Question about "Kid Icarus"

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DRW
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Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by DRW » Sat Dec 12, 2020 10:08 pm

For the people who have finished "Kid Icarus": Are the game's contents also as obscure and hidden as in "Metroid"?

In the original "Metroid", there's stuff in the most incredible places:

You want another energy container?
You need to shoot that one random block at the ceiling up there.

You want to find the way?
Crawl into a ball, use a bomb to catapult yourself into the air, then press left on the d-pad and you'll move into that invisible passageway in the wall.
Or shoot those random blocks on the ground to get to the quicksand which isn't quicksand this time, but just a layer of sand with a whole area underneath.

Without a guide and if you have never seen "Metroid" before, you can potentially run around this game for hours without any progress. And discovering secrets is often purely by chance.

On the other hand, a game like "Faxanadu" can easily be cleared in a relatively straightforward way by only using the manual and whatever the characters tell you in the game. They never pull off crap like "You have to hit the 23rd block to advance."

And now I'd like to know how "Kid Icarus" works, but I don't want to spoil myself by watching a longplay:

I know the game has some exploration and is not as linear as "Castlevania III".
But is it just exploration in the way that, if you keep track of the rooms you visited, you will eventually definitely 100 % find the exit and every item you need?
Or does this game also have "Zelda I"-, "Metroid"- and "Castlevania II"-like "bomb this random wall", "burn this random bush", "play the flute to make the water disappear", "use this stone at this wall and crouch for 20 seconds" secrets?

If we ignore the challenge of dying by enemy impact: Can I play "Kid Icarus" blindly without searching around through the game's world for hours to find the exit or some stuff that I need?
My game "City Trouble": www.denny-r-walter.de/city.htm

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rainwarrior
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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by rainwarrior » Sat Dec 12, 2020 10:18 pm

Icarus is fairly linear and I think there might be a few secret/obscure things but nothing you need to get through the game.

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by dink » Sat Dec 12, 2020 10:27 pm

I love this game, but, I myself have only played the FDS version: Hikari Shinwa - Palutena no Kagami. I think the only difference between it and Kid Icarus is in the ending - and how you can haggle in the shops to lower the price (mic + B button on p2's controller)

Kid Icarus is kinda more like a platformer where you can buy things or even enter challenge rooms to get things to help you on your journey, the game can be won by only collecting some basic essentials like the longer shooting bow, and the life reserve.

I think you should read the manual for a more in-depth explanation, or at least the story about how the levels are laid out in the little story at the beginning. Here's a beautiful pdf C/O Nintendo: https://www.nintendo.co.jp/clv/manuals/ ... -NAAVE.pdf (Kid Icarus US version manual)

The only confusing part of the game -- to me, is the fortress levels - they're kinda maze-like and you can get lost - but at the same time - the awesomely dark syncopatic music and super cool boss fight at the end of the fortress level makes up for it. Each spirit you save (looks like a stone knight armour) by hitting it with the hammer will act as an Option (a-la Gradius) during the boss fight.

have fun :)

best regards,
- dink

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by Pokun » Sun Dec 13, 2020 8:17 am

I also have the FDS version, although I grew up playing the NES version. There are actually many small differences between them, and I summarized the main ones here. A big difference is of course sound, as the FDS version uses the expansion audio.

Yeah Kid Icarus is nothing like Metroid other than that it's based on the same engine. Every third level is a fortress and those are the only non-linear levels. They are basically like Zelda 1 dungeons from a sideview, but you need to buy a pen and a map (or more like a piece of grid paper) just to make Pit fill in the map for you (but you could always draw it yourself). As demon hearts (or just hearts, used as a currency in this world) are not that easy to come by, this can stall you as you have to grind for more. There are only 3 fortresses though, so the pain is limited.

There are also some other annoyances (Eggplant wizards in fortresses and Pluton once you get out of the underworld), and some secrets you are unlikely able to find on your own (the credit card). But there are no bomb-a-random-rock kind of thing like in Metroid and Zelda. You might want to kill as many monsters as possible so that you level up at the end of each course, and so that you pass Zeus' evaluation in the sacred chamber. Getting a bad ending is actually harder than getting a good one as you have to make sure you don't become too strong, which makes the game much harder.

One more slightly annoying thing in Kid Icarus is that they left out the "UP+A on controller II on the PAUSE screen" to save. It works in both Metroid and the Zelda games, but in Kid Icarus you are forced to kill yourself whenever you wanna save (or see the password). If you have Water of Life bottles or Feathers, killing yourself takes more time (but you always save the state you were at, at the start of the level). It's one of the things that feels a bit unfinished with this game. The developers were pressed for time to finish this game after Metroid were finished.


