Kid Icarus: Uprising

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Kid Icarus: Uprising
新・光神話 パルテナの鏡
New Light Myth: Palutena's Mirror
Publisher: Nintendo

Project Sora

Console: Nintendo 3DS
Genre: Rail shooter, Third-person shooter
Release: Retail:
JP March 22, 2012
NA March 23, 2012
EU March 23, 2012
AUS March 29, 2012

Nintendo eShop:

JP October 31, 2013
NA November 7, 2013
EU April 9, 2014
Ratings: CERO: B
ESRB: E10+
PEGI: 12
Predecessor: Of Myths and Monsters
Successor: N/A
StrategyWiki guide for Kid Icarus: Uprising

Kid Icarus: Uprising, known in Japan as New Light Mythology: Mirror of Palutena (新・光神話 パルテナの鏡 Shin Hikari Shinwa Parutena no Kagami), is the third entry in the Kid Icarus series, released for the Nintendo 3DS in 2012. It was officially announced at E3 2010 as a new Kid Icarus that would come out for the then-upcoming Nintendo 3DS. It has taken a reimagined 3D design of Pit and the enemies of the original NES game, though Pit and Palutena themselves are based on their Super Smash Bros. Brawl appearances.

Project Sora was the developer of the game, with Masahiro Sakurai as the lead designer. The game was released on March 23, 2012 in North America and Europe. A digital download version of the game released in the Nintendo eShop on November 7, 2013 in North America, and then in April 9, 2014 in Europe.


Uprising is a direct sequel to the original NES game, and it takes place 25 years after it. The overall plot is split into two main story arcs (which are also split into mini-arcs), the first of which features the battle against Medusa and her returning minions, while the second chronicles the threat of Hades, Viridi, the Aurum and the Chaos Kin against the human race. In the first story arc, Medusa has been revived, and once again attempts to eradicate the mortals while seeking revenge from Pit and Palutena. In hearing this news, Palutena summons her most loyal servant, Pit, to stop Medusa and her Underworld Army, and restore peace to the realm once more. Along the way, Pit must battle all of the classic enemies and bosses that have returned from the original game. During the latter half of the story, Pit encounters many new characters and enemies in the greatly expanded Kid Icarus universe, including the true main antagonist, Hades. The story mode is also divided into 25 separate chapters that each represent a stage:

Gameplay modes

The game is a shoot'em-up based; the Air Battles play like a guided shooter and the Land Battles play like a third-person shooter. Pit retains the bow usage from his previous adventures, but his selection of weaponry has expanded greatly this time around. Uprising has three primary modes of play:

Single player (Solo Mode)

The single player mode is where the main game and its story will take place. Each chapter of the story is divided into three sections, usually in this order:

Air Battle

Pit using a special attack during air battle

In this game, Pit is granted the Power of Flight from Palutena, giving him the ability to fly for five minutes. The areas where this ability is used resemble a free-aiming flight mode as seen in popular rail-shooter games, where Pit can fly in one direction and aim in another, reminiscent of the Palace in the Sky in the original Kid Icarus. If Pit flies for longer than five minutes, which is only possible in a few chapters, Pit's wings will burn up and he will fall. Pit also has access to a special attack during this phase that defeats all on-screen enemies, which will build up over time and can be used when one of the two orbs on the touch screen are filled.

Land Battle

Land Battles allow Pit to roam freely, and he can alternate easily between melee and ranged combat depending on how close he is to an enemy. In this mode, Pit is also able to perform fast dodges and perform dash attacks. He can also utilize various Powers to defend himself or combat foes more effectively.

Boss Battle

For the bonus chapter: see Boss Battles

At the end of most chapters, Pit will face off with a boss character. These range from fighting massive monsters such as Twinbellows, to battling other major characters like Dark Lord Gaol, to encountering recurring villains such as Dark Pit. In some cases, such as with Hewdraw, boss fights can take place during air segments.

