Kirby's Dream Land (1992)
Console of origin
King Dedede is Kirby's arch-enemy and the primary antagonist in Nintendo and HAL Labs' long-running Kirby video game series, appearing in every game except the game Kirby & The Amazing Mirror, making him the most recurring major character of the series besides Kirby and Waddle Dee. He is the greedy self-proclaimed king of Dream Land, which is located on the quaint planet Pop Star.
Due to an ambiguous description of the geography of Pop Star, it is never made entirely clear how much of the planet King Dedede assumes leadership of, though he seems to have castles and fortresses all across the planet. Even so, he seems to perform no administrative functions, and for the most part, the planet seems to ignore any edicts that are issued by him.
King Dedede resembles a large penguin-like creature dressed in red royal finery, with his personal emblem (either a picture of himself performing the peace sign, or, in the anime and later games, just the peace sign alone) embossed on the back of his robe, as well as most of the items or weaponry he owns and/or endorses. King Dedede himself is rather portly, is blue-skinned and has a yellow mouth (which has been depicted as more of a beak). He is consistently seen with his round red cap, which has a yellow or golden rim and a white ball at the top (a crown in Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards and the anime pilot). He has blue flipper-like hands, though they are usually covered by a pair of yellow mittens. He has a tan piece of clothing, but these are not shown in some games, revealing a blue belly. In addition, he has a red and yellow zigzag-patterned girdle-like band stretched across his waist. His trademark weapon is a large star-studded hammer which he can swing around with the greatest of ease. He is able to inhale objects and spit them out in a manner similar to Kirby. According to Super Smash Bros. Melee, he apparently underwent a series of rigorous training programs to learn and master the use of inhaled air to fly like Kirby. This occurred after the events of Kirby's Dream Land.
Kirby's Dream LandEdit
King Dedede first appeared in Kirby's Dream Land as the main antagonist, where he and several thieves acting on his part steal all of the food in Dream Land and, in either an attempt to crush morale or simply to cause needless mischief, he steals the inhabitants' treasured Sparkling Stars and gives them to his underlings. Appearing as the final boss of the game, his actions are reversed by Kirby upon his defeat, with a finishing blow that sends him flying through the ceiling of his castle.
Kirby's Adventure and Kirby: Nightmare in Dream LandEdit
In Kirby's Adventure and its remake, Dedede has broken up the fabled Star Rod and removed it from the Fountain of Dreams, giving him full control over the fountain. This leaves the people of Dream Land unable to dream, and Kirby is dispatched with the task of recovering all the pieces and punishing the king for his selfish actions. In a key plot revelation, defeating King Dedede makes it apparent that he was actually trying to protect Dream Land from the Nightmare that took residence in the fountain, and even goes so far as to spit out Kirby into outer space so Kirby can defeat them. This is one of the few instances where he is seen as helping Kirby as opposed to hindering him. Nonetheless, this started a popular trend in the series where King Dedede would serve as the apparent final boss, but collecting all the pieces of the game's key item would reveal the true instigator of Dream Land's problems.
Kirby's Dream Land 2Edit
In what is seen as one of the darker points of the series, Dark Matter takes control over King Dedede's body in Kirby's Dream Land 2, plotting to rule Dream Land after separating the Rainbow Islands by destroying the Rainbow Bridges. After battling Dedede's associates across the seven separated islands, Kirby made his way to King Dedede's chamber in Dark Castle's looming tower. Under Dark Matter's control, Dedede was trapped in an unnatural sleep throughout his confrontation with Kirby, but otherwise fought exactly as he did in Kirby's Dream Land. He could also power himself up in fits of rage, making his attacks more explosive and giving them wider range, even being able to toss his hammer at Kirby, which would explode on contact.
Although Kirby could face his rival at Dark Castle to his heart's content, only after collecting the seven Rainbow Drops could he truly save the day. After defeating Dedede with the seven drops in hand, Kirby was rewarded the Rainbow Sword as Dark Matter emerged from the king's limp body, and the two dueled high in space. As shown in the game's ending, Dedede finally awoke and recovered after the battle, and was even glad for Kirby when Dark Matter was expelled from the land.
