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  • Accidental Innuendo: Flamerge’s pause screen description in Guest Star mode has the line, “Ha, ha, ha! Come on Francisca. Let’s get wild!” While this phrase is most likely meant to refer to the tag team between all three Mages, it's not helped by the implied Les Yay between the two.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Do the Mage-Sisters support Hyness because they sincerely believe that his Dark Lord will be their savior, because they're brainwashed by his "intoxicating charisma", or because they knew him before he went insane and they hope to see him returned to how he once was? As of Heroes of Another Dimension, the last interpretation seems the most likely, particularly with the reveal that he saved them long ago.
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    • How much of Hyness's actions are based in actual evil and how much are caused by his insanity (and whatever inflicted that insanity) is up in the air, especially after the good ending to Heroes in Another Dimension shows him restored to a somewhat normal state through The Power of Friendship.
    • Views on who and what Morpho Knight is and what happened to Galacta Knight and the butterfly to create them depend on this due to how vague the game's details are on it.
    • Void Termina has several interpretations of who, what, and why it is. For some, it's the God of the Kirby series. For others, it's Zero. Sometimes, interpretations will even overlap. Yet still, some people think it's not as important as it seems.
  • Anti-Climax Boss: Due to how the bosses tend to die quickly in this game (usually due to either being bashed by four players at once or from their shrunken health bars when fought solo), the Bonus Boss specifically ends up turning out like this. Despite either being a more powerful form of Galacta Knight or eliminating him with a single touch, Morpho Knight suffers from the same problem of having low health like all of the other bosses and attacks very slowly even when he Turns Red, and said attacks lack the intricacy that previous Knight bosses like Galacta Knight, Dark Meta Knight, or even Meta Knight himself in this game have. It's even worse the first time the player sees him, as they likely have heightened speed and power thanks to Guest Star's gimmick, letting them breeze through Partizanne and Hyness with minimal life loss.
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  • Author's Saving Throw: The Wave 3 Update can be seen as a bit of this for some who found the original game too easy. The Heroes From Another Dimension mode is far less forgiving than the main game, having harder puzzles, fewer healing items and lives, and buffed bosses. The update also comes with an even harder difficulty of Ultimate Choice.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
  • Best Boss Ever:
    • Void Termina, the final boss of the game, is beloved for being both the most grandiose and intricate boss in the series, but is even more beloved for all the groundbreaking lore details that can by scryed from both exposition regarding it and its various phases in the fight. Plus, his "True Destroyer of Worlds" form not only throws out even more lore, but also has much harder-to-dodge attacks for those who thought Regular/Soul Melter Void Termina was easy.
    • Despite (or because of) how brutal it is, the Three Mage-Sisters pull off a fitting finale to Heroes of Another Dimension with one of the most hectic battles the series has seen.
  • Breather Boss:
    • Surprisingly, Hyness is actually rather abysmal at fighting. At least, for the first half of the fight before you knock off his cloak— then it gets much harder.
    • Flamberge, especially as she's between Francisca and Zan Partizanne. For starters, she has more weaknesses than the other three, and her secondary weapon is easier to avoid and counteract.
    • Due to Morpho Knight being an Anti-Climax Boss even on Soul Melter difficulty, he manages to be an incredibly easy fight before you have to deal with Void Soul. Not so much with Morpho Knight EX though, as he will most likely obliterate your party before you even reach the True Final Boss.
    • Parallel Dedede becomes a lot easier than the other bosses in Heroes in Another Dimension if you decide to take advantage of water's effect on his rotten fruitnote . This even works in Soul Melter EX, where Parallel Dedede is fought closer to the end than his base self and can provide a much-needed health boost.
    • Soul Melter EX difficulty in The Ultimate Choice contains the hardest variations of every boss in the game (including ones seen nowhere else) and revamps the mid-boss rounds to be tougher. It also includes Goldon and Silvox, who are already at their strongest and aren't very tough to begin with. They don't provide a great breather since they're fought early on, but they're widely considered the easiest bosses in Soul Melter EX.
  • Broken Base:
    • Is the game's low difficulty to be expected for a Kirby game, or does Star Allies take it too far compared to earlier games because of the allies and simpler level/boss design?
    • The game running at 30 FPS instead of 60 FPS. Defenders say that the lower frame rate allows for more Visual Effects of Awesome, while detractors argue that 30 FPS is less than ideal for side-scrolling and/or platform games.
  • Catharsis Factor: If you ever had trouble with or were disturbed by Marx, then being able to play as him with all of his moves from his debut is really satisfying. The fact that he is a Game-Breaker doesn't hurt the catharsis, either. And you even get a "boss fight" with him in the credits of Heroes in Another Dimension. This extends to the other Promoted to Playable boss characters like Dark Meta Knight and Magolor.
  • Contested Sequel: After Return to Dream Land, Triple Deluxe, and Planet Robobot, each considered better than the last, critics gave this game mixed reviews for not offering any significant overhauls to the core gameplay, not having the creative level design sported by the aforementioned games, and for being overwhelmingly multiplayer-oriented. Fans have been generally more receptive to the game than critics, though it is still often debated whether Star Allies stacks up to the aforementioned games.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: Hyness sucking the life out of Francisca, Flamberge, and Zan Partizanne to replenish his own? Disgustingly callous. Subsequently using their inanimate husks as makeshift clubs to clobber you with? Hilariously callous.
    • Made even worse with Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as the Mage Sisters show up as a spirit battle in the story mode, while their spirit battle focuses on them being mages, their spirit attribute instead gives them 'Battering Items +' for when they were used as clubs. Thanks HAL.