Fiend's Cauldron

Artwork of the Fiend's Cauldron

The Fiend's Cauldron is the game's unique and innovative difficulty setter. This particular item can be filled with Hearts, allowing players to increase the difficulty of the game by adding more enemies to attack as well as making them stronger. The Cauldron uses a scale of 0.0-9.0, with 2.0 considered as the standard. Players can increase or decrease the difficulty by 0.1 increments, making it a total of ninety-one difficulty levels. Increased levels also reward players with more hearts, weapons, and items. However, if a player were to die, the Cauldron will lower the settings by 1.0, but it will also increase the difficulty if the player performs well. There are also special areas during Land Battles that can be accessed through an Intensity Gate, but these are only open to those that have their difficulty set on a particular level. These Gates contain more powerful enemies and rarer treasures.

  • 0.0- Effortless
  • 1.0- Easy
  • 2.0- Standard
  • 3.0- Tougher
  • 4.0- Challenging
  • 5.0- Heatin' Up
  • 6.0- Extra Spicy
  • 7.0- Infernal
  • 8.0- White Hot
  • 9.0- Nothing Harder!

Multiplayer (Together Mode)

Together Mode features two modes: Light vs. Dark and Free-For-All. It features Pit, Dark Pit, and generic Fighters as playable characters. Light vs. Dark is a team death-match type of game, pitting Light Team and Dark Team against each other in battle. The player whose defeat depletes their team's health bar becomes an angel, and the first team to defeat the other team's angel wins. Free-For-All is a simple 6-way point match. This mode supports both local and online play.

Treasure Hunt

Treasure Hunt is the achievement system where players can unlock rewards for meeting certain objectives. There are three different panels with various challenges.

Idol Toss

Idol Toss is a feature similar to the Trophies in the Super Smash Bros. series. "Idols" are 3D models of characters, weapons, and items that can be viewed by the player. Each Idol also comes with a fun and informative description. During the Idol Toss, the player can launch an egg and shoot it, causing an Idol to hatch. Eggs can be obtained by playing the main story, or purchasing them by using the 3DS's Play Coins. Users can also gain more Idols by playing the AR Battle Mode by scanning other AR cards.

AR Battles

The game features an expansive AR Battle Mode, allowing players to see all characters, enemies, items, weapons, and locations using AR cards and the Nintendo 3DS's dual cameras. With this mode, battles can be waged with different Idols, each of which have their own stats and health bars.

SpotPass and StreetPass

For the StreetPass feature, players are able to send gems of weapons to other Kid Icarus: Uprising owners. These gems contain information about a specific weapon that other players can then spend hearts to convert into the original weapon. Players can also fuse weapon gems to create new weapons or destroy them to yield a small amount of hearts.

For the SpotPass feature, individuals could receive a new weapon gem each day. The Mii that gave these gems was named Palutena and had no statistics for the game. This service ended on March 31st, 2013.


Several items are found in Kid Icarus: Uprising, with some returning from previous Kid Icarus games. Hearts make a return as items dropped by downed monsters and can be found in some Treasure Boxes or secret chambers. Treasure Boxes also contain items such as Food, Grenades, and Drinks of the Gods. Usually when the player collects an item that can be thrown, such as Grenades or Cyclone, their targeting reticle will turn yellow and the item will be thrown upon the next press of the attack button, afterward the reticle will return to normal and the player can use their equipped weapon again.

List of items

An asterisk (*) signifies a new item in the series


Players can access a large arsenal of weapons, from which one can be chosen before each stage or match. Every weapon has close and long range attacks, as well as charged and rapid fire attacks. Individual weapons also have different values and bonuses. Players can find more powerful weapons by playing the single player mode on higher difficulties. In addition, each weapon has a special power attack that can clear the screen of most enemies, although they can only be used during flight. These attacks are represented by blue orbs at the bottom left of the touchscreen. The weapon categories are as follows:

  • Blade - A balanced, user-friendly weapon.
  • Staff - Fire shots that are ideal for sniping.
  • Claws - Move faster but with limited reach.
  • Bow - Fire guided arrows at high speed.
  • Palm - Fire homing shots from the palm of your hand.
  • Club - Fire powerful charged shots instead of continuous fire.
  • Cannon - Envelop enemies in explosive rounds.
  • Orbitars - Fire two separate shots designed for ranged attacks.
  • Arm - Improve melee performance but limit attack range.

