Kirby Air Ride- HAL Laboratory
Nickname: “Friendship Tester”
This game shows that another person can either choose to work with you…or against you! Some people choose to coast along and collect power-ups together while others choose to grief and kill you last second to take all of your upgrades for themselves >:)
In this iteration of Kirby, you see our pink puffball riding around on various versions of his iconic Warpstar. With multiple different modes Kirby Air Ride proves to be a very entertaining racing game with a cartoony twist. Our hero is featured in a few different game modes such as City Trial, Air Ride, and Top Ride.
City Trial. This mode was THE Kirby Air Ride. In this game type, you are first challenged to a power-up gathering, open world styled, free for all where all players must try to collect the most upgrades they can and fight to get their hands on the best cars including the lovely Dragoon and fierce Hydra.
In City Trial there are many different breakable objects including red, blue, and green boxes. These boxes each contain different types of items whether they be weapons, food, or stats enhancers.
Kirby after collecting the Sword ability in Kirby Air Ride
You’d think that with it’s name being in the title that this game mode would be important! Sadly that is not totally true. While it is a great game mode with plenty to fight for and unlock, it is overshadowed by the success of the famous City Trial mode. This is in part due to the fact that in this mode, you skip right over stat collecting and go straight into the race, making it more competitive but overall just another racing game with nothing all that different. Still a great mode to switch into for a while if you want to duke it out with your friends.
This is where all the whackos hang out. Top Ride is utter insanity and almost impossible to follow, but it is definitely loads of fun to play. Basically you are given a top-down view of what looks like a board game and are then tasked with navigating the board with an air ride machine like any other race. The controls are quite confusing and a ton of items drop, making for quite the all out battle!
“Light” Stage in Kirby Air Ride’s “Top Ride” mode
Chaos– There is a ton going on all the time in Kirby Air Ride and it is well worth it to explore as much as possible before time runs out
Collection– It is so much fun to see just how far you can push the limits of each car in City Trial through collecting as many stat boosters as it can handle
Colors– This game is so colorful and really fun to look at. Many fan-made HD versions are out for emulation on the PC
Secrets– Like any Gamecube game, this one is riddled with secrets including unclockable car, Characters, and even secret areas to visit
FPS Rate– Sure it didn’t really matter back in the day but the frame rate seriously drops when there are four people on the screen playing at the same time and flying everywhere
Overall this game is a ton of fun to play either by yourself or with friends. There is never a dull moment in this simple yet crazy fun video game. A remake would be absolutely amazing and nostalgic with today’s technology.