  • Difficulty Spike:
    • "Heroes in Another Dimension" completely turns around the Sequel Difficulty Drop of the main game. The stages are more dangerous and have less healing items, the puzzles are trickier, your ability and ally selections are limited, and the bosses crank up their attack density to the maximum. It's also worth knowing that Corrupt Hyness's fight comes first, followed by FIGHTING ALL THREE MAGE-SISTERS AT ONCE. If you don't have a Game-Breaker with you, you're good as dead.
    • Thought Soul Melter was a bitch? Soul Melter EX introduces not only all the bosses of "Another Dimension", but also Morpho Knight EX, then Void Termina EX, and then Void. Your reflexes, health, controller, and sanity wish you the best of luck, especially when Void Termina EX starts throwing multiple laser-spamming Master Crowns around, as well as when Void pulls even more attacks from previous final bosses.
  • Enjoy the Story, Skip the Game: In a bizarre twist for a Kirby game, the game itself (prior to updates) was considered fairly lackluster by Kirby standards; the game came hot off the heels of Planet Robobot, considered one of the best games in the entire franchise, and as a result many wound up calling Star Allies too easy by comparison, being extremely unbalanced in the player's favor, and being too simple. However, in terms of plot, Star Allies is considered a Wham Episode for the series' surprisingly dark lore and a culmination of everything the series has led up to thus far, with the last leg of the game simultaneously introducing one of the darker plots in the series and a Final Boss thought to be one of the most important characters in the entire franchise due to potentially revealing the origin of Kirby and implying a connection to Dark Matter, the villain of the Dream Land saga. The abundance of Epileptic Trees has never been higher for a single Kirby game.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Francisca got this pretty quickly for her Badass Adorable design and weapon. Same applies for the other two Jambastion Mages, Flamberge and Zan Partizanne.
    • Plugg, despite being unremembered beforehand, has been getting lots more fanart and praise ever since his comeback.
    • Gooey's surprise return was met with his own fanbase spiking due to a combination of how powerful he is and how cute and dopey he looks.
    • On a similar note to Gooey is the return of Marx, bringing with him both old fans and new fans alike. Having all his power back from when he was a boss as well as keeping his cutesy design doesn't hurt.
    • Adeleine and Ribbon's return after over 18 years of absence was much rejoiced; the two of them were already darkhorses in their own right, and fans were clamoring for their return for years. Both are well-liked for their cute designs, unusual appearances for Kirby standards, and their diverse moveset. Fittingly, their jingle on the official Star Allies OST is titled "Sorry for the Wait!"
  • Epileptic Trees:
    • The Final Boss, Void Termina, is quickly becoming famous among the Kirby fandom for opening an entire can of worms regarding the backstory of the entire Kirby series of games as we know it. Everything, between Hyness's insane ranting to its various attacks and forms, seem to link it to many, many past Kirby endeavors, and as a result, Wild Mass Guessing has started to erupt at a rapid pace.
    • One of the biggest growing questions surrounding the boss revolves around the fact that the game strongly implies that Void Termina and Kirby himself are closely linked in some way, almost to the point of literally shoving it in your face. Not only do the two share identical sound effects and voice clips, the true form of the boss even takes on an appearance identical to the latter, and the True Final Boss's theme is a Dark Reprise of Green Greens, a song which is very heavily associated with Kirby. This has caused even more speculation to rise, since the same boss is also theorized to be related to Dark Matter, which would cause a hell of a chain reaction concerning Kirby's true nature.
    • The final update has taken the above to its zenith, as the True True Final Boss of Soul Melter EX, Void, appears. Void Soul was described as being on the cusp of being reborn someday as something new, Void is on the threshold of that, and the descriptions head in a very particular direction, both enlarging and bolding that he might become an "ally of the stars", suggesting he'd dream of "gentle breezes, naptimes and tasty treats", all with the new epithet of "Astral Birth". As if all this wasn't enough atop everything until now, to top it all off, as the final blow is struck— he smiles. And it's not the warped, wide laughing of before, it's the exact same happy face that is Kirby's most commonly seen expression, as he bursts in dazzling light, colorful stars erupting off his form. Void Termina is taking a new life, and somehow, someway, it appears that form is Kirby himself.
      • It's also mentioned in the Japanese's version's description for "True" Void Termina's 2nd phase that he is the origin of "Matters of Dream, Dark, Soul, and Heart," which only creates even more possibilities regarding his true nature.
      • And then there's how Void's main palette is white with red eyes, confirming that this thing is somehow tied to none other than Zero.
    • The bonus boss, Morpho Knight, is no slouch in this department, either. Galacta Knight was already fairly enigmatic on his own, so when an encounter with an apparently-innocuous butterfly somehow creates an even more fearsome warrior in a flash of light, it's no wonder the fans have been losing their minds. Oh, and said butterfly bears a striking resemblance to the one seen in the opening cutscenes for many recent Kirby games, raising even further questions.
  • Evil Is Cool: Hyness himself is beloved due to being a brilliant balance between a remarkably goofy, crazy antagonist and a violently insane, incredibly dangerous antagonist. His boss battle is also fondly remembered, showing him sucking the energy from his Mages and tossing them around as weapons, his own variation of the Friend Circle, and its overall higher difficulty than most bosses; especially with said Friend Circle flying about in unpredictable directions.
  • Fandom-Specific Plot:
    • One that is becoming increasingly common is the idea that the reborn Void Termina is another iteration of Kirby, generally the original design from Kirby's Dream Land.