Weapon Fusing

A fusion chart for the general class of a weapon.

Players can fuse two different weapons to form a new weapon in the Arms Altar. Gems can also be fused for the same purpose. Melee strength, ranged strength, and weapon modifiers, such as those that cause certain Status Ailments, are determined by the parent weapons, although not all will necessarily be preserved. The chart on the right is a simple reference to which types of weapons create what.


Powers are new abilities that Pit can utilize in battle. They can have different effects when used, ranging from unleashing powerful attacks to recovering Pit's health.


In addition to these weapons and powers, Pit will also be able to control armed vehicles in battle and for transportation. There are three vehicles that include the speedy Exo Tank, a futuristic robo-suit called the Cherubot, and a vehicle resembling a gyro-sphere called the Aether Ring.


Major Characters and Voice Cast

Characters English Voice Japanese Voice


Dark Pit

Antony Del Rio Minami Takayama
Palutena Ali Hillis Aya Hisakawa
Medusa Cree Summer Naomi Shindo
Magnus Fred Tatasciore Kenji Nomura
Dark Lord Gaol Kari Wahlgren (Credited as "Kari Whalgren") Junko Minagawa
Thanatos Danny Mann Eiji Ito
Pandora Nika Futterman Mariko Suzuki
Hewdraw Danny Mann Masaya Takatsuka
Hades S. Scott Bullock (Credited as "Scott Bullock") Hochu Otsuka
Viridi Hynden Walch Makiko Ohmoto
Phosphora Kari Wahlgren (Credited as "Kari Whalgren") Yuka Komatsu
Arlon Troy Baker Yasuhiko Tokuyama
Poseidon Fred Tatasciore Ryuzaburo Otomo
Pyrrhon Troy Baker Tetsu Inada
Chariot Master Alan Oppenheimer Hochu Otsuka
Dyntos Alan Oppenheimer Koji Yada


Kid Icarus: Uprising enemies and bosses
Underworld Army ArminBelunkaBlusterBoogityBrawny ClawsBumbledropClubberskullCollinCommylooseCoralCrawlerDaphneDark Lord GaolEggplant WizardErinusFire WyrmFort OinkFrozumGanewmedeGirinGloomerangGreat ReaperGuttlerGyrazerHadesHades's HeartHandoraHewdrawIgniotKeronKomaytoLeoxMagmooMedusaMega MusselMerenguyMikMinosMonoeyeMonolithMonomiknoseNettlerOctosOrnePandoraParamushPetribomberPhilsPlutonPorcuspineReaperRemoblamShelboShemumShildeenShootflyShripShulmSinistewSkuttlerSnongSnowmanSpecknoseSplinStackjawSyrenTempura WizardThanatosTortolunkTrailtailTwinbellowsUnderworld GatekeeperVakloomWave AnglerZik & ZakZureeZurret
Forces of Nature ArlonBadootBladerBoom StomperBumpety BombCacawCaptain FlareClobblerCragalancheDibble DopFlageForces of Nature GuardHugwormJitterthugLethiniumLunar Sanctum Control CenterLurchthornMahvaMeebaMegontaMudroneNutskiParashooterPew PewPipPhosphoraReset BombReset Bomb PodSkreetleToxiecapTrynamiteUrgleZert
Aurum Aurum BrainAurum CoreAurum CloneAurum GeneratorAurum PyrrhonBagloBiotaBlitClaxisDohzJyokKolmaNukleenPlixoQuoilRezdaRozSioTaklaxTribyteXonemeZaurumZrink
Palutena's Army CenturionCenturion KnightCenturion StrongarmJuggernautPalutenaPit's Body
Chaos Kin Chaos KinShadow Pit
Other Enemies Chariot MasterDark PitGreat Sacred TreasureMagnusMimicutiePhoenixPseudo-PalutenaSoufleeSoul-Eating MonsterSpace KrakenSpace PiratesTreasurefish


