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Kirby's Star Stacker
  opened by paleface at 02:29:27 09/20/05  
  last modified by paleface at 12:27:18 03/05/24  
  paleface [sys=GB; cat=Puzzle; reg=NA]
A fantabulous puzzle game from the Kirbster, who was so golden on the Game Boy. Pairs of your weird animal friends fall, block-like, onto similar animals; line them up as they land and the matched pairs clear themselves out, taking out any star blocks that happen to be in between them. But the bad bird dude hangs around, banging his fist to raise the pile higher, and if it hits the top and blocks your descending blocks, it's game over. But clear enough star blocks and it's on to the next level to do it some more.
But Kirby cranks the block-droppin' puzzle formula up a notch or three with combos. There being only uh three or four different animals, and two blocks dropping at once, it's relatively easy to get one to match one pair, then another to fall into place as a result of the blocks clearing from the previous match, to form a new match. That's a combo, and it doesn't necessarily have to stop at two. Certain levels in the Challenge mode, for instance, can be cleared in a single pair drop; so long as it's dropped in the right place, rotated the right way, a cascading series of combos begins, with Kirby dishing out more and more bonus stars in between combos, which, falling on the pile, can form combos of their own in between your combos, and then Kirby gets even more excited, and throws more stars...
This has been called "Stargasm," by toastyfrog I think it was, and a more apt term cannot be found. Hunched down in the corner of the screen, Kirby simply loses it, and it's a joy to behold. Jolly Kirby sounds and animations accompany all the puzzle action, and I really don't know of a game that has just been more Kirby.
Once you get into the swing of things, the game isn't all that hard, and you'll clear through the hundred-some main stages pretty quick. You can always try to beat your previous time, for each stage, although it only saves progress per skill level, not times per stage. Challenge mode, with pre-configured block piles designed to get taken out in certain tricky ways, often foiling you with blockades that take two matches to clear, can remain pretty tough on the higher speeds. And then there's Time Attack, where again you can keep re-challenging yourself once you get through it all the first time. Really, the game is such a simple joy to play that you'll find yourself gleefully picking it up and sending Kirby into ecstasies again and again, just for the sheer Kirbiness of it all.

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