Kirby Super Star and Kirby Super Star UltraEdit
In Spring Breeze, the first sub-game of Kirby Super Star, King Dedede plays the same role he did in Kirby's Dream Land. He is also fought in The Arena and can be raced in Gourmet Race, in which he challenges Kirby to eat more food than him while running a marathon against him. He is also in the sub-game Samurai Kirby where he is the penultimate enemy (the last being Meta Knight).
In Kirby Super Star Ultra, Dedede has all the same roles that he did in the first game, but here his role was greatly expanded when he was given a new villain role in another sub-game; Revenge of the King. Here he plots Kirby's doom by once again stealing four of the Sparkling Stars to lure him into some old enemies that have gotten stronger. After Kirby fights his way through to the end of Dedede's castle, Dedede forces Kirby to take up a hammer for their final battle (though Kirby can opt not to use it by not picking it up and waiting). Dedede then reveals himself, wearing a mask and wielding a new, mechanized hammer, intending on settling the score with Kirby once and for all. The fight style here is similar to the Meta Knight battles where the similar weapon is offered, and their mask breaks after they are defeated. He does not offer the hammer in The True Arena.
During the fight against him as Masked Dedede, Dedede is armed with the "brand-new Dedede Hammer" and is capable of a much larger moveset, in addition to a lack of his signature flinching when taking damage (though only during attacks that utilize the Dedede Hammer in some way). Four of his new attacks include firing miniature rockets from his hammer, using it as a flamethrower, performing a spinning attack similar to Hammer Kirby's, and making the hammer electrified in order to send out a wave of electricity along the floor after slamming it down. He still uses his trademark jump, but three times in a row this time. He also had apparently carefully thought up his revenge plot, to the point where he puts an electric cage around the arena, restricting Kirby's flight. Upon defeat, King Dedede is sent flying in a similar fashion to when he lost in Spring Breeze. He is seen in the ending credits dejectedly walking through a desert under a setting sun, in the company of his Waddle Dees. The desert area is similar to the one Kirby and Wheelie goes through at the end of Revenge of Meta Knight.
Kirby's Dream Land 3Edit
King Dedede fought Kirby again in Kirby's Dream Land 3, this time as the boss of Iceberg.
Soon after meeting up with Dedede at the top of his castle, it quickly became apparent that he was taken over by a Dark Matter-like force once more. When the puppet king confronted Kirby (and Gooey) this time, he displayed not only his typical fighting skills, but some new and disturbing ones as well. At first he used his normal abilities, but once the finishing blow was landed, he became surrounded by an eerie mass of dark energy and began floating in the air, gaining an entirely new health bar. In this form, what appears to be Dark Matter finally shows itself, peeking its eye out of Dedede's body to shoot blobs of dark energy that would home in on Kirby and attempt to ram into him. Perhaps the most disturbing attack was when the king's stomach would split open into a large snarling mouth filled with sharp teeth and then would promptly chase after the player.
Defeating King Dedede and getting all of Iceberg's Heart Stars expelled the fiendish entity from his body. Further collecting all thirty of them revealed the way to the Hyper Zone, the cloud which housing Dark Matter and Zero, the source of all the strange behavior. King Dedede, alongside Kirby's animal friends, will bear witness to Kirby taking off to fight and defeat Dark Matter once and for all.
In Kirby's Avalanche, Dedede makes an appearance twice: The first time is at the ending of Easy mode, where he announces the Dream Fountain cup of the Avalanche tournament. The second appearance is as the final boss, where he challenges his rival, Kirby, for the championship.