The idea of creating a game for the Nintendo 3DS occurred to Masahiro Sakurai as early as July 2008, shortly after the release of Super Smash Bros. Brawl, when the Nintendo President, Satoru Iwata, personally approached Sakurai about a brand new handheld in the works and desired him to make a game for it.[1] Iwata did not give Sakurai any direction as to what the genre or subject of the game should be.[2] Sakurai continued to work on this idea until it was approved by Nintendo on October 2008, though it was not a Kid Icarus game yet at this point. However, by working on the Super Smash Bros. games, Sakurai has noticed that many gamers were frustrated due to many beloved franchises being left dormant.[3] While working on the game, DS games under the Touch! Generations lineup (such as NintenDogs and Brain Age) were becoming popular with casual gamers. For the new 3DS title, Sakurai wanted something with more content to it for the hardcore gamers, along with prioritizing to use of 3D depth for the game's graphics. He decided on making the game's genre a third-person shooter, which was expanded to include on-rails air shooter segments as well. Thinking the 3DS would see a fair share of shooter titles, he wanted to make something with a different spin on the shooting genre, such as using the touch screen to control where the reticle is aiming. This was when the Kid Icarus series came to mind, and Sakurai thought the franchise would work well with his project. With Sakurai's familiarity with Nintendo's characters from Smash Bros., Iwata said Sakurai could use any of them as long as it fit the project's scope. Sakurai understood there was demand for a new Kid Icarus title, especially outside of Japan, and chose to make his game a new entry in that series, using the updated designs of Pit and Palutena from Super Smash Bros. Brawl as his starting point.[2] Another Nintendo series Sakurai considered was Star Fox, but he believed Kid Icarus was a better fit for the gameplay.[4] After pitching the idea of Pit starting off with a rails shooter who then transitions to a grounded third-person shooter, Nintendo approved a new Kid Icarus game. In 2009, Project Sora was formed and recruitment began in March of that year, intended specifically to make Kid Icarus: Uprising and then shut down when the game was finished.[2]

By starting with the on-rails air shooter segment, the player would have to learn how to dodge and control their attacks from the start without having to worry about moving around too much. Music was also timed to match the events happening in the air battles, as the duration of them was set, so developers knew how long they would be and when events would happen. For land battles, the small size of the 3DS screen would make it difficult to aim at smaller targets like in other shooter titles, so Pit's enemies were made larger to compensate. The movement with the Circle Pad to dash and dodge attacks was taken straight from the Super Smash Bros. series, and was included to make dodging while still targeting the enemy easier. Swiping and tapping on the touch screen was designed to make it easier to aim and also make more precise movements with the reticle. Sakurai notes it is a complex control scheme to learn, but it is one the works the best for the kind of game Kid Icarus: Uprising became. Before the game was ready to release, the Circle Pad Pro peripheral came out, which allowed a second Circle Pad to be attached to the 3DS system. While the game is compatible with it for left-handed movement, using it to offer alternative camera movement would have increased the processor load by about 5%, which was an issue when Kid Icarus: Uprising was already pushing the system to its limits.[2]

Aside from chapter opening and ending cutscenes, the developers did not want to break up gameplay with too much story, so the dialogue plays out as the player is fighting through the chapter. Because the original Kid Icarus game did not take itself seriously, Sakurai followed up on this and had the dialogue be filled with comedy and references. If the original game did take itself seriously, Sakurai would have followed that for Uprising as well. In regards to the game's scenario, Sakurai intended to outsource it and have someone else write it, but ended up writing it all himself. This was done in order to make it easier to line up the dialogue with the events that are occurring during air battles. The inclusion of different armies was done to add variety to the story and to make the origins of weapons more interesting. The weapons were created as if they were characters, each with their own traits.[2]

