Kid Icarus (NES)

Game Profile

In 1986, a new Nintendo hero was born: Pit; otherwise known as Kid Icarus. Armed with a magical bow, the angelic warrior is the only hope for Angel Land after it falls into the hands of the Goddess of Darkness, Medusa.

An adventure in the Metroid mould, Kid Icarus blends platforming with action elements as you shoot arrows, collect items and explore dungeons to seek out three sacred treasures. Only then will you have the power to take on Medusa!

After Kid Icarus, Pit appeared only once more, on the Game Boy in 1992, but he’s set to make a comeback as a new combatant in Super Smash Bros. Brawl – coming soon to Wii!

Game Review

Wii U eShop Review

Europe PAL Version

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

A demonic angel

The popularity of Pit, even before his triumphant return in Kid Icarus: Uprising, was focused around nostalgia for his first two appearances on NES and Game Boy, with the home console original setting the tone with catchy music, quirky mythological...

Game Review

Virtual Console Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Damien McFerran

Is Pit a hit?

Kid Icarus is one of those games that makes you think 'they sure don't make them like they used to'. Graphically it's very basic - this is from 1986 after all - but the charm simply shines through regardless. This is a game from an era where developers...

Game Screenshots

Related News

News: Nintendo Confirms Week Two Details for Super Smashing eShop Sale

Nintendo Confirms Week Two Details for Super Smashing eShop Sale

Featured characters like Link! Mega Man! Captain Falcon! Pit! More!

Last week Nintendo of America caused a fair amount of buzz when it launched the first week of its Super Smashing eShop sale, which is a series of promotions over a four week period to celebrate the fighters in the upcoming Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS. The initial batch has...

News: Kid Icarus AR Cards & Toad Folders With Bookmarks Return To Club Nintendo Australia

Kid Icarus AR Cards & Toad Folders With Bookmarks Return To Club Nintendo Australia

Get them while you can

Australians have had a lucky run with Club Nintendo catalogue items this year. By no means would it take a statistician to calculate, but on average there has been at least one item released on the local club per month. For the month of April, Nintendo Australia continues its new-found Club Nintendo trend with the return of...

Nintendo Download: 25th July (North America)

25th July (North America)

Kid Icarus, chain blasting, Picross puzzling and more

It's that time again, North America, and after releasing a long awaited cult classic last week, the Nintendo Download Update is fairly reserved this week. There are some goodies to enjoy, nevertheless, so let's get to the details. Wii U Virtual Console: Kid Icarus (Nintendo, $4.99) — Not...

Game Trailers

Subscribe to Nintendo Life on YouTube

User Comments (76)



JNoodles said:

This is (almost) as good as they got back in the day! Kid Icarus is still awesome after all of these years.



Manaman said:

I'll probably buy this even though I imported the Famicom Mini version. It's that good!



dualj said:

I love this game. It is really hard, but with enough preserverance you can make it through.



Hansen said:

Just completed it for the first time in years. Great game, thouh I never really understood why people say it's so hard. I'd say it's one of the easier classics from the NES-era.



Dakk said:

On my first couple of tries, I was shocked at how difficult it seemed. It was extremely frustrating to get really far on a level, miss a jump, and have to start over. It gets easier to play after a bit though. My only disappointment now is having to deal passwords in case the Wii loses my place.



Wolf said:

Don't worry about passwords, just look them up on gamefaqs.com or something. I really love this game and I remember when I was a kid I could only get to the 2nd stage. Once I got to the zelda-like dungeon that you get a map and you can explore it I freaked out ZOMG! lol I was so happy... spending hours getting my health back and being turned into an eggplant over and over didn't really amuse me tho :[



diablos79 said:

I remember really loving this when it first came out and i was worried that it might have lost some of its magic over time but playing it for the first time in over 15 years i see its lost none of its charm. As good as i remember it, if not better cos of the retro cool. Cant wait for megaman. (anyone remember when that series was good?)



SergeEXE said:

Ah, Kid Icarus. Such a classic, and a pioneer for the Password system at that, along with Metroid. Non-Mario platformers didn't really get much better than this. Totally worth the 500 points. (And diablos, Megaman was only good for Megaman 2. STILL my favorite NES game.)

