Balloon Kid took my favorite part of Balloon Fight and turned it into a game. This is an expanded version of the Balloon Trip part of Balloon Fight. It seems to have dropped the parts I don’t like and expanded on the stuff I enjoyed.
Balloon Fight was a clone of Joust. It was a very good clone, but it was still based on another game. Balloon Kid is based on the Balloon Trip part of that game.
I can’t say that it is original, as it feels a little like other games that might be more obscure. Specifically, it feels a little like I’m playing Chubby Cherub.
TLDR: Balloon Kid is a fun little game made from the best part of Balloon Fight.
Balloon Kid has an interesting history. It is a sequel to Balloon Fight and was released on the Game Boy, Famicom, and the Game Boy Color.
It was released in North America in 1990 and Europe in 1991. I find it odd that it wasn’t released in Japan as Balloon Kid. In Japan in 1992, it was released as a Hello Kitty game.
This Hello Kitty version was released on the Famicom. I’m not sure why it was released in this way. The name of this game is Hello Kitty World. I do understand why we didn’t get it in the US. In 1992, anime wasn’t as popular as it is now, and a game with the Hello Kitty license would have been passed over for a localization.
Japan eventually got Balloon Kid in 2000 when it was released on the Game Boy Color.
This is a side-scrolling platforming game. You don’t have an attack, as far as I can tell. You have to press the “A” button to flap your little arms.
The game works on momentum. Once you stop tapping the “A” button, you will start to fall as you lose momentum. Sometimes you have to do this to avoid spikes, birds, flames, and other weird stuff that the game throws at you.
Your character carries two balloons which act as a life bar. You can take two hits before you lose a life. The first hit takes away one of your balloons, and the second hit kills you.
This is a throwback to Balloon Fight and Joust. In Balloon Fight, you have the same system for hit points. Two balloons represent your character’s hit points, and when you get hit once, you lose a balloon.
For some reason, you can let go of your balloons. This does let you get some items, but you do have to quickly get back to them so you can complete the level. This is one of the strange things in the game.
You move your character from right to left and do your best to avoid obstacles along the way. This mirrors the Balloon Trip section of Balloon Fight. There are a few differences between the two games.
I think that Balloon Kid is the better game. It’s less like a Joust clone and is more like its own game. In Balloon Kid, the graphics are better, the gameplay is better, and the controls are better than in Balloon Fight.
Just like Balloon Fight and Joust, you want to drop down on some of the enemies. If you hit them head-on or from below, your character will take a hit.
I have to compare Balloon Kid to Balloon Fight. This isn’t a fair comparison due to the age of Balloon Fight and the graphical limitations in the early days of the NES. This is one of those cases where the Game Boy game looks better than the NES.
Balloon Fight is a simple game to look at. Your character moves across a black screen and avoids stars and some enemies while you’re doing the Balloon Trip stage. The main game is the same, except there is no scrolling, and it’s more of a single-screen arcade game.
Balloon Kid looks much better. Part of this has to do with the switch to a side-scrolling game. It forced the developers to add more to the game and make it more visually interesting.
This game looks good. Considering the hardware limitations, the developers were able to make the game look great. Some of the enemies could be better. There were times when I wasn’t sure what I was trying to avoid.
I think this is a game that can be played repeatedly. It feels like one of those games where the challenge is just right that you would want to keep playing when you die.
You can try to collect all the items or try to speed run the game. It is one of those games that might be fun to play and then come back to it later.
You can’t save the game, so it makes you repeatably play through the same levels. It’s one of those games that reminds me of a shooter. It isn’t a shooter, but it has that same style of gameplay where you need to learn the pattern of the game.
7.5/10. It is a fun game, but there isn’t much to it.
- Pick-up and Play.
- The controls are easy to learn.
- You don’t need to play for hours to learn the game.
- There is no story. So, if you’re looking for something like that, this isn’t the game for you.
- There aren’t many game modes.
- Two player mode requires another Game Boy, a link cable, and a second copy of the game.
I don’t have a lot of memories of Balloon Kid or Balloon Fight. I’ve also never played Hello Kitty World. I would have liked to borrow this game from a friend. I also think I would have rather rented Balloon Fight instead of buying it.
Even back in the early 90s, this wasn’t the kind of game that I would have asked for when my birthday or Christmas came around. It isn’t a bad game. I just think it wouldn’t have been worth buying.
This would have been a good game for a car trip or as a distraction from having to talk with my cousins.