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Kirby's Dream Land DX

Hack of Kirby's Dream Land

Description:

Just like Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening DX and Tetris DX, Dream Land DX is a port of the monochrome Gameboy game to the Gameboy color. Experience Masahiro Sakurai’s first game in an all new light.

ROM / ISO Information:

  • Database match: Kirby's Dream Land (USA, Europe)
  • Database: No-Intro: Game Boy/Color (v. 20180815-131105)
  • File/ROM SHA-1: 90979BAA1D0E24B41B5C304C5DDAF77450692D5A
  • File/ROM CRC32: 40F25740

Links:

Screenshots:


Credits:

Credits
ContributorType of contributionListed credit
HunderlemOriginal HackingDisassembly

User Review Information

A professional hack with some small issues.

Reviewed By: The Beaky Buccaneer on 04 Mar 2021

Kirby’s Dream Land DX is a very good colourisation hack for the original Kirby’s Dream Land, with official-looking colour palettes that appear to take cues from Kirby’s Adventure for the NES - the sequel to Kirby’s Dream Land, which was also the first full-colour game in the series.

This hack leaves the original game intact, barring the colourisation, and that was definitely the right choice to make here - there wasn’t any need for changes to the graphics and gameplay, and so they haven’t been altered.

Kirby’s Dream Land DX is not without issues, though the problems that it has are VERY small relative to its level of polish.

Most noticeable for me is the way that the music played during the pre-stage animations will speed up like crazy for the last few notes, which I presume is a side-effect of running a game written for the monochrome hardware in the faster colour-mode of the Game Boy Colour - much like how official colourised releases, like the Japan-only colour version of Donkey Kong Land 3, also have timing errors for the same reason. The music also speeds up like this whenever you go through a door or there is any other sort of screen transition.

Graphics-wise, this hack loses the original game’s fade-transition and flicker effects, though I didn’t feel that this, or the music issue, detracted from the experience; Those who didn’t grow up with the original version of the game probably wouldn’t notice it at all!

The only major giveaway that this isn’t an official release comes in the form of a large graphical glitch appearing where King Dedede is supposed to be during the character-roll that is shown after the credits in the Extra Game mode.

That said, the palettes have been well-chosen, and aside from the minor problems mentioned above, everything about this hack feels true to official releases in the series. It would have been nice to see some blue on the face of King Dedede, since he’s a Little Blue Penguin (a real-world penguin species found in New Zealand, so named for their bright blue feathers; There’s also a darker-coloured cousin species in Australia that’s known as the Fairy Penguin), but I can see that technical limitations must have gotten in the way of doing this - still, he looks pretty much as he does in Kirby’s Adventure for the NES, and that look works perfectly well on the Game Boy Colour.

Before now, the only other option for a (loose) colour equivalent to Kirby’s Dream Land was the Spring Breeze sub-game from Kirby Super Star on the SNES, and in Kirby Super Star Ultra on the Nintendo DS, which is often mistaken for a remake but which actually cuts out a huge amount of content from an already brief game - hopefully this hack will let those who aren’t familiar with the original release (as well as the monochrome-averse) enjoy this excellent short-but-sweet game in its much more charming true form.

I still prefer the monochrome original, and perhaps others who already know Kirby’s Dream Land very well might also swing that way, but I still highly recommend this hack as an excellent way to play this classic in a whole new light. Highly recommended to existing fans and newcomers alike - this really should have been an official release back in the day!

I tested this game in the versions of RetroPie for both the Raspberry Pi 4 Model B and the Raspberry Pi Zero W, and it worked as described above with both. I also played it on real Game Boy Colour hardware, where it also works as described in my review.

Version 1.3 Recommended - Yes

User Reviews
HeadlineAuthorDateVersionRecommended
A professional hack with some small issues.The Beaky Buccaneer04 Mar 20211.3Yes
Great hack, but a few minor nitpicks!JoshWood9930 Jul 20201.3Yes
The only reason to revisit the original Kirby's DreamlandSupergamerguy28 Jul 20201.3Yes
A dream come true!ShadowOne33324 Jun 20201.3Yes
Wonderful introduction, great on GBAEvilJagaGenius24 Jun 20201.2Yes
Almooost there, but not quite yet!ifightdragons23 Jun 20201.3No
A Good First DraftGreat Hierophant21 Jun 20201.2Yes
This looks beautifulSprite21 Jun 20201.2Yes
Kirby's Dream Come True!stry899321 Jun 20201.2Yes