__Famous Roy


Famous Roy said:

Had this for a few days, really fallen in love with it! To be fair, it is very hard, especially when compared to games today, but it has that 'one more go' factor in spades. Megaman 2 would literally melt my eyes, got it on my nes but you know, wanna have it on me wii!



deggs said:

I'm so happy to finally play this game. I had the Kid Icarus sequel for game boy and that game is loads of fun.

It's too bad Nintendo abandoned this franchise. It was basically the brainchild of Gumpei Yoko (one of the greatest game designers of his time and the main force behind the first 2 metroid games and the designs for the original Gameboy). Once he parted ways with Nintendo to make the wonderswan for Bandai, this series kinda fell wayside but there are rumours of a third game in the series for the Wii at some point in time.



nephew77 said:

Kid Icarus was my second game, but I enjoy it for more than nostalgic reasons. I've beaten it at least six times now. The music, difficulty curve, and level design keep me coming back. This game epitomizes the best of the NES adventure game genre. This is not far off from Metroid, but they got the mythology all wrong. Icarus is called Pit and tries to kill Medusa, who is supposed to be killed by Perseus. The Plutos are only remotely related to Hades, the god of the the realm that bears his name and also precious metals. Nonetheless, I cannot recommend this enough. Just don't get turned into an eggplant. 5/5.



ktwice said:

I remember this game being really hard when I was a kid. I VCed it and nothing has changed. I have not gotten any better.

This is one of those games that makes you yell at the tv. You get so close to the end of a climbing level...and you fall. 10 minutes of work gone... Maybe I suk.

I think the most aggravating part of the game is when your in a room with the pots of free stuff and you shoot the one that has the mini-reaper in it and that damn music comes on. That little f-er is now haunting my dreams.

Fantastic in all, because I want more. Played the first Zelda-esq dungeon in the game (level 1-4) for an hour yesterday and didnt get through it.



Adrian said:

They're bringing pit back on the wii in the new super smash brothers, so perhaps they've also got a new 3D platformer in the works too? I wouldn't mind mimicing bow and arrow actions with a wiimote.



SKTTR said:

Kid Icarus is at first a strange mix of an platforming/ action/ adventure/ rpg. It also is a shooter in the last level.

If you practice a bit and get into the controls, so that you don't fall off the screen, you'll have a good time. The game gets easier as you progress.

Only the first three or four levels are hard, because you couldn't level up your energy enough. If you keep killing monsters you will get more bonus points at the end of a stage and you are more likely to level up. That's the secret and if you manage that, this game will be much more easier but no doubt still be a challenge.

I'm not that much of an hardcore gamer, but I beat this, so I would say, put time into it, and write down the passwords for each level, so you can replay a level to get more points and get stronger sooner and you will beat it too! Yeah, it's a very good game! Even today 4 Stars.

__Pit 42


Pit 42 said:

This is, without a doubt, one of the greatest NES titles Nintendo has to offer. I'd recommend it to anyone who loves Mario, Zelda, and Metroid and that want a game that blends elements from a three games into one. It's not an easy game, though, so look out for VERY hard challenges along the way.



Yoshi175 said:

Damn whoever said metroid was harder than this was wrong
So annoying if you fall off the screen, you know the ground is just a tiny bit off but still you die, It's damn annoying



dj2794 said:

how do you use items with the wii remote? thats been bugging me for a while, i cant use hammers or anything, it sucks



Drake said:

Hammers can only be used in fortress levels. Press minus to switch between them and your weapon. Note that all they do is free Centurions!

__Mii be you


Mii be you said:

This game good. but it's hard. But remember this, The game doesn't hate you.
Challenge rating:8.0
Fun rating:7.0
Graphics rating:6.0
SFX/Music rating:7.0
Gameplay rating:8.5
Overall rating:4 stars



jg233 said:

The game is not that hard! All you have to do is shooy every single enemy. You'll get upgrades quickly and the game is very easy then. After 1-4 the game is very easy.

It is very fun if you can master it.



darthmix said:

You know, honestly, there's a reason this game didn't "make it" as a key Nintendo franchise the way Metroid and Zelda did: it isn't nearly as good. There are little kernels of greatness; the three "dungeon" stages at the end of each world have hints of Zelda-esque design, for instance. And the final shooter-type stage, when Pit is at full power, is cool. But that's too little too late; the bulk of the platforming levels never really transcend their early NES feel. They're not just hard; they're sparse, and you feel you just aren't doing very much as you slog through them. The boss battles are made artificially hard - also, tedious - simply by forcing you to land a ridiculous number of hits before they'll die. the game isn't bad, I guess, but unlike Metroid (its sister title) this game just never rises above its 8-bit roots.