After months of work, Kid Icarus: Uprising along with the Nintendo 3DS was formally unveiled at E3 2010 on June 15, 2010, during Nintendo's press conference by Satoru Iwata. The announcement was met with delightful surprise by the press and fans, which has left Sakurai "touched", and was "absolutely, totally happy about it."[5] On January 2011, Nintendo held the Nintendo World 2011 event in Japan to allow the general public to try out their new system which also included a demo station for Kid Icarus: Uprising.[6] Sakurai himself also held a live presentation showcasing the game. At E3 2011, the multiplayer mode for Uprising was revealed, and another playable demo that allowed guests to try out the single player campaign or the newly shown multiplayer. The game was originally slated for a Holiday 2011 release, but a press release in December of that year revealed the game has been pushed back to March 2012. On January 20, 2012, Sakurai officially announced on his Twitter that Uprising has gone "gold"[7], and the game successfully released on its designated dates.

In a post-release interview, Sakurai has mentioned that 3 chapters had to be scrapped early in the development[8], possibly meaning the final product was intended to have more than 25 chapters. He also originally considered giving Pit a mascot-like character to help guide through his adventure before switching over to Palutena.[9] In a video on his YouTube channel talking about Kid Icarus: Uprising, Sakurai reveals the development behind the game had challenges. As Uprising started development before the Nintendo 3DS itself did, the development kit they had to work with was unstable. During planning stages, as Project Sora was comprised of employees from various places, there was a lot of arguing over what should and should not be in the game, even over small and obvious things. However, Sakurai learned from these experiences and followed them in future projects. Sakurai also says he feels it is a shame Uprising was limited to a smaller screen and would love to see it on a bigger screen, should a team be able to come together to make it happen.[2]


Kid Icarus: Uprising is one of the few first-party Nintendo games to feature full voice acting. According to Troy Lund, the actor that portrayed Pit in the E3 2010 trailer, the game was initially planned to be dubbed by local Seattle-based talent like most Nintendo games, however, the production was far larger than anticipated and Nintendo of America decided to move it to Los Angeles[10]. Voice over recording was ultimately done by Hollywood's Soundelux DMG[11], and later known as Formosa Interactive[12]. The voice cast was directed by Ginny McSwain[13], a veteran voice director and Emmy Award winner.

The original soundtrack was composed by well-known Japanese musicians such as Yasunori Mitsuda, Motoi Sakuraba, Yuzo Koshiro, Masafumi Takada, Noriyuki Iwadare, and Takahiro Nishi, along with Hirokazu "Hip" Tanaka who composed the original NES game's music and jingles.[14] Most of the music in this game is performed by a live orchestra or real instruments, with few tracks using MIDI. A selection of the game's music was released on the Japanese Club Nintendo[15], and eventually a full official three-disc soundtrack was released in Japan by Sleigh Bells.[16]


Kid Icarus: Uprising manga from V Jump. Illustrated by Satoshi Kinoshita.

Kid Icarus Float

At Nintendo World 2011, Sakurai announced the production of a 10 meter tall Kid Icarus Float depicting Pit and Palutena in northern Japan for the Aomori Nebuta Festival. It was paraded down the streets of Aomori on August 2011.


Japanese magazines, CoroCoro and V Jump, both released a short manga in their April 2012 issues[17][18]. The manga from CoroCoro was based on Chapter 1, and V Jump's was based on Chapter 3.


A mini-series of Kid Icarus 3D Anime shorts aired on Nintendo Video to promote the game's release:


On April 27, 2013, Japanese figure-making companies, Good Smile Company and Max Factory, released figmas of Pit and Dark Pit.

Reception and sales

Upon release, Kid Icarus: Uprising received positive reviews from both critics and fans. It is also one of the few games to receive a perfect 40/40 from the Japanese gaming magazine, Famitsu.[19] The gameplay, the characters, the script, the voice acting, the visuals, the mulitplayer, and the music have all been praised. However, a common complaint from many gamers was the rather cumbersome control scheme. Nonetheless, the game sold 1.18 million copies worldwide as of March 31, 2013[20].