Kirby 64: The Crystal ShardsEdit
In Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards, King Dedede is fought very early on in the game and is possessed by one of the Dark Matter once again. King Dedede, while surveying his kingdom, discovers a Crystal Shard and attempts to inspect it. Kirby attempts to retrieve it for Ribbon, but King Dedede stubbornly refuses and continues to inspect it. However, both are knocked back by a Dark Matter, and ends up possessed by the Dark Matter when the latter discovers that it holds the Crystal Shard. Although significantly weaker, his attacks are similar to the ones from the previous game; using his hammer and spitting out small Dark Matter-like blobs. After the Dark Matter is driven out, he gives his Crystal Shard (albeit bitterly). While the gang is departing, Waddle Dee tries to convince him to come along with them, which he clearly detests in doing - though he grudgingly follows and joins their group.
In some levels where Kirby wouldn't normally do much and probably wouldn't travel far, King Dedede comes and offers Kirby a lift. When controlling Dedede, the player will find that he can't do multiple jumps, but he can swing a hammer, which can break objects that Kirby couldn't, such as large walls or boulders. He can also charge his hammer, but it won't do any extra damage.
If the player loses all six units of life while controlling King Dedede, he falls unconscious with Kirby unharmed—he tries to shake Dedede awake and pulls off the white crown on Dedede's cap in the process. Despite the fact that Kirby is unharmed, the player still loses a life and has to start the room over again. Upon the completion of a Dedede portion, Kirby will direct Dedede as to where to go, to which Dedede will then grab Kirby and hurl him to his destination, waving goodbye as he does so.
When infiltrating Ripple Castle, Dedede will arrive to clear away a roadblock caused by cave-in.
In the false ending, Dedede is seen crying when departing from Ripple Star.
In the true ending, Dedede will accompany the party to Dark Star to destroy the Dark Matter threat once and for all. Dedede will then launch Kirby into the air by slamming a pedestal so he could fight the core of Dark Star, 0². Afterwards, he along with the rest of the party are awarded with medals made from the Crystal for their heroism by the Fairy Queen.
Kirby: Canvas CurseEdit
In Kirby: Canvas Curse, a fake version of King Dedede appears in the game Cart Run as the opponent the player plays against. The king also appears as one of the drawings in Paint Panic.
Once the player defeats Drawcia using Waddle Dee, the player can unlock the real King Dedede in the Medal Swap section of the game. He is the biggest and heaviest unlockable character in the game. If the player taps him with the stylus, he will use his hammer, which is useful for breaking certain blocks, wooden pieces and taking down enemies. King Dedede has seven vitality points, and costs 20 Medals to unlock.
Kirby: Squeak SquadEdit
King Dedede makes a first in the Kirby series by standing as the first boss in Kirby: Squeak Squad. Kirby suspects that Dedede had stolen his afternoon snack and confronts him. Dedede's attacks are the same as in other games, but he gains a new one: Whenever he screeches, a Parasol Waddle Dee will float down from the top of the screen. After his defeat, the Squeaks (who were really behind the robbery) attack and take his treasure chest thinking it contains an ultimate power and begin to run off with it, but the furious King Dedede quickly grabs Kirby and tosses him at them, knocking all of them into a pit that led to a cavern in Nature Notch. King Dedede is never seen in the game again.
Kirby's Epic YarnEdit
King Dedede serves as the boss of Snow Land in Kirby's Epic Yarn. However, he first appears back in his castle in Dream Land, bossing his Waddle Dees around. Noticing that one of them looks strange, Dedede is attacked by Yin-Yarn and his impostor Waddle Dees. Yin-Yarn then sucks Dedede into his magical sock, which transports him to Patch Land.
When starting the fight against Dedede, he spots Kirby, but just before he can act, a strange puppeteer-device flies at him and connects him to four strings that control him from above. His attacks range from jumping up and then slamming into the ground with his hammer, jumping up and down making shock waves and Gordos appear, and belly sliding across the slick icy floor. After the four strings have been plucked, the puppeteer-device is destroyed and Dedede is freed from its control. Kirby and Prince Fluff then obtain the sixth strand piece of Magic Yarn.