Arcade said:

This is a good game, but there are some really bad design choices. For example, there are these hard-to-dodge bandits that will steal your hard-earned powerups and force you to buy them back from a black market later on. The eggplant wizards can also make you lose your mind as you're left to wander helplessly trying to find a hospital. This game is also notorious for starting out hard and getting easier and easier right up to the final boss (which is something of a disappointment, though still fun). Some of the rooms are left empty, and others contain insanely hard challenges. But if you're willing to deal with some frustrating moments, you'll enjoy yourself.



Mad_Bomber said:

I could never get past level 1 when I rented this as a kid.

Recent Wii VC version passwords helped me out once I downloaded this to try again.

Fun game. Sadly never got a sequel even though lesser games did.
Not the best game but had some great potential.

Hopefully Pit will kick some butt in Smash Bros Brawl and we'll see a rebirth of this unique franchise.



Mario1 said:

this game is a bit of a chore unless you use the password for all the power ups.



Ho11oWxxMaN said:

Kid Icarus is a good game. Its nothing really spectacular, but overall its alot of fun to play. The downfall of the game is its difficulty. Ever heard of the term "nintendo-hard"? I believe that term was made because of this game. Each level is just a huge onslaught of enemies, in which you can take very few hits and do not have that great of a weapon. I am not going to lie, me and my buddies used to play this alot, because once you get used to it and practice you can get quite good. But if you are having trouble with games like Ninja Gaiden, Kid Icarus may not be for you.

3/5 stars is my rating. If it were a bit less of a chore to play through it would get a higher score. I know I am definitely excited for Pit's arrival in SSBB.



Garlyle said:

This is one of those games that I can sense a great amount of potential in... and I suspect it gets much better, but the difficulty will take some getting used to, and there's nothing really driving me to attempt it, either. I suppose I'll come back to it later, play it, and get addicted, but until then...




I have a strong feeling, this lost gem of a game will see a 3d rebirth on the wii. Starting with Pit being in brawl.



Nigel said:

Yeah, I haven't even made it past the first level. I have to give it three stars. I suppose if I was twelve years old and only had Kid Icarus to play I'd give it the time it needs to get good at, but after dying six times I just play something else!



Pwnage said:

i never played it before, but it is definetly going to be my next download



Manicfatty said:

Geebus. Now I feel old. This game is kicking my anus. I know my cousin and I either beat this or were close. Now I suck. Grrr. Still an interesting and fun game...when I'm not chasing after the controller I just tossed!



Jon2 said:

A great game. Unfortunately it doesn't get the attention it deserves.



Capt_K said:

Great game, i remember it being sooooo hard back in the day. Just recently downloaded it. Much easier than i remembered, however those *&$£ eggplants are very annoying!!!!
4/5 for me!



GameGod3008 said:

i heard about this after reading a Metroid article and decided to take a chance with Kid Icarus. Fortunately for me, it paid off. This is a great game and if you like Metroid, definetly get. i'm just hoping now that the Factor 5 rumours of a new kid Icarus game will pay off.



Marvel_Maniac said:

This is actually better (in my opinion) than the original Metroid. It actually has maps of levels! I bought this two days ago and just finished it. It certainly does start off hard, but keep at it! It gets better and easier as you level up. That's right! There is an experience system in a game this old! Who'da thought?



Lurch said:

A nice adventure/plattformer with an awesome soundtrack is worth 500 points, no doubt about this. but it is so friggin' HARRRRRD! that's why i give it 3 out of 5 points



stinssd said:

This game reminds me of the awful Kid Icarus character on Captain N: The Game Master. "I can fly-icus! I just need wings-icus! I ate some cheerios for breakfast-icus!"

