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Kid Icarus: Uprising

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Pit’s inclusion in Super Smash Bros. Brawl confused at least a few people. Not everyone was aware (especially the little ones) that Kid Icarus was a game released by Nintendo, and even fewer had actually played the game for the NES. Kid Icarus was one of the better games for the system, but they strangely chose to bury the franchise. Fortunately, Pit and company have come soaring out of the skies for this 3DS update, and it’s a fantastic game.

Right from the title screen, Kid Icarus: Uprising is a beautiful-looking addition to the 3DS library. Its vibrant, colorful graphics look wonderful, and the 3D effect is better than most on the system. Battling in the sky against Pit’s classic foes is a high point for 3DS visuals, and the excellent design works just as well when the fight moves to the ground.

The gameplay is no slouch, either. This is where Kid Icarus: Uprising shines as bright as the god himself. Each of the 25 stages is filled with interesting foes from Pit’s past, as well as many new ones joining the fray. The first part of most stages is the “on-rails” aerial battle, that plays similarly to a shoot ‘em up game. Your little gamer will frequently be dodging and weaving through all kinds of attacks, playfully blasting Pit’s adversaries as they jet across the screen. Uprising features hundreds of weapons to defeat these enemies: from swords, to claws or cannons. Once the enemies have been dispatched, the game moves to ground level, playing more like a traditional action-platformer game. Each stage culminates in a boss fight, where massive, screen-filling monsters attempt to end Pit’s quest.

The later stages of Uprising are no joke, and the game comes with a built-in difficulty scale that can be modified to suit the skill level of any player. Casual gamers can play on Intensity Level 2, while more advanced players can bet hearts (currency for everything in the game) to up the difficulty. Some of the best weapons in the game can only be found at the highest difficulty levels, making the challenge worth it for anyone brave enough.

Once the main campaign is completed, players can pit (get it?) their skills against each other in two online multiplayer modes. Your kid can equip their angel with any of the weapons found or created in the main game, then battle it out in teams. Battles take place arena-style, and end when the last angel is left standing. These modes can be played online or locally with friends, adding a large amount of replay value. Ultimately, Kid Icarus: Uprising earns its place in any mini-gamer’s 3DS library. The touch-screen controls can be awkward at times, but otherwise, Uprising’s flaws are outshined by what it does right: reinvigorates great franchise with an amazing, fun game for all ages.

Here’s some gameplay from the NES version to jog your memory:

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