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As time goes on and game developers continue to try to push the limits of what’s possible, games are becoming much more impressive. From immersive sound design to beautiful graphics and more, there’s a lot of work that goes into modern games. That all being said, older titles weren’t primitive by any means. An often overlooked feature of most GameCube games was surround sound support. However, not all games had it; Kirby Air Ride in particular opted out to cut down on loading time of all things.



The information comes from Masahiro Sakurai during a livestream in honor of Hamster’s Arcade Archives’ 10th anniversary. While he is well-known now for directing the Super Smash Bros. series, before that Sakurai worked on the Kirby series, notably being the original creator of Kirby himself. During the stream, Sakurai mentions that Kirby Air Ride was planned to have surround sound support, but that he decided against it in the end to save an extra second or two of loading time from the Dolby Surround logo appearing when launching the game.

“I feel very sorry for making the user wait. If you take 1 second from each user, that means you’ll be taking 10,000 seconds from 10,000 people. The more this repeats over the years, the more time you will cause players to lose.”

While a second or two may seem insignificant, when you think about how many times that second will be lost, it adds up. Whether or not this was worth it depends on who you ask, there’s no right answer either way. Regardless, Kirby Air Ride is a hidden gem among the GameCube’s library. Hopefully someday it comes to Nintendo Switch Online, or even better, receives a full-on port or remaster for those who haven’t gotten to experience it before!

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Written by Abbie Maxwell

Lifelong Nintendo fangirl, Abbie holds a special place in her heart for video games. She has always strived to provide tips and tricks to make the experiences of those who share her passions that much better.