In a poll conducted by IGN, 44% of players were "extremely impressed", and another 40% were "pretty impressed" with the game[29]. In the final issue of Nintendo Power, the magazine declared Kid Icarus: Uprising as the 64th greatest Nintendo game of all time in a list of 285 Nintendo games[30].


Despite critical and commercial success, Masahiro Sakurai has stated he has no interest in creating a sequel for Uprising[31][32].

In regards to a possible Nintendo Switch port, Sakurai does not believe such feat would be possible[33].




  • Kid Icarus: Uprising contains numerous references and shout-outs to other Nintendo games.
  • Kid Icarus: Uprising was the first 3DS game to be revealed to the public during E3 2010.
  • The box art for Kid Icarus: Uprising was changed for its English release so that it features Pit with an angry expression, while the Japanese version has him smiling. This type of change has similarly been made for various games in the Kirby series, which was also created by Masahiro Sakurai. Sakurai himself noticed this, and seems to be slightly amused by it.[34]
  • The 3DS home screen jingle for Kid Icarus Uprising is the same as 3D Classics: Kid Icarus.
  • Kid Icarus: Uprising was the first 3DS game to have a reversible box art in all regions.
  • According to Sakurai, the sole reason behind the B rating for the game in Japan is due to the sequence where Hewdraw's head gets cut off[35].

External links

Kid Icarus series
Main Series Kid IcarusKid Icarus: Of Myths and MonstersKid Icarus: Uprising
Remakes 3D Classics: Kid Icarus
Related Games Super Smash Bros. BrawlSuper Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii USuper Smash Bros. Ultimate
Related Media Captain N: The Game MasterKid Icarus 3D Anime
Key People Toru OsawaYoshio SakamotoMasahiro SakuraiHirokazu TanakaGunpei Yokoi


  1. Time: Masahiro Sakurai Makes Kid Icarus Fly Again on the Nintendo 3DS
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Masahiro Sakurai on Creating Games - Kid Icarus: Uprising (Game Concepts)
  3. YouTube: Iwata Asks (E3 2010) - Sakurai About Kid Icarus: Uprising
  4. Siliconera: Sakurai Also Considered Making a Star Fox Game For 3DS
  5. Nintendo Power Vol. 258 (Page 16)
  6. Nintendo World 2011 Official Website (Japanese)
  7. Twitter: Masahiro Sakurai (January 20, 2012)
  8. Cubed3: Sakurai-san Talks Kid Icarus: Uprising
  9. Iwata Asks: Kid Icarus: Uprising - After the Medusa Battle (Part 6)
  10. Behind the Voice Actors: Troy Lund - Comments
  11. Kid Icarus: Uprising Credits
  12. Formosa Interactive: Credits - Video Games
  13. Ginny McSwain: Online Resume
  14. Wayô Records: Kid Icarus: Uprising Official Soundtrack
  15. Club Nintendo Japan: Kid Icarus: Uprising Music Selection (Japanese)
  16. SLEIGH BELLS: Kid Icarus: Uprising Official Soundtrack (Japanese)
  17. 新・光神話 パルテナの鏡 [@3DS_Palutena]. "【おしらせ:コロコロコミック】 月刊コロコロコミック4月号(3月15日頃発売)には『新・パルテナ』のマンガが掲載されます。詳しくはこちら。". Twitter, 14 March, 2012,
  18. 新・光神話 パルテナの鏡 [@3DS_Palutena]. "【おしらせ:Vジャンプ】 Vジャンプ5月特大号(3月21日発売)には『新・パルテナ』のマンガ(後編)が掲載されています。(Vジャンプ WEB:". Twitter, 20 March, 2012,
  20. Nintendo Japan: IR Information - 3DS Sales Data
  27. Nintendo Force Magazine Issue #2: A Celebration of Sequels - March/April 2013
  31. "I don't expect there to be a sequel to Kid Icarus: Uprising. But in another 25 years or so, I would love to see someone else make another Kid Icarus game." - Nintendo Power, vol. 279, page 22
  34. Twitter: Masahiro Sakurai (January 13, 2012)
  35. SourceGaming: CERO and Palutena's Censorship