    • Despite the fact they are Token Evil Teammates in game, many fans like to go with the idea that Marx, Dark Meta Knight and Susie have all made a full Heel–Face Turn.
  • Game-Breaker:
    • Any Friend that can heal others are this (particularly in the Ultimate Choice), but especially Chef Kawasaki. Heck, the friend system in general — with friends, doubly so if they're controlled by the real ones playing with you, you can steamroll levels upon levels, solve most of the puzzle rooms quickly, shred the bosses into paper within seconds, and most of all, you'll never die, because for most of the time they'll revive you.
    • The Team Attack from Return to Dream Land returns. Now, instead of the attack being determined by the character at the bottom (i.e. Kirby, Dedede, Meta Knight, and Bandana Waddle Dee have different attacks), any combination of friends make one attack when it's triggered: a giant laser that grows larger if more of the Friends participate. This does require at least two human players, however.
    • Almost every weapon-based friend combo could qualify. Not only do they increase your attack power, but they drastically increase the practicality and range of the item.
      • While all the elemental effects have their own gimmick note , Bluster drastically increases a character's mobility, speed, and reach, while creating massive whirlwinds around more powerful attacks. It's no exaggeration to say the ability to provide Bluster singlehandedly turns Cleaning from pure nostalgia-bait into an ability you'll want around constantly, and Wing from a good solo ability to a team player (and makes Coo that much more useful). As you'll see below, Bluster takes anything good and makes it that much better.
    • The Dream Friends, in general, are Purposefully Overpowered by having more versatile movesets than the standard abilities, making it easier for them to kill bosses and provide puzzle assistance. They're always easily available in Story Mode, since you can summon them at Dream Palaces on the world maps (you have to clear a level to use a Dream Palace again, but you can unlock up to four separate ones as you progress). However, you only get to use one in Guest Star mode (outside of King Dedede, Meta Knight, and whoever you play as).
      • Meta Knight, like his previous playable appearances in the Meta Knightmare modes and Return to Dream Land, is one of the best characters in the game. He's fast on land and in the air, and he has an extensive moveset that can rack up damage very quickly. However, give him a Friend Ability and he becomes even more of a threat. His default Shuttle Loop is normally a great move for both attacking and moving horizontally, but when combined with Fire, it essentially becomes Burning + Burning from Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards; a fast, long-lasting horizontal move where Meta Knight is invincible the whole time. And unlike Burning + Burning (which had noticeable ending lag), Shuttle Loop can be aimed and used continuously. Basically, this one attack can blast through entire rooms and tear enemies to shreds.
      • Rick & Kine & Coo are a very practical Dream Friend, as they have fire, wind, water, stone, and cutting abilities. As for their attacks, Stone Rick can slowly move around, unlike regular Stone (although he also takes Scratch Damage as opposed to none at all), Parasol Coo is a reworked Tornado in practice (itself a broken ability in previous games), Cutter Coo is the broken variant from Dream Land 2, and Fish Flop can do surprisingly good damage when positioned right. Rick can also Goomba Stomp enemies and climb up walls, which helps with moving fast in Guest Star mode.
      • Gooey has throw, fire, water, and stone abilities in his arsenal, so if he's paired with the animal friends, all they need is an electric-providing ally to handle most puzzle rooms. His moveset isn't as strong or varied as the other Dream Friends, but his rapid-hitting tongue whip/Parasol spin, Burning dash, Stone slam/invincibility, and special flight form with laser attacks makes him into a great all-purpose character.
      • While Marx's puzzle skills aren't particularly impressive, his fighting skills more than make up for it. Even though he needs friend combo abilities to unlock a lot of his more powerful moves, there's a good pool of moves that he doesn't need a single friend for, one of them being his Black Holenote . Then there's his Marx Flip Ultimanote  and also his heavily damaging (albeit hard to consistently pull off) Marx Megaspin, which is able to do quick damage to foes as an invincible multi-hitting move. Speaking of how much of a powerhouse Marx becomes with Combo abilities, specifically his Ball-Spit attack, Splash Marx is able to spawn a column of thorns whenever a Spit-Drop ball hits the ground or an enemy, Blizzard Marx is able to spam the ice-mine attack from his boss fight, Sizzle Marx allows for utterly ridiculous ground DPS thanks to not only the flames covering the ground after it explodes when it hits the ground, but also through the four fireballs that shoot out of it as well, and Bluster Marx allows him to spam his wide-range cutter attack for as long as he can spam the attack. Add the fact that his Flip Ultima/Shadow uppercut combo can be BUFFED as well, and that gives you a Dream Friend who can reduce a huge portion of bosses to nothing within seconds (Kracko/Twin Kracko especially goes down pretty easily, moreso in Guest Star), and pretty much hide underground to avoid almost every attack in the game at the same time.
      • Adeleine and Ribbon may not be notably versatile, but they still have their uses. While Adeleine is slower than others when it comes to Friend Combos (having to draw a boss first), that still gives her cutting, electric, ice, and an upgraded Artist moveset, complete with Al Fresco, an upgrade of Still Life that spits out even more items. Add her to an Animal Friends and Gooey team and the only puzzles they can't solve could probably be counted on one hand. Her aerial shard gun is a potent projectile attack that can be spammed, and her Kracko mount can zap bosses while flying above harm. What's more, her Ice Dragon mount has its icy breath that can do ludicrous amounts of damage.