This game is worth the money.



solosnake said:

I had never played this before. I have to say it is one of the best titles on the NES. Id go so far to say its #2 behind mario 3. Download this now! unless you dont like hard games, because this one will kick your ass.



agent_lime said:

I just downloaded this and its seriously better then super mario bros. It took me an hour 13 just to get to the third level, dying many, many times, (good thing theres unlimited lives), but the challenge adds to the greatness. It never feels unfair, and you will always want to try again. Its very addictive that way. You also get such a feeling of accomplishment when you do finish the level. I cant wait to play the rest!
5 stars.
oh by the way ninja gaiden 2 sucks.



ToonLink said:

A great game. Mostly is good because of Nostalgia - Pit is in SSBB, nice to go back to the old days. It is quite hard in places. As for saving the game, the wii does that for you.. 4/5



Smileface said:

My first game for VC.
Well, I mean its GOING to be
I love Kid Icarus
The song keeps me up forever^^



Smileface said:

Oh, a quick question
When you die, it gives you a code
Does that mean you have to write down a giant code every time you play or can you just press continue and go from where you left off?



jcasetnl said:

The opening title theme of Kid Icarus was truly amazing for its time and still catchy today. Overall, I think it was overshadowed by Legend of Zelda and Metroid back in the day, but no hardcore nintendo addict passed this one up.

A note to people giving this one a try: the very toughest part of this game is the beginning since you start out with a teeny tiny little life bar. As soon as you get that first life bar upgrade the game is much more manageable. I think this happens at the end of level 1-4.

I noticed the initial difficulty when I played it again for the first time in twenty years and kept thinking to myself, I don't remember it being this hard! Then, the dust and cobwebs covering some long-dormant synapses in some backwater area of my head were brushed aside and vague memories of my childhood friend telling me all this started coming back. I finally had that "Ohhhhh that's right" moment when I got the life bar upgrade. So stick with it and you'll soon be rewarded with one of the best old school platformers.



megacody said:

This is a hard game, but I still love it. You should probably only get this game if your hardcore, and have lots of patience.



Stu said:

Just bought this today as I was browsing the shop...very impressed.

It's certainly challenging, but I like games that offer unforgiving gameplay mechanics.

I also thought it would serve as a nice precursor to the Kid Icarus content in Brawl. Yes, I'm a (patient/foolish depending on your view) European who didn't import.



Tweek said:

Wow, I LOVE this game! It's incredibly hard at the beginning, which made many would-be fans of the game turn away from it, but it gets easier and more fun as the game progresses.

Plus, who doesn't love the fact that they put Pit in Brawl? Freakin' awesome.



Ricardo91 said:

this was one of the first VC games I ever downloaded, along w/ Battle Lode Runner and Super Mario World. It's a pretty good game, but it's crazy hard, especially at the beginning. But your puny little health bar increases as the game goes on, so it gets better. If it weren't for some useful tips NP gave me, I might've never gotten through it. It's also not the best-designed game out there, what with the empty rooms and some weirdly placed locations and items (a training ground at the end of a long, gruelling stage? RIDICULOUS!) and why do I need to buy a torch and pencil to make the map worth something? and WHY DID THEY REMOVE THE FREAKIN' POWER-UP PASSWORDS BUT LEAVE IN THE THE DAMN FLICKER AND SLOWDOWN?

but still, a good buy at 500 points, if a tad underwhelming, and I love the music (especially when it was remixed in Brawl!)

btw if any of you guys can find it, get KI: Of Myths and Monsters for the Game Boy. It's easier and much better-designed than the original, though the music isn't as good. KI fanboys might try to tell you otherwise, but they're wrong I tell you, WRONG! the only thing I don't like though is that in that game, you can only use power-ups like the long arrow if your health is at a certain level. oh well...



Ry-Type said:

Loved this game back in the day and its still great to play even now (I don't care if thats the nostalgia talking!) Enjoyed the gameboy sequel just as much too- Hopefully Kid Icarus will finally make a comeback on the Wii.



Kingston said:

Just bought this game, and I have to say, this game is awesome. It took me about 20 tries to beat the first level! I haven't tried much of the second, but I have already died 4 times. Luckily, if you have the patience, this is an awesome game.



Ricardo91 said:


I heard on Gamefaqs that they actually ARE making anew KI game for Wii. It's called Kid Icarus III: The End of Worlds, or something like that. I don't know if it's true or not, but one can hope.



couthedman92 said:

I played this at a friend's house, and I was more than impressed. Oh, sure it was hard, (curse you eggplant wizard!) but I am already seriously considering buying this game.



