The Legendary Starfy



Cute, surprisingly robust platformer geared for kids.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Starfy is undeniably good natured and is ready and willing to risk himself to help others in need. Plus, players can work co-operatively, with one taking the reins of Starfy’s sister, Starly.

Violence & scariness

Starfy has a spinning attack that stuns his adversaries. He can also transform into creatures with various offensive abilities, such as a monster that breathes fire. Fighting is very mild—enemies simply appear stunned and go tumbling off the screen. 

Not applicable

Starfy has starred in several games in Japan and had cameos in games like Super Smash Bros. Brawl, but this is his first real adventure in North America.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is a simple platform adventure geared for kids. There is no coarse language or sexuality, and the violence, while frequent, is quite mild -- Starfy can perform spin attacks and transform into a few different creatures with unique abilities, such as dragon that breathes fire. Parents should also know that there is good gaming value here, thanks to the game's lengthy and highly replayable solo adventure and support for single-card co-operative multiplayer.

What's it about?

Starfy, a cute yellow starfish that can swim, jump, spin, and transform into various creatures, has been around for a while in Japan, but THE LEGENDARY STARFY -- officially his fifth adventure -- is the first Starfy game to make it to North America.

It's a relatively simple platformer that will let junior players get a feel for moving characters around in 2-D environments and contending with conventional bad guys. Hints appear on the bottom screen, there are plenty of arrow signs showing the way to the end of each level, and enemies typically move slowly and in very recognizable patterns. It also introduces kids to traditional features found in more complex platformers, such as secret rooms and unlockable mini-games. Add in the local area network multiplayer features -- a co-op mode lets a second player take control of Starfy's sister, Starly -- and you have a surprisingly lengthy and robust kids game.

Is it any good?


It doesn't break much new ground, but The Legendary Starfy should prove fun for gamers in training. Learning how to control Starfy ought not take more than a few minutes, regardless of the player's experience level, and his various moves -- spinning to attack foes, double-jumping, swimming quickly -- are fun to perform. Plus, you'll rarely go more than a few seconds without finding some new challenge, whether it's breaking open a crack in the wall to find a hidden room or engaging in a brief side mission, such as a race or a scavenger hunt.

The story, which plays out via quick and often confusing still images and exclamation mark-laden text dialogue, is scattershot at best, but you don't need to understand the goofy narrative to enjoy the action. As introductory platformers go, The Legendary Starfy is a keeper.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the game’s charming hero, Starfy. Does he seem familiar? In which other Nintendo games might you have seen him? Are his abilities original enough to distinguish Starfy from other, similar Nintendo heroes, such as Kirby? What age group do you think this game is best suited for? Do you think older players could have fun with it? 

Game details

Platforms:Nintendo DS, Nintendo DSi
Available online?Not available online
Release date:June 8, 2009
ESRB rating:E for Mild Cartoon Violence

This review of The Legendary Starfy was written by

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent of a 8 year old Written byvelveta December 23, 2010
Kid, 9 years old November 25, 2009

one of those age-appropiate action/adventure games

The game is pretty fun. Violence is limited to some spinning atacks that put Xs on the sea creature that you balttle when it is defeated and it will just disapear
Kid, 5 years old July 2, 2009


I can not figure out how to start the game? What do I do. John Green


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