      • In terms of game-breaking invincible charges forward, Dark Meta Knight trades in Meta Knight's Shuttle Loop for the combo string of Dark Drill, Dark Spiral, and Meteor Edgenote . Dark Spiral in particular shreds through bosses like they're made of damp tissue, but since the moves chain into each other, you need to use Dark Drill and there's no reason not to use Meteor Edge. And don't worry about Collision Damagethe entire string has invincibility frames. Bosses can be brought past their Turns Red threshold before the game even puts their health bar on screen! For swarms of regular enemies, he still has a blazing fast sword-based moveset while summoning BFSs gives him comparatively massive reach, Blade Burst hits a huge area and the startup time is mitigated by being completely invincible, and pressing down-B for a Dark Mirror move (ground or air) is always a good panic button (as you guessed, also loaded with I-frames). As an alternative, Triple Thrust (dash, jump, and hit B again after Dark Crosscut) does great damage as well, and is useful against airborne foes. Adding Bluster, of course, makes DMK more mobile and his summoned blades go even farther.
      • Daroach joins the animal friends in sheer utility, boasting Doc's electric UFO, fire bombs, ice beams, slashing claws (his own and Spinni's), and Storo's stake-pounding bulk. note . And in battles, between Smack-in-the-Box, the fire bombs, and being able to summon the rest of the Squeak Squad, Daroach is always going to have a massive amount of damage on the screen when he needs it, while being completely free to teleport or throw his Ultra Ice Laser in for extra hurt.
      • Magolor can tear entire rooms in half. He has insane area control, with his spikes and Ultra Swords, the latter of which can pass through walls and he can't be hit while using it. His magic blasts aren't very hard to charge up will and yield both electricity and fire depending on how long they were charged for, and his invincible dash attack provides wind, making him about as versatile as Daroach or the Animal Friends based on only two moves. The Gem Apples can be charged if you leave them out for long enough and the explosions they leave can make for great traps. And to top it all of, his friend ability will summon the Lor Starcutter and the more friends that get on means the ship, which already dashes across the screen, will make the ship bigger. He even has a Black Hole attack similar to Marx's and his can be summoned almost instantly unlike Marx who has to charge his.
      • Taranza isn't as game-breaking as the other Dream Friends, but his Super Taranza Burst, however, is what makes him a monster. It's a chargable attack that can be used on the ground or in midair, and at full charge, it creates an area of devastating pain around him that can blow holes in pretty much everything. Better yet, it has no cooldown, so you can spam it as much as you want.
      • Susie has some of the best range out of all the Dream Friends. Her blaster has a long range and can be fired rapidly. Her Transporter's propellers can damage anything above her and she can shoot from it. The Transporter Burst can help defeat a large group of enemies in a row and she gets invincibility frames during the attack. But her real power comes in the form of her Business Suit. While it doesn't have much range, the sheer power that the mech can produce can tear apart a mini boss in seconds. Oh, and she can have elements applied to her, giving her even more power to mess with.
      • The Three Mage-sisters, unlocked by getting the Happy Ending in Heroes in Another Dimension, are all consolidated into one single Dream Friend, and boy do they make beating Another Dimension well worth it. Each one is able to use most of the attacks they use as bosses, trading in how long some of the attacks last for utter buttloads of I-frames and attack chaining potential, and has a pretty easy button combo to cycle between the three (Down + B), as well as their Sister Circle attack, which is their equivalent to Crash Kirby that does stupidly large damage to bosses, and clears an entire room of enemies by pressing Down + holding B. They're also able to grant Kirby/any compatible Friends/Dream Friends four of all five elemental abilities so that all you really need is a Friend that can grant Bluster to be able to access all five elemental abilities in the game. In fact, you could plow through Soul Melter EX pretty easily with them, especially if you spam their Down-Up-B moves. Naturally, bringing in two/three more sets of Mages allows for yet even more power, and can plow through Bosses even easier, and you can fight the three mages with the three mages.
    • Ever felt sorry for Beam, an Overshadowed by Awesome ability? Well, Star Allies buffs Beam up to horrifying levels, mainly Beam Blast, its Spread Shot aerial move. Originally, its air stall wasn't that great, so you could only use it three times before hitting the ground. Star Allies increases the air stall of Beam Blast to a point where you can use it up to seven times before landing, and this game follows the Planet Robobot boss mechanics where multi-hit attacks are much more effective. Additionally, Beam applies an electricity effect to bosses that stops them in place, which makes it great at stunlocking. Other Beam moves got buffed as well (all of its attacks hit more times, Cycle Beam maintains Kirby's momentum instead of stopping him, and Wave Beam charges faster), but Beam Blast really pushes it into boss-killer territory.
    • Bomb. Dear god, Bomb. On its own, it's an unremarkable ability, but when applied with two particular elements, it becomes one of the scariest boss killers. With Bluster Bomb, you can float while holding an enlarged bomb, which happens to explode when it touches the enemy. Re-stocking the bomb in midair while in contact with the enemy has given it one of the highest air DPS. Sizzle Bomb can make the floor burst into flames if it explodes on it, and the combined damage of the burning floor and the Sizzle Bomb itself gives it the highest ground DPS. Both of these properties can let you clear the Ultimate Choice in under 7 and a half minutes. And as mentioned above, two Dream Friends (Rick & Kine & Coo and Magolor) can apply both of those elements...
    • Bluster Sword. Aside from increasing the range of other sword moves, it modifies the Sword Spin move (dash jump + attack) so that the user floats up slightly when using it before slowly descending, and can be repeated as long as the user stays in the air and doesn't get hit. This basically turns Sword Kirby, Blade Knight, and especially Meta Knight into a whirlwind buzzsaw of doom with high DPS, particularly on bosses.
