As a child of the 80′s I was all about anything Nintendo. I loved them all Mario, Link, Simon Belmont, Samus Aran. However I didn’t know much about Pit or as I always thought his name was Kid Icarus. Even on the show Captain N they called him Kid Icarus! I remember seeing this game plenty of times at the stores, although I believe the boxart mostly turned me off to this game. I didn’t want to be some pansy angel shooting arrows. I want to be a manly plumber who jumps on people’s heads or a manly vampire hunter fighting Dracula. Or a manly bounty hunter named Samus Aran…….oh wait. Anyway needless to say it didn’t appeal to me much, now that it’s a “classic” now I figured it at least deserves a decent play through. After finally playing it and finishing it I can safely say “Yeah I played it and finished it……yay?”
The story goes that in Angel Land you had two Goddesses one was named Palutena who ruled the light and Medusa who ruled the darkness. Palutena lived in a castle high up in the sky and loved everyone. Spreading happiness and cheer to everyone and everything. Medusa lived in the underworld and as you can guess hated everyone. Long story short Medusa wanted to take down everything good and wanted to storm the castle in the sky. So she does and in the process takes 3 sacred treasures that can stop her and puts 3 of her more powerful underlings to guard them in 3 fortresses. Medusa having drained Palutena of her power locks her away deep in the Palace of the Sky. With her last ounce of strength Palutena sends out Pit to battle Medusa and her minions to retrieve the 3 sacred treasures and defeat Medusa and bring about peace unto Angel Land once again.
The gameplay here for the time was pretty unique considering Nintendo games were still breaking ground that the Atari couldn’t do. The people behind Kid Icarus tried to make sure that the game was different. The first 3 levels are platforming, the first one is really tricky because the screen moves up as you do and if you miss a jump it’s game over. Now to me the jumps weren’t super tricky or anything. Basically you just have to pay attention to what you’re doing and you’ll do fine. I won’t even address that Pit has wings and doesn’t use them.
I just pretend that he is an angel in training and doesn’t know how to yet. This stage has 4 parts with the first 3 being the same platforming with just more difficult situations. The fourth part will be the fortress and this is where the game starts to drag some. Now you can get a map that’s all well and good. However you also have to get a pencil and a torch. This sounds all great because a map won’t do you any good if you can’t see it and you can’t mark where you’ve been. Although even when you do find a pencil and a torch the map is still pretty much little to no help. I mean yeah it’ll tell you where you are and where you’ve been, but unlike Zelda you have no idea where the boss could be hiding. Along the way you’ll find statues of centurions that you can bust open if you have a mallet.
The first level these are pretty easy to acquire with a magic harp all your enemies turn into mallets for a limited amount of time. As I went through the levels mallets became more scarce. Which means having to stop in the stops within the fortresses. Sometimes however when you go into a shop they aren’t selling any mallets so you have to leave and come back and hope they are selling that time. Now you don’t really need to get all the centurions, they do however help you fight the boss of the fortress and they come in handy. Also in the fortress you will be introduced to maybe the number one annoying enemy in all of video games…….The Eggplant Wizard. Now there is another annoying enemy in the game that will steal the power ups you earn during the game, but this guy right here will turn you into a helpless eggplant with feet. The only way to reverse the effect is if you go back through the fortress and find a hospital. In some fortresses this isn’t too bad as their could be 2 hospitals, but still without a decent map this could be an annoying chore.
Also something else that really annoyed me was the power ups I received such as having my arrows shoot farther and have fireballs didn’t seem to work in the fortresses. Needless to say fortresses were no fun also they reused alot of the same rooms, which made it even more difficult to navigate when all the rooms looked all the same. I could see what they were trying it basically it didn’t work for me. I did enjoy that after the first fortress the game went into a side scroller which wasn’t as tedious as the underworld stages. Also at the 4th and final level of the game it did make me feel like I had powered up to fight Medusa, even if the final fight was a bit of a let down. In conclusion on the gameplay as I’ve said before I saw what they were trying to do and it was a bold effort. It’s just sad it didn’t work out too well and Pit got left in the dust as Castlevania and Metroid went and evolved.
I’m going to group this into one category mainly because it’s early Nintendo. You can’t expect too much although graphic wise this was a really nice looking game. It used alot of colors and I did enjoy the look of the levels and most of the enemies. The sounds I could hear some of the same ones used from other games in there, but that’s not anything new either. None of the sounds were really awe-inspiring, but they weren’t too annoying either. Now let’s discuss the music. I love the opening theme it’s iconic and is very well done, also the level 4 music was pretty decent too. However the fortress themes are pretty repetitive and when you get lost it will start to wear on you. Finally let’s discuss one of the worst musical choices I’ve ever heard. There is a character that looks like death and if he sees you he will make a crazy face and charge after you sending little deaths after you. The music that plays here made me wish I really were dead it was horrible. I’m not sure if they meant for it to sound horrible so you would learn not to upset death, but it was just bad.
After playing this game it makes me appreciate watching Captain N again and seeing Kid Icarus. He was less annoying on that cartoon then this whole game combined. I can handle him being a little cry baby who always ends his sentences with “icus.” With boring levels and some bad game mechanics, I had some fun in small bursts. Thankfully it only took me around maybe 4-5 hours to finish so I didn’t have to suffer long. I really can’t see myself playing this game again unless it was the remake on the 3DS or something. Basically this game sucks to the maximus!