • Demoted to Extra: King Dedede and Meta Knight are just figurines here. Bandana Waddle Dee is an Ascended Extra.
  • Down in the Dumps: Stage 7-1, appropriately titled "Infiltrate the Junk Factory," is a run-down factory filled with broken television sets.
  • Dub Name Change: Hooplagoon and Claykken are known as Bound Goon and Squid Lance in the Japanese version.
  • Eternal Engine: The first two levels of Purple Fortress.
  • Everything's Better with Rainbows: Rainbows are a common motif in this game — in particular, Elline creates rainbow ropes for Kirby to follow.
  • Excuse Me While I Multitask: In the early stages of the final boss fight, Claycia reclines in the air and reads a book while her creations attack Kirby, occasionally looking back at the arena and laughing. Bonus points for literally excusing herself to do this by warping into the background.
  • Expy:
    • Elline can be seen as on to Ribbon. Both are fairy-like creatures attacked by the main villain and turn to Kirby for help, serving as his main partner in the game.
    • Dark Crafter, the true big bad of the game, is essentially an expy of Dark Matter, complete with the ability to possess others.
    • Claycia can be seen as the expy of both Drawcia and Paintra for having a similar name, an art motif (this time, clay) and for being able to create things from scratch using her means of trade. Unlike Drawcia and Paintra, however, she's actually benevolent, so she can also be seen as similar to Adeleine from Kirby 64.
    • The Dethskulks are a lot like Ornes in that they're floating skull-shaped demons that instantly kill the player when touched and are only defeated by special weapons.
  • Eyes Do Not Belong There:
    • Grab Hands have eye-shaped markings in the palms of their... well, hands.
    • Dark Crafter's eye is in his mouth. His hands are also Grab Hands.
  • Fairy Companion: Elline.
  • Foil: Elline and Claycia are this to each other, the former being an anthropomorphic paintbrush and the latter having the knack for clay-based inventions as well as resembling an actual artist when she's her true self.
  • Follow the Money: Many levels have trails of stars to follow. Collecting them all will usually earn a bonus item.
  • Foreshadowing: Elline's diary page concerning Claycia shows her looking completely different than when you encounter her in her boss fight. Elline also said Claycia used to be her best friend and that she used to paint Claycia's figurines before she became evil. Finally, when you finally battle her, you can see Elline desperately trying to plead to Claycia. All these point to the fact that Claycia is actually possessed by the true big bad of the game, Dark Crafter. After you defeat him, their friendship is restored.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: Elline is actually the one creating the rainbow ropes for Kirby, and you control her using the stylus.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: Dark Crafter is somewhat foreshadowed because it's hinted that something is controlling Claycia. However, it only appears after defeating her, upon which her sunglasses suddenly transform into a giant rainbow-colored blob with disembodied hands and an eye in its mouth. That part is not foreshadowed.
  • Glass Cannon: Meta Knight Kirby, obtained by scanning a Meta Knight amiibo. His attack is significantly stronger, destroying weaker enemies in one hit, but his health is the same as normal, meaning he can't take as much as he deals out.
  • Good All Along: Claycia turns out to be this. The only reason why she acted evil in the first place is because she was possessed by the true big bad of the game, Dark Crafter.
  • Green Hill Zone: Green Valley.
  • Hard Mode Filler: There's only five unique bosses in the game (counting the final two bosses). You battle Whispy Woods, Hooplagoon, and Claykken twice in the game, the second time being harder than the first.
  • Improbable Use of a Weapon: In the intro, Bandana Waddle Dee is using his spear as a fishing rod — he's tied a bit of string to the end.
  • Improbable Weapon User: The player takes the role of Elline the paint fairy, who can transform into a brush that stuns or even destroys enemies, along with affecting parts of the environment.
  • Know When To Fold Them: Dark Crafter is unique among Kirby villains that he knows he doesn't stand a chance against Kirby even when Kirby fights in a more unorthodox way in this game, and thus immediately flies away when he's revealed. When Kirby chases after him, all he can do is run away and throw swarms of bombs.
  • Law of 100: Collecting 100 stars will allow Kirby to use a powerful Star Dash. If you scan in a Kirby amiibo, he gains the ability to use this form whenever he likes.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Red Volcano.
  • Letting the Air Out of the Band: As Claycia is beaten and turned to normal, Kirby starts doing his usual dance as the victory theme plays... and then the theme goes into a halt and turns into a dark tone when "something" comes out of Claycia's broken glasses.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Star Dash Kirby, obtained by scanning a Kirby amiibo. Essentially the same as regular Kirby, except he can use his powerful Star Dash whenever he wants; the other forms have to collect 100 stars to do so.
  • Lost Food Grievance: The intro shows Kirby so distraught over his de-colored apple, Elline has to smack him to turn his focus over to the real problem. Once that's done, Kirby can't help but gaze longfully at his apple again, which implies one of his motivations to save Popstar is so he can eat again. Not exactly the first time Kirby put a bit too much attention towards reclaiming food.
  • The Lost Woods: Orange Woodland.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Claycia isn't the true villain of the game. Dark Crafter is. He was controlling her actions by possessing her.
  • Meaningful Name: Elline is a portmanteau of "Ellen" and "line". Her Japanese name is Elin, which is also an anagram of "line". Both of these names refer to her role of drawing lines for Kirby to roll upon.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: If you look closely, you'll notice that Claycia has two different pairs of hands, a large pair to swat at Kirby with, and a smaller pair to help her create clay objects. Her big hands are actually Dark Crafter's, as they disappear and the "arms" become the ends of her scarf when Kirby separates the two.
