By Rich Gallagher
NYC Dads Group
Nintendo recently let our family sample Kirby Triple Deluxe and Mario Golf World Tour among other of the latest family-friendly games for their handheld systems: the 3DS and its even more kid-friendly little brother, the Nintendo 2DS.
Kirby Triple Deluxe (available retail and for download via the Nintendo eShop for $34.99)
Going all the way back to his GameBoy debut in 1992, Kirby has hit all the right notes every time out, especially with younger players. Triple Deluxe follows suit with large, cute character designs, short courses and simple, elegant controls.
My daughter Red would watch me play Kirby’s Epic Yarn when she was a baby, and at least has a passing familiarity with the character. We hopped right on this game (“let’s do the one with the pink guy!”) and she liked it. I’m impressed with how Nintendo continues to make subtle tweaks, such as how Kirby can now suck up pieces of scenery to gain new abilities, that make the entire game feel fresh without overcomplicating it. You don’t see that often in franchise that has lasted more than 20 years.
Mario Golf World Tour (available retail and for download via the Nintendo eShop for $29.99)
This was far and away our favorite game from the event. Golf games really loan themselves well to handheld systems, because you can always find time to play one quick hole while you’re on the train or in line at the post office. And while there have been a few other Mario Golf titles on other Nintendo systems through the years, it’s not as much of a staple franchise as the Mario Kart series has become.
At its core, World Tour is a series of geometry puzzles that ratchet up nicely in difficulty. But it’s accessible enough that Red was planning her own shots using Mario-style power ups after just a few holes. World Tour also brings to the yard some fun multiplayer modes, downloadable content and live in-game events that add Callaway golf equipment to the proceedings. It all feels a little more grown up than I was expecting from a Mario links title, but it honestly all works well together.
Golf was the first sport I picked up as a kid, and I would *love* it if my daughters showed an interest in the real-world game. Mario Golf World Tour may just be the perfect lens for their earliest experience with the mental, “puzzle” elements of golf that keep weekend hackers like me coming back for more.
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Rich Gallagher is an involved dad and full-time PR guy. He helps coordinate New Dad Boot Camp classes for NYC Dads Group and is always on the lookout for volunteer veteran dads.
He resides in Long Island City, Queens, with his two daughters, wife, and a rescue Schnoodle.
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