    • The Power-Up Hearts in Guest Star. By themselves, the concepts are simple: collecting one increases your overall health, speed, or power, and they max out at five. The thing is, the enemies' durability doesn't adjust to this mechanic, and this extends to the bosses as well. Boss fights that lasted one to two minutes in the regular story mode now last half that long if you have max power, and at max speed, everything else struggles to even catch up. It's because of this very mechanic that Morpho Knight was considered to be such a joke. Even Morpho Knight EX - only in the Three Mage Sisters' Guest Star run - goes down pretty easily with the mechanic, especially considering you're spamming boss-level attacks that have been buffed to max power, even considering that Morpho Knight can no longer be easily exploited.
  • Good Bad Bugs: There was a glitch where you could use Kirby in Guest Star. Kirby wasn't able to use Copy Pedestals (or take a floating ability hat) to gain powers, though he could still inhale and throw Friend Hearts. The Wave 2 update ended the glitch by changing how Guest Star save files work (people who try to carry over a Guest Star Kirby file to the update will find that it gets auto-deleted).
  • Growing the Beard: The general fan consensus is that Star Allies was underwhelming at launch, but gradually improved across its updates, which added new playable characters, new areas in Guest Star mode for said characters, and quality-of-life improvements such as more secret areas and some Easter Eggs. It hit its apex with the final update, which added substantial extra content via the Heroes in Another Dimension mode and overall brought in extra challenge to compensate for the low difficulty of the main game. It's still a divisive game, but it gets warmer reception in its "finished" form.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • A Kirby's Return to Dream Land mod featuring an edit of Dedede to look like his boss appearance in Star Allies has Magolor Soul reskinned to look like a bizarre pink ball with Kirby's face on it...just like Void Termina looks like in the final phase. Let that sink in for a second.
    • A minor one: Driblee is VERY aesthetically similar to Sobble.
    • There's an old Kirby fan game known as Kirby: Invaders from the Dark which draws an amusing number of parallels to this game: the Big Bad is a dark hooded figure with elemental minions, Paint and Cleaning both get full movesets, a large number of bosses (King Dedede, Meta Knight, Whispy Woods, and Kracko) are shared between them, and the final bosses are both giant pink orbs.
    • A rampant rumor from years ago was that Japanese sources stated that Drawcia got her powers as a result of a deal with Zero. Cut to this game where, in addition to the Dark Matter-related attacks, Void uses a few attacks from Drawcia Soul.
  • Ho Yay:
    • This bit of official art has Poppy Bros. Jr. looking at Kirby with hearts for eyes and rubbing up against Kirby's cheek. The tutorial for the game's Friend Heart power has Poppy Bros. Jr. as the test subject, with the same result.
    • The animated intro to the game does this to Burning Leo as well. A few other bosses upon having thrown friend hearts at them (like Pon & Con) also do this.
    • The "mouth-to-mouth" food transfer is back, and thus you'll see your (mostly male) player characters kissing each other to regain health from food stuffs.
  • It's Easy, So It Sucks!: While the series as a whole has endured this criticism for most of its run, Star Allies in particular gets flack for being incredibly easy even by the standards of the whole franchise.
    • This is a common criticism for the Ultimate Choice Soul Melter difficulty mode, the game's equivalent of the True Arena (where the true challenge shows up for the otherwise easy Kirby games). The premise is supposed to be that you get one life, a shorter health meter, and a limited number of recovery items to complete a gauntlet of all the boss fights in the game, but the addition of partners significantly tilts the balance in favor of the player. Adding another human player undermines the challenge significantly, as it removes the hard restriction on dying: if one of the other players can reach the leader within a few seconds, they can be revived with half health.
    • Soul Melter EX gives those who thought Soul Melter was easy a much bigger challenge, fixing this. Even though you get a full health bar and plenty more healing items than what you got in Soul Melter, you get to face down the much-harder bosses of Another Dimension, much harder miniboss rounds, Morpho Knight EX, and the Soul Melter EX-unique "True Destroyer of Worlds" Void Termina, and the true-true final boss, Void.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!: One of the main criticisms of the game among both critics and fans. Star Allies gets flak for largely playing the same as its predecessors, and the game's distinguishing features such as the Friend system, Ability Mixing, and Dream Friends are often dismissed as minor gimmicks that don't alleviate this problem.
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Despite many mixed opinions about the game, most will say that the Dream Friends alone make the game worth a buy, thanks to most of them being well-loved characters finally reappearing.
  • Les Yay: When Flamberge is first fought, she's angry at Kirby over the fight with Francisca. During her angry rant, she refers to her as "sweet Francisca" and says that "if you've harmed a single blue hair on her perfect head..." This seems less like a Mage-Sister concerned about her fellow Mage-Sister and more like like Flamberge is in love with Francisca.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • The buff possessed King Dedede is really making the rounds on the internet since he was shown. He has been frequently compared with JoJo's Bizarre Adventure. Because he still has the same stubby feet, jokes about him "skipping leg day" (much like the Sonic Boom version of Knuckles) have also popped up.
    • "With this I'm the most terrible, most powerful villain the world's ever seen." In the dub... 
    • Plugg, a formerly forgotten enemy, replaced Plasma Wisp somehownote ; Sparky would be lost in it due to his design. Plugg has been getting tons of memes based off him. "Don't fugg with the Plugg" "Oh fugg thank you Plugg". Including some humorous art!
    • Much of Hyness's Motor Mouth rant has been subject to this, but "HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DARK LORD! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!" is a particular fan-favorite.
