- This article contains information for the game; the article for the series can be found here.
Famicom & NES
Kid Icarus (光神話 パルテナの鏡 Hikari Shinwa: Parutena no Kagami, "Light Myth: Palutena's Mirror") is a video game released on the Famicom Disk System in December 1986 in Japan, and on the Nintendo Entertainment System in February 1987 in North America and Europe. It features Pit, the main protagonist of the series, on his quest to defeat Medusa and restore peace to Angel Land.
Get ready for the action and adventure of Greek Mythology translated to the Video Age.
Far away in a kingdom called "Angel Land", the evil goddess Medusa has stolen the Three Sacred Treasures and imprisoned the goddess of light, Palutena. As Kid Icarus, your mission is to find the treasures, destroy Medusa and rescue Palutena from the depths of the Palace in the Sky. To find the treasures you'll travel through ruins collecting weapons and storing power for use in combat against creatures of Medusa's army. Use your bow and arrow to ward off gatekeepers of the Underworld, Overworld and Skyworld as you strive towards your battle against Medusa. Will you survive to restore Palutena's light and return it to "Angel Land"? Only you know.
The Tale of Kid Icarus tells the events of the plot leading up to the start of the game. It is provided in the game's official manual.
The Tale of Kid Icarus"Let us go back to the distant past to an age when the Gods and Man lived together in harmony. There was once a kingdom called "Angel Land." This kingdom was ruled by two beautiful goddesses, Palutena who administered light and Medusa who ruled darkness.
Palace in the Sky and administered light so that man could live in happiness. And bathed in this light man grew food and lived in peace. However, Medusa the goddess of darkness was different. Medusa hated mankind. She took great pleasure in drying up the crops that man took great pains to grow and in turning people into stone statues.
In her anger Palutena changed Medusa into an ugly monster and banished her to the deep, dark Underworld. For being changed into this ugly monster and forced to live in the Underworld, Medusa promised to take over the Palace in the Sky where Palutena lived. So great was Medusa's anger that she joined forces with the monsters and evil spirits of the Underworld and Medusa's army soon began to surpass Palutena's army in strength.
Three Sacred Treasures - the Mirror Shield, the Arrow of Light, and the Wings of Pegasus - away from them. Almost all of the warriors in Palutena's army were turned into stone statues and Palutena herself was imprisoned deep in the Palace of the Sky.
The peaceful realm of Angel Land came to be inhabited by the foul and terrible monsters and was turned into a land of darkness ruled by the wicked Medusa. Locked in the depths of the Palace in the Sky, Palutena's strength was drained to its last. As a last resort, she sought the help of the angel youth Pit who was being held prisoner locked in a deep dungeon in the Underworld.
Pit was a valiant warrior who used to be in charge of Palutena's personal bodyguards. Armed with a bow and arrow brought to him through Palutena's magical strength, Pit attempted an escape from the Underworld. The guard at this time was low in number as Medusa's army had advanced to the Palace in the Sky.
Will Pit be able to restore Palutena's light and return it to Angel Land? Only you can answer that question."
Kid Icarus is a side-scrolling platformer, though the last stage undergoes a genre shift and becomes a side-scrolling shooter instead.
Pit's arrows have only a short range and he has a jump height of about three times his base height; despite having wings, he cannot fly naturally. He can crouch to avoid enemies and even move while crouching at the same speed. However, there are many platforms, such as ice and clouds, that Pit will fall through should he crouch while standing on them. Being damaged will result in a small amount of knockback and very brief invulnerability (less so when standing on a damage tile, such as lava). Pit can walk behind certain objects, such as pillars and plants, but this won't protect him from being damaged by an enemy.
Pit starts off with one segment of health that contains 7 Hit Points. He can earn more segments, each of which contains an additional 8 HP, upon reaching certain score values:
- 2 Segments: 20,000
- 3 Segments: 50,000
- 4 Segments: 100,000
- 5 Segments: 200,000
Pit can obtain three different weapons over the course of the game from Sacred Training Chambers, each of which requires a different amount of health to activate. Once obtained, the first weapon will activate when Pit reaches two segments of health, the second weapon requires three, and the third weapon needs a total of four full segments to activate. When activated, the weapons will remain active for the rest of the game, with the exception of when Pit enters a Fortress.
