The Legendary Starfy
What parents need to know
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?