Promotional art in the United States featuring Kirby has always had an angry tilt, while the character is nothing but lovable pink puffball smiles in his native Japan. According to Kirby: Triple Deluxe director Shinya Kumazaki, a "strong, tough Kirby that's really battling hard is a more appealing sign of Kirby" for North American audiences.

"For the Japanese versions we are, at [Kirby series developer] HAL, involved in everything throughout development, including the package design. The most powerful image of Kirby is that cute image, we think that's the one that appeals to the widest audience," Kumazaki told GameSpot. Kumazaki says that a cute Kirby has better appeal in Japan, where the character's "cuteness is his biggest draw."

"Feedback and insight" to Kirby developer HAL from Nintendo of America, which controls promotional materials for the region, points to a region that prefers marketing materials and box art with an edgier character. Despite this, Kumazaki believes that the decision to adjust Kirby's attitude "depends on the title."

Kirby: Triple Deluxe launches on the 3DS on May 2. In his review, Joystiq's Danny Cowan said it "doesn't succeed on all fronts, but the majority of its campaign is a joy to play."
[Image: Nintendo]
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Kirby: Triple Deluxe (Launch Screens)

This article was originally published on Joystiq.