      • In Japanese, Hyness likes chili shrimp.note 
      • The Japanese internet likes slapping his face onto random things.
    • The butterfly that fuses with Galacta Knight to become Morpho Knight is starting to get portrayed as a Memetic Badass, given that it apparently obliterated one of the series' strongest characters with ease. This gets amplified by the fact that Hal seemingly has been building up to this encounter for over a decade (or even longer retroactively considering the very first game opens with Kirby being attacked by butterflies in a cutscene), as fans point out that he was there all along.
      • Crossing over from The Simpsons: "Nobody suspects the butterfly!"
    • A minor meme about Spider Kirby is that people say that he can "do whatever a spider can".
    • The many faces that Void Termina's core makes throughout its fight have become memetic among the fanbase.
      • First you draw a circle, then you dot the eyes, add a great big smile, and presto! It's...note 
    • In particular, the game seems to have acknowledged the ongoing meme of calling Magolor an egg; when cooked by the Cook ability, fried eggs appear, and Zan Partizanne also refers to him as "Deceitful Egg" in associated Twitter posts.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Hyness crosses this when he throws the unconscious bodies of the Three Mage-Sisters as a sacrifice to revive Void Termina— which, in turn, would allow him to destroy all life in the universe. That said, this was him acting on the absolute insanity that he developed over time, which Kirby (possibly) cures him of in Heroes in Another Dimension, giving him a shot at redemption.
  • Narm:
    • Pon & Con (as well as Goldon and Silvox) use the now-stock Kirby monster roar. It's one thing hearing this from a giant lava frog, but when it comes from marshmallowy raccoons and foxes...
    • In addition, the Soul Melter fight against Goldon and Silvox uses a Dark Reprise of the Castle Lololo theme, previously used in more dramatic battles against giant foes like Dyna Blade, Wham Bam Rock, or Giant King Dedede in Kirby's Blowout Blast.
    • While the other descriptions for the Parallel bosses aren't bad, Parallel Kracko's describes him as "made of the fallen tears and the scattered mists of his enemies" and "reborn from pure hate." Rather than sounding threatening, it makes Parallel Kracko seem like a super-edgy, fanmade OC.
  • Nightmare Retardant: For some people Hyness' second form looks like a combination between Hypno and Squidward, colored purple.
    • Not to mention that Void Termina's initial form looks remarkably like Ro-Man.
  • Older Than They Think:
    • This game isn't the first time that some dark force possesses King Dedede and turns him into a far more buff version of himself. In Kirby: Right Back at Ya!, there was a demon frog that would turn anything it attaches to evil, and turned King Dedede very buff. From that matter, the same anime was also the first time that Cleaning and Cook Kirby were presented with an expanded moveset.
    • In addition, the very same face that Kirby had when the demonic frog possessed him is used for the Soul Melter difficulty in the Ultimate Choice.
  • Scrappy Mechanic:
    • If you're playing with AI partners, there's going to be at least one situation where they decide to not cooperate when you prompt them to use Friend Abilities.note  This problem gets worse if you're using an ability with a unique Up move like Friend Bounce, Still Life, or Chumbrella; your Friends will act accordingly to the move, but they likely won't activate their own Friend powers even if they can accomplish something with them.
    • If you throw a Friend Heart at an enemy or use a Dream Rod while you already have three allies, the game will ask you if you want to replace one or just abandon the new ally. It will not do this if an ally touches a Copy Pedestal or an ability hat from an enemy that you decide not to use, instead automatically turning into that type of ally. If the ally that got changed was integral to finding a secret hiding in that level, if it was a reformed miniboss, too bad — you're going to have to go back to get them again. Dream Friends used to be affected by this, but were made immune in the Wave 3 update... unless they're at the front of the Friend Star.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge: Playing The Ultimate Choice without friends. While boss HP scales down accordingly so that they are still reasonably easy to take out, flying solo significantly tightens the room for error due to having no backup to revive you in case you bite the dust, bringing the difficulty closer to The True Arena in previous games.
  • Sequel Difficulty Drop: Star Allies has gained a questionable reputation for being easier than its immediate predecessors. Level design is more straightforward, bosses survive for less time due to their low health pools and multiple players, Point Stars are extremely plentiful and dispense extra lives by the dozens, and the friend system more or less breaks the game due to friends being able to revive you and being able to carry around extra Abilities to fights, such as elemental Abilities to power up your weapons (which can THEN exploit any elemental weaknesses that bosses may have, either stunning them, defeating them quicker, or ''both!'') or Abilities that can spawn food items. HAL may have listened, by introducing not only the much more difficult "Heroes of Another Dimension", but also by adding a newer Soul Melter Difficulty to The Ultimate Choice.
  • Surprise Difficulty: While the game itself is considered fairly easy by Kirby standards, Heroes of Another Dimension and Soul Melter EX took it to the other extreme and are among the most difficult modes ever introduced in a Kirby game.
  • That One Attack:
    • Unhooded Hyness has a lot of annoying attacks, but his use of each Mage-Sister as a swinging weapon is especially tricky, since he gets very close to the player during it, he creates an elemental shockwave as a finisher, and said finisher leaves them stuck in the ground that acts as another obstacle. There's also his Mage-Sister-throwing attack, which is tough because his throws are typically quite accurate, and the Mage-Sisters he threw stays embedded in the ground with elemental rocks on both sides of her. This takes up a lot of precious ground space, and even though the elemental rocks are able to be nullified and destroyed, it usually doesn't happen due to their natural disappearance. After he Turns Red, he uses a Friend Circle attack, where he and the Mage-Sisters spin across the corners of the screen, going forwards and backwards randomly and even launching over to opposite corners as well; and then goes to the center and sends the Mage-Sisters launching onto the floor. This does give an opportunity to attack Hyness, however, since he is dazed afterwards.
