A short while ago, I played Kirby’s Dream Buffet. Following the announcement of the game, I was completely ecstatic. You’re telling me they’re putting my favourite pink puff ball into what, essentially, looks like a tasty version of Fall Guys? And it’s going to be co-op? And it’s on the Switch!?
I was ready to make Kirby’s Dream Buffet one of my games of choice at gatherings, placing it on the same pedestal as Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. However, when I actually got my hands on the game, I was left disappointed.
The co-op features that I anticipated were missing. Kirby’s Dream Land felt limited, only allowing for two-player local co-op. Online, I could play with three more friends, but they would then need to buy the game – as well as have their own Switch device to hand. I had my qualms with the game outside of this, which landed a 2/5 in my review, but it was the lack of four-player local co-op that, to me, made the entire premise of the game feel a little redundant.
However, my prayers have been answered, and I’m sure plenty of other Kirby fans are rejoicing over this, too. No, Nintendo has not implemented four-player local co-op into Kirby’s Dream Buffet. Instead, the publisher and developer has gone one step further – one step beyond – by announcing that not only is Kirby’s Return to Dream Land Deluxe coming to Switch, but it’s going to receive a Switch-friendly overhaul, too.
Kirby’s Return to Dream Land first released on Nintendo Wii in 2011. It’s a 2D side-scroller, as you’ve likely come to expect from the omnipotent pink ball, and was one of the first of the Kirby games to try out 3D models for its characters. Simply put; the game looked good, and offered plenty of platforming fun (even if it was a struggle to play using the Wii remote at times).
What’s better about Return to Dream Land Deluxe, given the problems I had with Dream Buffet, is that this new blast from the past supports local co-op for up to four players. There’s no p**sing about either; your friends can just jump in whenever by picking up a controller. It makes perfect sense that the game would be remade and ported to the Switch, and while it’s no Wind Waker HD, I’m very exciting to coerce my friends into finally playing a Kirby game with me.
Ultimately, Kirby games are approachable for all. That’s why they’re so well-loved. That, in my opinion, means Kirby games make fantastic multiplayer experiences in a local environment; no player needs to feel excluded or inexperienced with Kirby. You’re just a hungry pink blob looking for some satisfaction – something we can all relate to, I’m sure.
Multiplayer, both online and local, is something I certainly hope to see HAL Laboratory and Nintendo lean into more now that they’ve near-perfected making the pink poyo look so great in 3D. On that note, can we also have Nightmare in Dream Land ported to Switch, please?
Kirby’s Return to Dream Land Deluxe will launch on Nintendo Switch on February 24, 2023.