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Kirby and the Forgotten Land was a “Breath of the Wild moment” for the series, says developer

It was a pivotal moment for the Kirby franchise, but that doesn't mean the future of Kirby is solely 3D.

Kirby and the Forgotten Land appears to have been much more than a success for the beloved, pink mascot.

In an interview between IGN and general director of the Kirby franchise, Shinya Kumazaki, as well as HAL Laboratory expert director, Tatsuya Kamiyama, the pair explain their thoughts and feelings surrounding Kirby’s latest big adventure.

Catch the trailer for Kirby's Return to Dream Land Deluxe here.

The term “Breath of the Wild moment” comes from the shift in direction that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild took back in 2017. What was arguably a big risk for the series paid off, and shaped up to be a beloved title that most fans can’t wait for more of with the upcoming Tears of the Kingdom.

At the Game Developer Conference 2023, Rebekah Valentine of IGN asked Kumazaki and Kamiyama if they felt that Kirby and the Forgotten Land was the franchises “Breath of the Wild moment,” as Kirby’s first endeavour in full 3D. “If we’re talking about what Breath of the Wild perhaps did for the Zelda series in that it was a revolution, it revolutionised the series, I think Kirby and the Forgotten Land was kind of at a turning point,” says Kumazaki.

“I think you can consider it as a first step in our kind of going moving forward challenge of now also creating 3D Kirby games,” he continued.

Kumazaki also clarifies that, “it’s about the kind of gameplay experience that we can provide to the players, and how best to optimally bring that gameplay experience that really dictates how we kind of express that in game. It’s just that now we have this new genre of 3D as another method, another way, another form of providing that optimal gameplay experience through an optimal Kirby gameplay experience.”

Simply put, just because Kirby and the Forgotten Land was a massive success, does not mean that every single Kirby title going forward will be in 3D. It’s been a long, complicated road to Kirby’s first full 3D game, with Kumazaki sharing that, “we understood the herbal for creating a 3D Kirby game was going to be a high.”

Furthermore, and perhaps rather excitingly for long-time Kirby fans, IGN's Rebekah asked Kumazaki if HAL Laboratory would consider remaking old Kirby games, with mention of the recent Kirby’s Return to Dream Land Deluxe. In response, Kumazaki shared that the teams' goal is to “provide a new gameplay experience. The developers won’t just remake Kirby games for the sake of it - only if there’s something new they can add.”

All in all, it looks like the future of Kirby is bright, round, and very pink. No matter what this hungry puff ball ends up doing in future games, there’s no doubt in my mind that HAL Laboratory will do Kirby the justice the beloved Nintendo mascot deserves.

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Kirby and the Forgotten Land

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Kelsey Raynor avatar

Kelsey Raynor

Guides Writer

Kelsey's (she/they) passion for gaming began with Resident Evil, and it's been rather difficult to get them to shut up about horror games since. When they're not scoping out new scares or commiserating the cancellation of Silent Hills, they can often be found fawning over cute Pokémon and Kirby, or being very average at FPS games. They've been in games media for 3 years.
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