      • Don't get us started on Corrupt Hyness. The above attacks are now faster, much more damaging and far harder to dodge.
    • Remember when Morpho Knight's BFS attack was easily exploitable? Well, tough luck because Morpho Knight EX's version of the attack charges up twice as fast and deals immense damage, in addition to creating flaming vortexes that suck characters into their path. Not much of a problem for the player, but can potentially obliterate your allies, especially the slower ones.
    • Soul Melter-difficulty Void Termina has the shockwaves it produces in its ground phase and the Master Crown lasers in its flying phase. Hope you've mastered double-jumping and spin-dodging in the Star Allies Sparkler. It's even worse in Soul Melter EX mode, as some of the shockwaves are IN THE AIR (for both the first and third phases), and Void Termina loves spamming these attacks. As for the Master Crown... Void Termina can summon multiple of them, culminating in a beam attack where you have to double-jump-dodge a stupidly large beam, and hope/pray your Sparkler can move fast enough to not get damaged by it.
    • Void Soul has a whole lot of them. It's easier to find attacks that aren't hard to deal with, such as the one where it makes mini-clones of itself.
      • Void is even worse than Void Soul. Pretty much all of its attacks qualify as this, though the standout has to be its opening attack: a Touhou-style Bullet Hell followed by three waves of Beam Spam.
    • At the start of their second phase, the three Mage-Sisters (in their triple boss fight) will use all their signature attacks one after another. For this combo attack, they're specifically not interruptible the way they normally are, so you can't cheese it out. You just have to find the tiny safe spots to stay in. Get hit by any of the attacks, and not only will you take massive damage, but you'll likely be pinballed into the next one for more damage, which, if you're in Soul Melter EX, can end many a run, or leave you with grievously low health for Morpho Knight EX. Hope you still have healing items.
  • That One Boss: The Three Mage-Sisters at the end of Heroes in Another Dimension come together for one last battle, and they are strong. Unlike the battles against each of them on their own (which were total cakewalks for experienced players), they’ll tag in and out to attack you in pairs, and while dodging their attacks separately isn’t an issue, dealing with both of them at once is a whole different story. What’s worse is that if you have multiple Dream Friends with you, finding Kirby in the midst of all that chaos is a trial in of itself, and once the Mage-Sisters use their beam attacks one after the other, it’s entirely possible for your Switch’s framerate to tank, making the battle even harder!
  • That One Level:
    • While not a particularly difficult level, Planet Towara has become pretty infamous for its moving wall sections, which will always end up crushing at least one of your allies.
    • The same applies for the final level, in which moving blocks are right there when you start the level and your allies can easily get crushed if you don't move quickly enough.
      • Basically, any level where you can be crushed counts, as your AI partners typically can't find their way around these threats and will often run into or stand near these areas without a second thought. Naturally, the Dimension levels are built around moving blocks that can crush your allies with ease.
    • The Friend Circle segment in Dimension 3 is one of the most difficult sections in the entire Kirby series. You have to roll up a series of ramps and make long jumps between all of them. The hard part is that your momentum slows down as you roll up a ramp, making the jumps incredibly difficult to pull off, especially in rapid succession.
  • That One Sidequest: Heroes in Another Dimension feature various hearts that are either very hard to get or require precise timing. Additionally, the game is rather unforgiving with these hearts. Bandana Waddle Dee's cannon area with the Waddle Dee balls, Rick/Kine/Coo's key segment, and Daroach's dynamite segment come to mind. Messing these up force you to miss out on hearts, making you either kill yourself if you want to try again, or just proceeding forward. In regards to the Waddle Dee segment, messing that up (and you will) means you have to restart the entire level again, as the cannon that leads to it ACTUALLY CLOSES OFF afterwards (thankfully this is an early segment). Just make sure you have at least 100 Hearts at the end if you want to unlock the Three Mage-Sisters.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Grand Mam's exclusion from the Ultimate Choice was disappointing to some, since she was a surprisingly fun Puzzle Boss. This may have been done to prevent the Ultimate Choice from becoming Character Select Forcing Unwinnable if the player isn't playing as Kirby or doesn't have a Helper with the Sword, Cutter, or Fire abilities.
    • Given his interesting contributions to the lore and entertaining boss fight, it's a bit disappointing that Hyness follows the same trend as Queen Sectonia and President Haltmann by not appearing until the final level of the game. It stands out more with him than with other Big Bads because he's explicitly shown in the game's intro, while Sectonia and Haltmann (moreso the former) were meant to be surprises. Heroes in Another Dimension gives his story proper closure, but he's still not seen until the end of it.
    • Many fans were a little disappointed (but not surprised) that the Sleep ability went back to being useless after finally receiving a proper moveset for the first time in Kirby Battle Royale, not even using its healing function from Kirby: Squeak Squad.
    • Some were disappointed that other Dream Friends didn't get a boss encounter like King Dedede, Meta Knight, and the Three Mage-Sisters do. It should be noted that almost all of them were fought as bosses or minibosses at one point in the past, with the exception of the Animal Friends, Gooey, and Ribbon. At least Marx gets to be fought as a boss in the Happiest Curtain Call.