Is this game really that hard? Maybe it's because I played it constantly as a kid, but on Virtual Console, I beat it without dying the first time I played. >_>

I don't really like what they've been doing with Pit too much. I liked the way he looked in the artwork for the Gameboy game, and the SSBB look and voice were just not what I expected. Not too bad, though. Just not what I wanted.

I've been hearing these "Adult Icarus" rumors and stuff. I certainly hope Nintendo is paying no mind, because it would be one of the stupidest things that could happen, seriously.

...and if there's no Eggplant Curse, it's just some game with an angel.



ZBomber said:

Really fun game, but pretty difficult. Atleast it has a password feature so you don't have to start at the very beginning everytime you die (Imagine that!) 4/5



zombiekillr said:

ok.. is it just me... or is this game tremendously difficult? like i cant get passed the 3rd level hard.... please tell me this isn't just me sucking... but other from that this really is a fun game(until you die for the 100th time)



Corbs said:

I went to the store to purchase Metroid but they're were sold out of it everywhere so I ended up being impatient and buying Kid Icarus instead. Turned out to be quite a great game and one I still love to this day. Or course Metroid isn't too shabby either.



Divock said:

I can say two things about this game. One, that it is hard as hell (which is kind of funny because you start out in the underworld/hell), and Two, it's addicting. When you play it the controls are normally pretty responsive and only slightly annoying, but it's part of the charm. The graphics actually fit the style, not too impressive for the NES, but if it was better, it'd be awkward. It was the first I got on the VC and I do NOT regret it. It's fun. When you die, sometimes it's because of something stupid and you're like "ARGH! MUST TRY AGAIN!" But for some reason, it doesn't make you slam your controller. Heck, I think it's because its so hard that it's so fun, you play it longer.



Big_A2 said:

Grrr... why doesn't this support Wii Component Cable Interlace Made? This is one of Nintendo biggest first party games of the early NES era! They fixed bloody DK Jr Math, but not this?



MrLopez said:

This game is great!! BUT HARD!!! It's even harder than castlevania games!!



psyduck said:

After 2 hours of strugling with the 3rd stage (1-3) I have finaly been able to beat it and the first boss that come after it. Now I'm playing the side scrolling stages for the first time and simply love it.

For those of you who are stuck at the first 3 levels my advice is: replay the game from the very begining, kill as many enemies as possible (including those inside the rooms) collecting all hearts. When you get enough points at the end of the stage 2 you should receive an extra live meter. Also, you should have enough hearts to buy a bottle that fills your live meter. With that the game becomes much easier.



psyduck said:

I have finally managed to beat this game. The eggplant wizards gave me hell in the last castle but the boss was way to easy. I wish there were more flying stages and with more variation than this. After you finish the game you can play it over from the beginning but with all powerups intact. Overall a very nice little game that I recommend to all hardcore players.



Cally said:

This was probably the first or second game I downloaded onto the VC. It's a classic? Okay . . . I'm determined to stick with it and wring as much fun out of this sucker that everybody else gets. It may take awhile (though I haven't yet persisted past level 3 since I got it).

My first impressions were, the platforming is murder; some of the weirdest mid-air physics ever. Really touchy and unforgiving. "Welcome to early-NES," right?

BTW, the GB Kid Icarus is AWESOME!



The_Ink_Pit_Ox said:

I tried the demo, but it feels too much like Kirby. They should create a new one using Pit's current form. That'd be sweet.



Banana_Jane said:

I wish they had made more games on the Metroid engine.
The graphics are just incredibly beautiful.



HolyBlade said:

You CAN beat this game, but it's not worth the trouble. Kid Icarus is just too "old school" for it's own good.

There's no fun in wasting 10 minutes climbing a screen, just to lose all progress because you messed up a jump. I hate all the grinding that is required in order to survive the first few levels. And those annoying Eggplant Wizards with (seemingly) random attack patterns? Screw it.

Nostalgia purposes aside, only get this if you are a masochist.



mushroomer said:

パルテナの鏡 <----- that is the japanese title for the original Kid Icarus.
Translates "The Mirror of Parthenon"
interesting how the change of just the name makes a game more child like or serious...

Leave A Comment

Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...