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Video Game / Kirby's Dream Course

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Kirby's Dream Course is a golf spinoff of the Kirby series developed by HAL Laboratory and released on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System in 1994.

The game is a miniature golf game set in an Isometric Perspective featuring both single-player and two-player modes. The single player mode takes Kirby through a series of worlds where the player must navigate Kirby through 8 holes by setting the angle, power, and speed of their shots. Each hole has several enemies standing around, and the objective is to hit them all with Kirby to defeat them. Once only one enemy remains, that last enemy will transform into the cup, and once the player sinks Kirby into it, the hole ends, and the game moves on to the next one. The goal in each world is to complete all eight holes with the lowest number of strokes possible.

The two-player game features many of the same rules, with a second player taking control of a yellow Kirby and alternating with player one, taking shots to navigate the hole. The main difference is that the stars left behind by defeated enemies will match the color of the Kirby that hit them, with players receiving one point for every star they earn. Once one player manages to sink their Kirby into the cup, the hole ends, and that player will get to go first on the following hole. The player that collects more stars than their opponent at the end of eight holes is the winner.

Across both modes, Kirby can gain Copy Abilities by after defeating certain enemies. These Copy Abilities can be activated with the push of a button while Kirby is rolling around, and help him navigate the courses in different ways.

Tropes found in the game:

  • 1-Up: Scoring a Hole-In-One in single-player mode will always give the player one extra life.
  • Advancing Boss of Doom: Robo-Dedede slowly approaches Kirby's start space, and if he reaches it, it's game over. Thankfully, attacking him pushes him back, buying Kirby extra time.
  • All There in the Manual: All versions of the game barring the Japanese version feature no intro cutscene, so reading the manual is the only way to learn about the story.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Attack of the King DeDeDe Bot at the very end of the game.
  • Be the Ball: Kirby takes the role of a golf ball. Players aim the direction they want him to go, set levels of power and spin to their stroke, and then Kirby will roll around the hole and attack enemies he comes into contact with.
  • Big Bad: King Dedede has stolen all the stars in the sky, and it's up to Kirby to free them.
  • Blow You Away: The Tornado Copy Ability can be used to send the opposing player flying away in a random direction if a player makes contact with them while in the tornado form.
  • Bouncing Battler: Kirby can defeat enemies while flying into them while curled into a ball.
  • Cast from Hit Points: Every stroke costs one of Kirby's hit points, and if the player doesn't keep collecting tomatoes to restore them, they will eventually run out and be unable to continue.
  • Color-Coded Multiplayer: In two-player mode, player 1 is pink, while player 2 is yellow.
  • Difficult, but Awesome: Tornado is incredibly hard to control, and if you aren’t careful, will take you off course; master it, though, and it is extremely useful for getting a bunch of enemies with one stroke.
  • Excuse Plot: King Dedede has stolen all the stars in the sky. Kirby must set out to stop him by reclaiming all the stars.
  • Extra Turn: In two-player mode, if one player runs out of hit points, their Kirby will fall asleep, costing them a turn to their opponent.
  • Flying Saucer: The rare UFO enemy resembles a stereotypical alien spaceship. If Kirby hits it, he gains the UFO ability, allowing him to turn into one and fly around the stage and make 90-degree turns for a few seconds, and come to a stop with the press of a button.
  • Gameplay Grading: Upon completing a course in single-player mode, the player can receive a bronze, silver, or gold medal for that course if they achieve a low enough score.
  • Human Popsicle: In two-player mode, if one player comes into contact with their opponent while using the Freeze ability, the opponent will be frozen in a block of ice, which will cause them to lose their next turn.
  • Hyperactive Metabolism: Kirby receives one tomato for every enemy he defeats, which restores one of his hit points.
  • In a Single Bound: The Hi-Jump copy ability launches Kirby high up into the air when the button is pressed. It's useful for crossing large gaps or ascending high slopes, but can very easily send Kirby OB if activated at the wrong time.
  • Invincible Minor Minion: Gordos cannot be destroyed at all, not even with any of the Copy Abilities, and should be avoided at all costs.
  • Isometric Projection: The game is viewed and played from an isometric view.
  • Mutually Exclusive Power Ups: Kirby can only have one Copy Ability at a time, and hitting any enemy that grants him a Copy Ability will cause whichever one he has to be replaced.
  • Nintendo Hard: Forget any traditional golfing rules if you want to reach the end of this game. Bouncing off of barriers, using Copy Abilities to maneuver and optimize, and controlling yourself in the air are just several tricks you'll need to master if you want to make it through with a half-decent score. With the ability to take damage if you hit the wrong obstacles or lose a life outright by flying off the course, the game seems easy at first but really starts throwing some complex course design your way, especially in the Extra Courses.
  • Palette Swap: Keeby is a yellow version of Kirby, and is controlled by the second player in two-player mode.
  • Parasol Parachute: When used in the air, the Parasol ability allows Kirby to gently float downward through the air. The player can use the left and right buttons to steer him during his descent. On the ground, Parasol can be used to quickly come to a stop.
  • Playing with Fire: The Burning Copy Ability turns Kirby into a fireball that sends him flying at high speed in the direction he is currently moving.
  • Power Parasite: In two-player mode, any time the two players collide with each other, they will swap their current Copy Abilities. If only one player has a Copy ability, the other player will steal it, leaving their opponent with nothing.
  • Ring Out: Every course takes place on floating platforms that Kirby can fall off of if not aimed properly. Falling OB will cause Kirby to lose a life in one-player mode, or two hit points in two-player. In two-player, the players can use this to their advantage by attacking their rival to send them flying off-stage.
  • Shock and Awe: When using the Spark ability, Kirby releases an electric shock as he rolls around. This form is the only way to defeat certain obstacles, such as the Whispy Woods and Krackos.
  • Shows Damage: Robo-Dedede gradually turns more red as Kirby deals damage to him.
  • Taken for Granite: The Stone copy ability turns Kirby into a heavy rock when activated. In the air, Kirby will instantly drop straight down to the ground, while on the ground, he will immediately come to a total stop. In two-player mode, Kirby will remain in his Stone form for the duration of his opponent's turn, and will be impossible to move or damage.
  • Timed Power-Up: Some of Kirby's special abilities run out after a few seconds, represented by a timer on the screen. Even ones that don't can only be used once per stroke.
  • Unending End Card: The game stops after Kirby makes "THE END" out of constellations of stars and flies off, leaving a fancy star cluster and a rolling background of outer space in his wake.