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Boss Endurance, also commonly referred to as Boss Rush, appears in many Kirby games. It is a sub-game where Kirby must battle all the bosses from the game, usually with little to no recovery items. In some games this mode must first be unlocked (usually by completing story mode) before the player is able to attempt it.

In general, the bosses are fought in the same order they were in story mode. However in some cases they might be fought in a random order.

In the more current games, the Boss Endurance sub-games usually have a specific title screen for it that displays each of the game's bosses.

Although Kirby's Dream Land didn't have an official "Boss Endurance"-type of sub-game, the first section of the final level, Mt. Dedede, features mini-stages that include the first four bosses fought in a similar style to the Boss Rush segments from Mega Man games. They can be defeated in any order before battling King Dedede, who is fought last. This concept is likely to have been what inspired Boss Endurance.

The Arena

KPR Maxim Tomato.png Main article: The Arena

The Arena is a sub-game similar in concept to boss-fighting endurance sub-games seen throughout most of the series, but vastly updated. It is essentially the Boss Endurance sub-game in Kirby Super Star, Kirby Super Star Ultra, Kirby's Return to Dream Land, Kirby: Triple Deluxe, and Kirby: Planet Robobot.

Before Kirby can fight any bosses, he can choose an ability from a room abundant in Copy Essences. Generally, Kirby is allowed to take a Helper or teammate with him. There is also a Warp Star in the room. When Kirby hops on it, he will go begin the battle royale. Between bosses, Kirby can heal with a limited number of Maxim Tomatoes and take a different ability from two randomly-generated Copy Essences.


Kirby's Adventure and Kirby: Nightmare in Dream Land

In Kirby's Adventure, this mode is called V.S. Boss! Kirby must go through a series of bosses in the order he fought in the Story Mode. Upon defeating each boss, Kirby must collect each of the Star Rod pieces to move on to the next battle, just like in story mode (this step is omitted in the GBA remake). Kirby also does not have any access to recovery items. The bosses, in order, include:

  1. Whispy Woods
  2. Paint Roller
  3. Mr. Shine & Mr. Bright
  4. Kracko
  5. Heavy Mole
  6. Meta Knight
  7. King Dedede
  8. Nightmare (orb form)
  9. Nightmare (wizard form)

This mode is unlocked by beating the game once. In 3D Classics: Kirby's Adventure, Kirby's Vitality regenerates after the Heavy Mole fight.

Kirby's Dream Land 2

The Boss Endurance challenge of Kirby's Dream Land 2 is more or less unchanged from its use in Kirby's Adventure; it is unlocked after 100% completion of the main game, and pits Kirby against the bosses in the order he fought them in the game, with no breaks or chance for recovery between battles.

  1. Whispy Woods
  2. Nruff
  3. Sweet Stuff
  4. Ice Dragon
  5. Mr. Shine & Mr. Bright
  6. Kracko
  7. King Dedede
  8. Dark Matter (first form)
  9. Dark Matter (true form)

Kirby's Pinball Land

A form of Boss Endurance is activated after entering a code on the title screen. The player is able to select which Pinball Land to go to, but will instead jump straight to that Pinball Land's boss. Just like the main game, it is only possible to lose a life on the final boss. Also like the main game, the first three bosses can be fought in any order before fighting the final boss:

Kirby's Dream Land 3

In Kirby's Dream Land 3

This mode is known as "Boss Butch". Again, Kirby gets to fight all of the bosses of the game in a consecutive order:

  1. Whispy Woods
  2. Acro
  3. Pon and Con
  4. Ado (paintings of Ice Dragon, Sweet Stuff, Mr. Shine & Mr. Bright, and Kracko; after defeating Kracko, Ado charges at Kirby, but is defeated in one hit)
  5. King Dedede
  6. Dark Matter
  7. Zero

Boss Butch's keychain in Kirby: Triple Deluxe.

Note that in this Boss Endurance, Kirby cannot call Gooey.