Once you beat this game I also recommend the Game Boy game Myths and Monsters. It's a bit different and it has Pythagoras as an enemy throwing triangles at you. It was strangely unreleased in Japan (until the VC version for 3DS) so there is only one version.

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by dink » Sun Dec 13, 2020 8:48 am

Pokun,
Thanks for the HIkari Shinwa / Kid Icarus differences link & writeup, that info is really nice to know.
Question: In Hikari Shinwa FDS is it possible to save without dieing first? how?
side question: Is it possible to save in Akumajou Dracula FDS without dieing also? - if so, how?

best regards,
- dink

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by Pokun » Sun Dec 13, 2020 9:54 am

No as I said you need to die to save, this is the same for both FDS and NES versions. Thankfully saving (and loading the save) doesn't affect the ending though, only choosing CONTINUE does.

Dracula 1 and Dracula 2 both also seems to require dying to save. The manuals (FDS versions) doesn't mention any other way, and are actually quite brief in explaining this (they never say that you need to choose SAVE to actually save, they only mentions that it's possible to store progression in a file).

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DRW
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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by DRW » Sun Dec 13, 2020 5:07 pm

Thanks for the information. I might give the game a try.
My game "City Trouble": www.denny-r-walter.de/city.htm

dink
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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by dink » Sun Dec 13, 2020 6:44 pm

Pokun,
That clears up misunderstanding on my part, thank you :)

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by gauauu » Mon Dec 14, 2020 9:24 am

As a warning: the game has a really weird difficulty curve. It gets hard really quick, then you hit the middle of the game, and it becomes so easy that it's a bit boring. Then the difficulty spikes again in the final fortress near the end.

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by Pokun » Mon Dec 14, 2020 10:44 am

Yeah and this is also kind of related to the way you grow stronger in the game.

Considering how badly balanced and rushed the game is, it's kind of strange that it's as celebrated as it is. Similar things could be said about Metroid. As a kid I thought both games were very hard, and we could only ever beat Kid Icarus of the two.

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by gauauu » Mon Dec 14, 2020 3:34 pm

Yeah. Really, I think Metroid was an amazing game at its core, but with a ton of blemishes that made it pretty rough in practice.

Kid Icarus is just a mediocre, poorly designed mess. I still like it, mostly from nostalgia, but I'd go as far as to say it's not a good game.

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by Gilbert » Mon Dec 14, 2020 7:40 pm

I think Metroid became an instant classic due to it being one of the early pioneers of the "open-world" discovery genre of games, regardless of its other qualities.

For Hikari Shinwa, instead of being praised as one of the greatest games like in the west, in Japan it's considered to be a bakage (i.e. stupid/silly game). Note that bakage != kusoge (rubbish/bad game), but the Japanese are still surprised by its popularity in the outside world. (Maybe they tuned down the stupidity during localisation?)

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by rainwarrior » Mon Dec 14, 2020 8:33 pm

I think Pit being a character on the Captain N: the Game Master cartoon is solely responsible for me being interested in Kid Icarus as a kid.

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by Pokun » Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:48 am

Heh, I never saw the Captain N cartoon, but in the Valiant comics Pit was one of the main characters (along with princess Lana, Captain N, his dog and Samus). His name was literary "Kid Icarus" though, not Pit. Guess the author didn't read the manual, or beat the game.

I had no idea the game wasn't as popular in Japan though. I guess one reason both Metroid and Kid Icarus was popular is because both introduced some, but different, RPG features into the platform genre. I always thought it was neat that there were shops that you could buy things in, and even hospitals with a cute nurse. The fortresses were exciting and scary like in Zelda, but also frustrating at the same time. Besides it was a good looking game, with a defined Greek mythology theme, making it much more memorable (who can forget the eggplant wizards?).
In Japan there were just many more games to choose from, and no lack of RPGs as the genre boomed. Being a cartridge game instead of a disk system exclusive, did probably also help it in the west (but the same thing could be said about Zelda which was very popular in Japan as well).

The localization didn't change too much of the balance problems I think, though I'm not sure as it was a long time since I last played the NES version. It does change the ending criteria to make more sense, but it's probably still a bit harder to get the bad endings than the good ones in general, as you have to be careful to not max out too many parameters.

I still like both versions of the game, and I don't really think it's subpar. Just a bit rough around the edges like Metroid is.
The Game Boy sequels of both games are both more polished and less frustrating than the original games are. I've read that they both share the same basic engine, just like the two originals do.

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Re: Question about "Kid Icarus"

Post by rainwarrior » Tue Dec 15, 2020 12:43 pm

I like the GB Icarus game more than the NES one, myself.

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