  • Mythology Gag: The obtainable clay figures is to the Kirby franchise as trophies are to the Super Smash Bros. (where Kirby's a playable fighter since the first game in the series). In fact, the game even describes what the figures depict in the similar manner Super Smash Bros. describes its collectable trophies. While most of them are from this game, there are at least a few figures depicting characters and elements not part of the game, like Meta Knight and King Dedede, for example.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Would you expect a creature called a Dethskulk to be nice and friendly?
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: The intro to the game reveals that Kirby's ability to roll around like a ball in spite of still having limbs was actually discovered by accident when he started tumbling down a hill while chasing a apple he was trying to eat.
  • Not Herself: The secret diaries reveal Claycia used to be Elline's best friend until she started to "scare her". This is essentially foreshadowing the fact that Claycia was possessed.
  • Not Quite Flight: You can guide Kirby through the air with your rainbow ropes, but your paint refills much faster while Kirby is on the ground, so you cannot keep him airborne indefinitely most of the time.
  • Ominous Pipe Organ: As a tribute to Drawcia, Claycia has some pipe organ segments in her battle theme, which is otherwise made up of Orchestral Bombing.
  • One-Hit Kill: Being crushed, falling into a bottomless pit, and touching a Dethskulk or magma will kill you instantly.
  • Orchestral Bombing: Claycia's battle theme involves a bombastic orchestra, with Ominous Pipe Organ to boot!
  • "Pachelbel's Canon" Progression: "Kirby Rocket's Big Blastoff" first section uses this progression.
  • Palmtree Panic: The first two levels of Indigo Ocean.
  • Play Every Day: The special amiibo costumes can only be used once each day, to prevent overuse.
  • Put on a Bus: Well Dream Land got the life sucked out of it in the story's intro, and only Kirby and Bandana Waddle Dee were around Elline to escape it. Consequently, for one of the only instances in the series, neither King Dedede nor Meta Knight so much as cameo in this game outside of their appearances as figurines and in Elline's wonky drawings of them ("They look...weird.") in the Secret Diary.
    • Kirby can imitate their abilities using their respective amiibo, though.
  • Rainbow Motif: As would be expected of the name, rainbows are a big theme in the game. The colors of the rainbow are also prominent themes, as the worlds are named after the seven colors of the rainbow.
  • Ramming Always Works: Much like in Canvas Curse, Kirby himself can be used to attack enemies or break blocks while in ball form. If you collect 100 stars, Kirby can use a powerful Star Dash that is much bigger and faster; if a Kirby amiibo is scanned, he can use the Star Dash at any time.
  • Rearrange the Song: The standard boss theme of the game gets remixed into an area-appropriate song for each of the normal bosses you face in the game.
  • Recurring Riff: Part of the title theme is arranged for the level select music, the first level's music, and part of Claycia's battle theme.
  • Rise to the Challenge: Volcanic Panic (6-3) features several segments that contain rising magma.
  • Swordfish Sabre: The Sawgills return from Epic Yarn, and their rostrums were redesigned into static chainsaws.
  • Scenery Porn: The backgrounds are amazing and look like they came out of a claymation production.
  • Shifting Sand Land: Yellow Dunes.
  • Shows Damage: As he takes damage, Dark Crafter loses his colors and turns black.
  • Shout-Out:
    • One of the themes to Yellow Dunes contains a remixed version of the Twin Nuts' (Island Sisters in the dubbed version) song from the Japanese version of Kirby: Right Back at Ya!, continuing the trend of anime series references.
    • Elline's wonky Meta Knight drawing has the top hat and mask of Tuxedo Mask.
  • Snowy Sleigh Bells: Just like the original tune, the remix of Snowball Scuffle from Kirbys Return To Dreamland, starts off with sleigh bells that reappear throughout the entire track.
  • Sound Test: A staple of the Kirby series; in this game, you can collect music in the levels and listen to it later.
  • Stone Wall: King Dedede Kirby, obtained by scanning a Dedede amiibo. He has more health than usual, allowing him to survive more pain, but he still has average attack.
  • Sugar Apocalypse: The game starts with Dream Land being drained of its color and turned into a lifeless wasteland.
  • Tank Goodness: Kirby can transform into a tank like he could in Kirby's Epic Yarn.
  • Tentacled Terror: The Claykken is a pirate-like pipe-smoking squid which attacks Kirby with its long and spiky tentacles.
  • The Goomba: Cotta, which resemble upside-down clay pots with feet and a face, fill the usual role of Waddle Dees, complete with spear-wielding variants.
  • Triumphant Reprise: The music that plays while attacked by the Bastron is quite tense. When exploring the ship as Rocket Kirby, it is remixed into an adventurous arrangement.
  • Underestimating Badassery: Claycia doesn't take Kirby seriously at all, giving him a Bring It taunt at the start of the fight and spending its first stages reading a book in the background. Even once she blows her lid after getting comboed one time too many, it seems she's more pissed off at Kirby rather than regarding him as a threat.
  • Under the Sea: Most of Indigo Ocean.
  • Underwater Boss Battle: The first battle against Claykken and the second against Hooplagoon take place underwater.
  • Victory Dance: As per tradition, Kirby, Waddle Dee and Elline perform these whenever they defeat a boss.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Kirby himself, who can transform into a ball at will. With Elline's help, he can also shapeshift into a rocket, a submarine, or a tank.
  • When Trees Attack: Whispy Woods appears once again as a boss and has once again, a harder variation of himself (albeit different from Whispy's Revenge and Whispy Woods EX in that it's his trunk that changes color note  and not his leaves.)

Alternative Title(s): Kirby And The Rainbow Paintbrush


Example of: