E3 2011: Kid Icarus: Uprising

E3 2011: Kid Icarus: Uprising

While Project Sora’s Kid Icarus: Uprising launch on the 3DS has been no secret the past few months, E3 brought about new details regarding Pit’s next daring adventure against the forces of darkness, including a tentative launch date, some nifty new features and a multiplayer mode.

First up is the launch date. There was a lot of speculation that Uprising would be a launch title–if not something we’d be seeing in the second wave of releases (obviously neither of those came to pass). According to Nintendo, Uprising is currently slated for release sometime around the holiday season this year, meaning we’ve still got a fair number of months before we get to take flight with gaming’s first angel. It also means we’ll be seeing Uprising release 25 years–to the day if it launches on December 10th–after it debuted on the NES.

Also along with E3 came new eye candy for us gamers to drool over–well some of us at any rate–during our long wait time. So without further ado, here’s a video trailer from E3.

Here’s a quick rundown plot-wise of what’s happening in Uprising, in case you didn’t watch the video. Medusa’s back, yep that’s right, the Medusa whose trouble-making in the original Kid Icarus caused us to curse as we failed over and over again to get past her nefarious minions and traps. Only this time she’s pulling out all of the stops and bringing in the big guns this time. To counter Medusa’s hordes of minions from the Underworld, the goddess of light–Palutena–dispatches her most powerful angel – Pit.

Introduced in the video, but not expanded on too much, were a mysterious human wielding a two-handed sword and some malevolent looking fiend in plate armor. What importance they play in the plot is not known, but it does add intrigue  to say the least.

The direction Masahiro Sakurai and Project Sora look to be taking with Uprising seems exciting. The stages kick off with an air battle for about five minutes that takes place from a first-person perspective for an on-rails shooter section. Afterward Pit will lose the “Power of Flight” granted by Palutena and take to the ground, switching to a third-person perspective, in order to serve up some divine justice using a variety of weapons ranging from claws to swords on the ground and bows to a large bazooka-styled gun in the skies (this isn’t the Kid Icarus you played–if you did anyways–growing up).

From what the video showed, the combat seems very high-octane and it showcases the smooth and graceful moves one would expect from an angel (looks like Pit’s days in Smash Bros. paid off). It’s a good thing he can fight like that too, because this time Medusa’s not holding out, throwing out Dragons and other gargantuan beasts like Hellhounds that easily dwarf Pit.

Uprising will also provide a multiplayer mode featuring what appears to be underlings in Palutena’s army. Teams begin with a number of points. Players choose their preferred weapon and work with their team to whittle down the opposing team’s points to zero. The last member of a team who is defeated is transformed into Pit to help even things up, the other team must eliminate Pit to claim victory. There was no mention of whether the multiplayer would be done over local wireless or the Nintendo WiFi Connection, so we can only watch and wait.

The controls seem a bit odd. According to what we learned from E3, there are two control schemes: a right-handed scheme, and a to-be-announced left-handed control scheme. Right-handed players will hold the system in their left hand, keeping their thumb on the circle pad to move Pit around, and a finger on the L-Button to attack (using either range or melee attacks depending on the weapon equipped) while the right hand manages the stylus to target things via touch screen. While the the lefty control scheme has not been figured out yet, it was mentioned that one was “being prepared.”

The graphics look pretty sharp for a 3DS title, from what the video and screenshots show at any rate. The environments look varied and unique, expanding the world well beyond what the NES and Game Boy could do to Pit’s other outings. From what we’ve seen, Pit will take flight through Skyworld, space and other vistas and descend to various places on the ground (the streets of what appears to be a human city for example) to do battle with Medusa’s minions.

The game will also support the 3DS’ Augmented Reality system. Players can collect cards which cause the characters on the card to appear–animated–when viewed through 3D camera. The characters on the cards may also face off when  placed near each other.

Keep checking back for further updates on Uprising, and please check out the gallery of screenshots below. Please note that these are 2D images of a 3DS title, the 3D effect may only be observed on the system itself.


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