High scores in Kirby's Dream Land

Kirby’s Dream Land was the first “modern” (post-Atari) video game I remember playing, and was certainly among the first I owned, along with that good old grey brick. I had been meaning to revisit it lately, so with the help of an emulator and my trusty Logitech gamepad, I did just that tonight. It was almost as frustrating as I remembered and didn’t keep me occupied for too long.

I was still hungry for some old-timey vidya, so I tried to remember what other games I used to own. (My first Game Boy, along with Kirby, the other cartridges I owned, and a slew of the rest of my toys were stolen in our move to Connecticut, but that is a story for another time.) Looking through a list, I remembered Kirby’s Pinball Land. YES! I had totally forgotten about this game and how it consumed me.

I started playing it and it sucked. I hate pinball. Also, where were all the features I remembered? This is just Kirby as a ball and some flippers. This is the wrong game!

A little Googling brought me to 1up’s complete history of Kirby, which helped me to realize that the game I was thinking of was in fact Kirby’s Block Ball. YES! I had totally forgotten about this game and how it consumed me.

I started playing it and suddenly I was in elementary school again, tagging along with my mom and little brother to his play group, perfectly content to ignore everything and bounce Kirby around on some paddles. The sound effects, the cut screens, the powerups, all exactly as I remembered them. It was simply delightful.