King Dedede appears once more in the game, following Kirby, Prince Fluff and Meta Knight back home to the yarn version of Dream Land, where his castle has been converted into a floating stronghold. There are also some King Dedede collectibles to be found such as a mini version of Castle Dedede and one of his robes. A doll of him can be bought from Chaise Woole in Quilty Square.
Kirby Mass AttackEdit
Dedede is fought as the third boss in Kirby Mass Attack. He starts out in a hot air balloon (which resembles his head) and tosses time bombs onto the Kirbys. These bombs must be bounced back at Dedede, so that they explode in his face when the clock strikes "0". After several hits, Dedede falls to the ground, where the Kirbys must tackle him to perform damage. After a few times of this, the balloon will float away and Dedede will resort to using stomp and hammer attacks. At this point the Kirbys' only chance to damage him is to get behind him when he uses his hammer attack and tackle him from behind. He is the only boss that can be accessed with only one Kirby (with the exception of the Boss Rush on Necro Nebula), and there is a checklist reward if the player can defeat him using only a single Kirby.
When defeated, a black/purple smoke is released from his body, implying that he may have once again been possessed, although it is never really explained.
King Dedede also appears in the Kirby Brawlball sub-game, where he will send Kirby to one of the boss levels when Kirby goes into his mouth. He also appears three times in the Kirby Quest RPG sub-game; as the boss of the first chapter, driving HR-D3 as the boss of the second chapter, and as a regular enemy in the final chapter.
Unused sprites of King Dedede exist in the coding of the game. These sprites show him as a playable character in Strato Patrol EOS. Rather than spitting a constant stream of stars like Kirby, he would have thrown a constant stream of hammers.
In the credits, if Kirby keeps fishing, it is possible to fish out Dedede. However, he appears to be knocked out.
Kirby's Return to Dream LandEdit
King Dedede is a playable character in Kirby's Return to Dream Land for the Wii. Unlike in Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards where he was reluctant about joining forces with Kirby, this time he is eager and willing right from the start. Of the four playable characters, Dedede is treated as the group's comic relief.
Dedede has almost the same exact moveset as Hammer Kirby, but with two notable changes. The first being that he is unable to perform the Giant Swing move (that is, Kirby's midair move in which he spins the hammer around his body); instead Dedede just swings the hammer in front of him when in midair, not much differently than from his normal hammer attack.
The other difference is that Dedede is able to perform the Hammer Throw attack as often as he wishes. Normally Kirby would sacrifice his ability when he uses this last-ditch attack, but Dedede does not, basically giving him infinite projectile attacks.
Another interesting detail is that since Dedede inflates himself to fly like Kirby does, he can also use the Air Pellet as an attack.
Also notable is that the Hammer Twirl attack, a downward hammer spinning attack which both Hammer Kirby and Dedede can use, was originally introduced as one of Dedede's attacks in Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
Kirby: Triple DeluxeEdit
Dedede's castle is lifted high above the ground into a kingdom known as Floarald one night by a beanstalk called the Dreamstalk. The next morning, a spider-like creature named Daranza enters his castle, dispatches his Waddle Dee guards, and kidnaps him. Daranza ascends the World Tree with Dedede in tow as Kirby follows behind, trying to save Dedede. King Dedede is a 'damsel in distress' character for the bulk of the game until the end, where he becomes the penultimate boss of the sixth world. Daranza takes possession of him by using silk strings like a puppet, and magically materializes a certain mask and mechanized hammer, forcing him to fight Kirby as Masked Dedede.Masked Dedede's attacks are similar to those in KSSU, but with minor differences. The most noticeable difference is that Dedede's inhale is stronger, and he spits Kirby at the screen. When he is defeated, Masked Dedede's hammer will break and his mask will crack after the first round, but Daranza will strengthen him, causing him to roar angrily as his robes turn purple and he steals one of the large decorative axes, taking revenge on Kirby. He can spin his axe around like he did with his hammer, and he will be dizzy for a few seconds. He can also walk across the whole screen while swinging his axe everywhere. After Kirby defeats him, Daranza tries to awaken him but fails. Daranza then summons Queen Sectonia, who confronts Kirby. King Dedede wakes up with his will returned as Kirby defeats Sectonia, only to watch as Sectonia combines herself with the World Tree. The World Tree's vines cover Pop Star as Dedede and Kirby panic, but several of Floarald inhabitants (which Kirby previously rescued) bring the two a cannon-like device (controlled by tilting the 3DS) that Dedede uses to fire Kirby into Sectonia's vines, weakening them, and creating an opening to Sectonia herself. Dedede fires Kirby through the opening and he confronts her for the second time, defeating her, though a vine grabs Kirby and captures him. Daranza then lifts Dedede into the sky, where the former throws the latter at Kirby. Dedede smacks Kirby free with his hammer, and throws him at Daranza, who throws a Hypernova Bean at Kirby, transforming him into Hypernova Kirby. Kirby then defeats Sectonia for the third and final time, causing her vines to disintegrate and Dedede and Kirby to fall from the sky. Daranza catches Dedede while Floarald's inhabitants catch Kirby, and they all admire Floarald as flower petals fall from the sky.