Pit's mission will take him through four worlds, each with four stages culminating in an intimidating Fortress. Here, Pit must defeat the Gatekeeper of the Fortress and obtain the Sacred Casket. In the last area, Pit must fly through Medusa's remaining forces. After defeating Medusa, Pit will restart the game at level 1-1; however, his score, weapons, total health, strength, Hearts, and Credit Card debt all remain intact, making additional playthroughs easier. However, any password for 1-1 will override Pit's status and restart the game as though it were a new one. Therefore, players should proceed to 1-2 before acquiring the password.
Pit's quest will allow him to explore many chambers. Once Pit leaves a room it's forever sealed, with the exception of Fortress rooms. They include:
- Black Marketeer
- Enemy's Lair
- Hot Spring Chamber
- Sacred Chamber
- Sacred Training Chamber
- Treasure Chamber
Pit's weapons do not necessarily activate when obtained; they require him to reach a certain amount of health before they'll activate automatically. Pit must reach two full segments of health to activate the first weapon he picks up. The second weapon will require three, while the third requires four.
Fortress items disappear when Pit leaves the Fortress that they were found in.
The ending that the player receives is dependent on four requirements:
- Maxed out Hearts (999 Hearts)
- Maxed out health bar (five segments of health)
- Maxed out arrow strength (strength of five)
- Possessing all three enchanted weapons (Fire Arrow, Protective Crystal, and Sacred Bow)
|If the player does not fulfill any of the requirements listed above, Palutena will grant Pit a sickle, making him a farmer.|
|If the player has fulfilled one of the requirements, Pit will be given a helmet, becoming an average troop in Palutena's Army.|
|If the player has fulfilled two of the requirements, Pit will be given a plumed helmet, becoming captain of Palutena's guard.|
|If the player has fulfilled three of the requirements, Palutena will transform Pit into a taller, more muscular angel.|
|If the player has fulfilled all of the requirements, Palutena will transform Pit to make him taller and give him a kiss on the cheek.|
Differences Between Versions
- All music is slightly enhanced in the Famicom version.
- While the NES version uses a password system to restore the player's progress, the Famicom version features three save slots.
- The pause screen has blue bricks in the Famicom version instead of gray, and displays the name of the player's save file at the top. Additionally, all text in the Famicom version is white, with the exception of the Map text, which is green.
- Many sound effects are different in the Famicom version, such as Pit making a low-pitch beep when damaged, or Reapers making a sound akin to shrieking when they spot Pit.
- In the NES version, the player can haggle with shopkeepers by holding A and B on the second controller; in the Famicom version, the player uses the controller's microphone to haggle.
- Instead of the screen automatically scrolling at a set pace when Pit reaches the Palace in the Sky, the screen moves with the player in the Famicom version. Additionally, Pit does not automatically keep himself in the air, as the player must press the jump button to stay aloft.
- Medusa does not appear in her humanoid form in the Famicom version, instead disappearing upon defeat.
- The Famicom version has less requirements for receiving endings, only being dependent on strength level and health.
- The Famicom version does not feature the NES version's best ending; instead, it has an additional worst ending in which Palutena transforms Pit into a Specknose.
- The NES version features credits after the ending, whereas the Famicom version pauses on the ending the player receives before rolling back to the title screen.
- The universe of Kid Icarus borrows heavily from Greco-Roman mythology, as evidenced by its items, monsters, and characters. The story itself is (very) loosely based on the legend of Perseus, a demigod youth who promised King Polydectes he would kill Medusa and retrieve her head. Aided by Athena and even equipped with a mirror shield, he was able to slay her and return from his quest victorious.
- The title Kid Icarus comes from the story of a separate youth, the son of the famous inventor and genius Daedalus. While kept prisoner, Daedalus created a set of human-sized wings, crafted from wood with bird feathers stuck to the frame by wax. Icarus borrowed the wing-frame and flew high into the sky and over the seas. Though Daedalus warned his son not to fly too high to the sun, Icarus disobeyed him and kept flying higher. However, the intense heat from the sun melted the wax binding the feathers to the frame, causing Icarus to fall into the sea.
- Kid Icarus was created by the same designer as Metroid, Gunpei Yokoi. It functions on the same game engine as Metroid. Also, its sequel, Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters, shares the same engine as Metroid II: Return of Samus. The Kid Icarus universe even includes a Metroid-inspired enemy, Komayto, which is said to have come from another planet.
- In Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, a playable demo is offered for Kid Icarus, in which players can test the game out for a short period of time.
|Games in the Kid Icarus series.|
|Main Series||Kid Icarus (3D Classics) • Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters • Kid Icarus: Uprising (Demo)|
|Super Smash Bros.||Super Smash Bros. Brawl • Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS/Wii U • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate|
|Cancelled Games||Super Kid Icarus • Icarus|