    • While many people were glad to see the return of Ribbon, Kirby's Implied Love Interest, some were disappointed that she was not her own entity, but instead a part of Adeleine. This is mostly because of how many people were looking forward to her and Kirby fighting evil as a Battle Couple. In fact, Ribbon doesn't add a lot to Adeleine's playing mechanics — just her flying support, a combined spin attack, and lending her Crystal Wand to Adeleine to shoot shards. Other than that, Adeleine herself does most of the work.
  • Tier-Induced Scrappy:
    • Artist, while popular in concept, isn't a very strong ability. Its main drawback, aside from not having enough moves in comparison to other abilities (barring what Painter can summon), is that its strongest attacks have long animations before they deal damage, which is a problem when setting them up for bosses (one of those attacks, Sculpture, can also produce a useless pot instead of a real sculpture). Its only options outside of the charged moves are short-ranged brushstrokes. The only major boon it has is being able to heal with Still Life, but even then it's outclassed by most other abilities in Guest Star and Ultimate Choice. Adeleine and Ribbon are distinctly an upgraded version of Artist (Adeleine's painting attacks come out much faster and have more versatility than Artist's, and she has other moves to fall back on), so there's little reason to choose Artist over her.
    • Clean has great utility in its moveset by being able to apply both wind and water effects, but it's another fairly slow ability, without the attack strength or variety to make it stand out for bosses or enemy gauntlets. Dealing good damage with it requires a lot of Friend Super-Vac spamming.
  • Underused Game Mechanic: While Friend Abilities are always helpful in combat, it's mostly adding elements to weapons that gets used for puzzles. Other combination moves (namely, Thundersplash, Zap Splasher, Rising Sizzler, and Rock Painter) aren't needed for puzzling, so it's easy to forget that they exist. Even among elemental weapons, there aren't any puzzles that require Bomb (beyond exactly one time with Zap Bomb), which stands out as the only projectile-based one and thus could've had interesting application.
  • Unexpected Character:
    • Out of every character in the Kirby mythos, who would have predicted Pon & Con of all people to come back? They even bring their kids into the fight.
    • Even though Cook is still a simple screen-clearing ability, it's the only one with a Friend — Chef Kawasaki can use his ladle and dishes to help Kirby. Unfortunately, Kirby himself can still only use the main one-use-only move while Chef Kawasaki has a wider variety of moves and a Cooldown when he uses the screen-clear move.
    • A lot of the Copy Abilities got Helpers who either already have a connection with the ability and/or are characters people already recognize. On the other hand, Spider (a newly introduced ability) gets Como, a common enemy debuting in Kirby's Dream Land 3 who didn't have any ability associated to him prior to this game, and Plasma gets Plugg, an enemy who only appeared in one game that was released 18 years ago and didn't even have the Plasma ability in it (it has Spark instead). To really hammer how surprising Plugg's inclusion is, it wasn't even a common enemy in its home game to begin with. Its pause menu description lampshades this:
      "I'm Plugg! What? Never heard of me?"
    • The Cleaning ability was a surprise return enough, but the formerly forgotten ability brings back the Dream Land 3 exclusive animal friends: Nago, Pitch, and ChuChu! No one expected that.
    • As per usual, some of the Stone transformations in this game feature cameos from other Kirby games, and there are a couple that are interesting. For starters, there's one featuring Susie & Ribbon, both of which are one-shot characters, though they are fan-favorites, so their inclusions do make some sense. Then there's one with Meta Knight & Captain Vul, the latter of which is also a one-shot character, but he does have a connection to Meta Knight, so he's also not too out of place. The real surprise here is one that features Gryll, the main antagonist and Final Boss of Kirby's Super Star Stacker (which was unreleased outside of Japan), and BROBO, a boss character from Kirby's Block Ball who hasn't made a single appearance since.
    • A post-release update adds more playable characters, including Gooey, Rick, Coo, and Kine, but that's not nearly as unexpected as a playable Marx. Gooey, in particular, has been missing for decades (Rick, Kine, and Coo have their fair share of cameos before this game and Marx was a pinball boss in Kirby Mass Attack), and is finally back!
    • The final boss of Guest Star mode being a Bait-and-Switch Boss from the oft-occurring Galacta Knight to a scrapped knight made for the cancelled Kirby GCN game, of all things — seemingly born from the same butterfly that first appeared in Return to Dream Land...
    • Of all the Dream Friends in the world, Dark Meta Knight was the last thing people were expecting, even for those who have seen the datamine.
      • Speaking of the datamine, while it did spoil that fan-favorite Adeleine would be playable, what it didn't spoil was that Ribbon would be accompanying her, making them a 2-in-1 Dream Friend similar to Rick & Kine & Coo.
    • Some characters manage to include unexpected characters within their attacks. Adeleine's moveset allows her to summon painted versions of obscure enemies from several earlier games, including Waiu (a ninja midboss from Dream Land 2), Batamon (an odd Kirby imitator from Dream Land 3), Ghost Knight, and I3 (two enemies from Kirby 64). In the same vein, Daroach can get help from the rest of the Squeaks, including Spinni, Storo, Doc, and Squeaker minions.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: While the majority of the game has to run at 30 FPS to handle its visuals (and occasionally suffers from slowdown as a result), the end result is well worth it; Star Allies is the most visually impressive Kirby game to date, using a complex system of dynamic lighting and shadows. Special mention goes to Whispy Woods raining down hundreds of apples, and Kracko being made of metaballs, giving it an amorphous appearance similar to actual clouds!
  • Win Back the Crowd: The game's final update brought in the Heroes in Another Dimension mode and the Soul Melter EX difficulty in The Ultimate Choice, providing more challenge than the main game and recapturing the interest of players who didn't like how easy Star Allies was at launch.

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