The player can unlock King Dedede as a playable character in the main mode by completing the game once. Dedede's moveset is similar to Kirby's Hammer ability and his moveset in Kirby's Return to Dream Land, though his neutral attack sends out a shock wave along the ground in front of him, and his charge attack sends out a red beam. Dedede can still float and send out puffs of air. During Dedede's playthrough, some enemies are larger and presumably more durable, and bosses and mid-bosses have been palette swapped from their original forms and have "DX" at the end of their names, likely signifying they're more powerful. In the main mode, Dedede is the sixth level's boss, but while playing with Dedede himself, a dark version of Dedede named Black Dedede is fought. The final boss is Dark Meta Knight.
One of the sub-games, Dedede's Drum Dash, allows the player to control Dedede as he bounces on drums while class Kirby tunes play in the background. Collecting coins and clapping cymbals together awards points and there are four difficulty levels.
Although Dedede is a primary antagonist, he is not necessarily evil. Several of his deeds are performed when under possession by some other entity - three times by the Dark Matter, once by Yin-Yarn, and once by Daranza. Whenever he is the villain of his own volition in the games, however, it is usually due to selfish mischief, such as stealing food or trying to prove himself better than Kirby. Despite his greed and selfishness, he sometimes has pure intentions behind his actions. His role as the antagonist of Kirby's Adventure was ultimately to protect Dream Land from Nightmare by hiding the Star Rod. He has also willingly helped Kirby in Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards, Kirby's Return to Dream Land, and the Subspace Emissary story of Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Dedede is sometimes seen to be on friendly terms with Kirby, especially in the more recent games. He shows no apprehension towards helping Kirby in Kirby's Return to Dream Land and is visibly very happy to see him towards the end of the Subspace Emissary, even going as far as to run up to hug him. Despite this, he is still the main antagonist (or the tertiary but more active antagonist compared to Customer Service and Nightmare, who both prove to be a much bigger threat) in the anime, although it is revealed near the end that he enjoys their one sided rivalry to an extent and that he does not actually wish for Kirby to die, which eliminates his role as a villain at the anime's conclusion.
Although King Dedede's authority and influence over Dream Land is seldom questioned in the games, events and descriptions in several spinoffs and references including Kirby: Right Back at Ya!, and Dedede's trophy description and a Codec conversation with Colonel Campbell in Super Smash Bros. Brawl suggests that it is highly subjective depending on context. King Dedede himself takes it for granted, and his army of Waddle Dees serve him and staff Castle Dedede. Meanwhile, other creatures happily go about their business with or without him. In Kirby: Right Back at Ya!, when his people choose to defy him whenever he oversteps his bounds, he has little to no enforcement of his authority to stop them, short of ordering monsters from Nightmare Enterprises and having it backfire on Escargoon and himself.