My first run through Kirby’s Epic Yarn took about eight hours. After beating Yin-Yarn, I found I’d only completed 59% of the game; There are many World Doors I haven’t unlocked yet, and a lot more music CD’s to find.
The game’s incredibly fun, imaginative, and surprising, with an amazing musical score that gets better and better as the journey progresses.
I have one complaint about the game, and I didn’t realize it until I was watching the closing credits.
Usually, when I finish a major Nintendo release, I feel some emotion as the credits are rolling, even in plot-less games like Mariokart; Some kind of attachment to the characters has usually formed by that time.
Not with Kirby’s Epic Yarn, though. Watching the credits, I felt nothing. I’d had a lot of fun, and I think the game’s a work of art, but the story is so deliberately shallow and glib that it makes Super Mario Galaxy look like The Lord of the Rings. There’s no real threat, Kirby’s more interested in eating cake than saving anyone, and McDonald’s Hamburglar is a scarier villain than Yin-Yarn.
The narrator was a mistake. He does a great job: I’d hire him to record children’s books anytime, but I think no narration at all would have been more effective. The game’s creators put a lot of work into telling a story that most people will skip through. As ridiculous as Mario’s plots are, at least the guy genuinely wants to save that princess. Kirby just wants to dance and eat.
Even with that complaint, the game’s still a keeper. While you’re playing it, the lack of a compelling story doesn’t matter. Every level of Kirby’s quest is fun, and there are emotional moments…but they’re abstract ones brought about when the visuals and music click together incredibly well–And that happens a lot in this game.
I highly recommend Kirby’s Epic Yarn. It’s insanely creative and fun. Just don’t expect much from the narrative. N64’s Yoshi’s Story–which involved a short quest to save a Super Happy Tree–had a more involving plot. Eee-aaaa-ohhhh.