The backgrounds of each boss fight are notably different, introducing a new aesthetic component for the player to explore:

  • The Whispy Woods battle takes place in autumn instead of summer.
  • Acro is now fought outdoors, maybe under a sandstone cliff, instead of underground.
  • Pon and Con are fought in a volcanic area instead of Sand Canyon.
  • Adeleine's sweet, sunny arena is changed to dull and stormy.
  • Instead of a completely cloudy sky, the Dedede battle takes place near sunset with flower petals being blown by the wind.
  • Hyper Zone's normal blue void with black blobs is changed to a yellow void with red and blue blobs (starting in Kirby's Dream Collection Special Edition, the red and blue blobs were changed to yellow and green blobs).

The boss themselves fight in exactly the same way, regardless of the graphic changes.

If the player is defeated during any of the bosses, the game over screen will consist of a new artwork of the respective boss battle in which they lost.

Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards

The screen shown if Kirby wins without taking damage

Kirby must fight through all of the bosses in the game in order:

  1. Whispy Woods
  2. Pix
  3. Acro
  4. Magman
  5. HR-H/HR-E
  6. Miracle Matter

Kirby cannot copy any abilities from any enemies or projectiles. The only ability he is able to use is Ribbon + Crystal against 0².

The option "Try Again" is replaced with "Accept Defeat" rather than the "Tough it Out" in story mode.

Kirby & The Amazing Mirror

In Kirby & The Amazing Mirror

This version of Boss Endurance is similar to The Arena in Kirby Super Star, except that doorways are used as transitions to the next enemy instead of Warp Stars. Kirby has the choice of all Copy Abilities at first (except Master, UFO, Magic, Mini, Cook and Crash). Between fights, two random abilities are available, as well as 4 single-use Maxim Tomatoes. The majority of the fights are random:

After the above bosses have all been defeated, the following four bosses are fought afterwards in order:

  1. Dark Meta Knight
  2. Dark Mind (first form)
  3. Dark Mind (giant eyeball)
  4. Dark Mind (small eyeball)

Kirby: Squeak Squad

In Kirby: Squeak Squad.

Level Map

The player can attempt this sub-game once all Boss Battle Badges are obtained. Kirby starts the sub-game inside the base of tower filled with ability bubbles (including Triple Star). Once again, Kirby fights bosses in a linear fashion in the same order he did in the story. Before Kirby fights King Dedede, he will get a single Maxim Tomato bubble. On the road to Dark Nebula's room, he will obtain cherries, meat, and another Maxim Tomato by playing through the whole last level instead of just the boss.

The order Kirby fights the bosses goes as follows:

  1. King Dedede
  2. Mrs. Moley
  3. Mecha Kracko
  4. Yadogaine
  5. Bohboh
  6. Daroach
  7. Meta Knight
  8. Dark Daroach and Dark Nebula

Kirby Mass Attack

KPR Maxim Tomato.png Main article: Survival Rush

Kirby Star Allies

KPR Maxim Tomato.png Main article: The Ultimate Choice

Kirby and the Forgotten Land

KPR Maxim Tomato.png Main article: Colosseum


Boss Butch's title screen in the Japanese version of Kirby's Dream Land 3

  • Out of all the sub-games in the Nintendo DS games, Boss Endurance in Kirby: Squeak Squad and the goal games in Kirby: Squeak Squad and Kirby Super Star Ultra are the only ones that can't be controlled with the stylus, other than tapping on items and powers to use them in the former.
  • In Kirby's Dream Land, Mt. Dedede has a mandatory boss endurance, where Kirby must rematch against all four previous bosses before King Dedede himself. This may be the early concept of Boss Endurance.
  • In the Japanese version of Kirby's Dream Land 3, Boss Butch's title screen has the phrase "NINTENDO 16" written across the top. This is a Nintendo 64 reference applied to the Super Famicom, as the Super Famicom is a 16-bit console.

The screen that appears after holding down X+L+R

  • If the button combination X+L+R is held after beating Zero in Boss Butch after taking no damage, a special "PERFECT!" screen will show up, instead of the credits.
    • Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards’ Boss Endurance also has a special reward for taking no damage throughout the entire thing: an image of Kirby using a Power Combo of all of the game's bosses.
  • While the in-game menu descriptions for single-player versions of the other sub-games in Kirby: Nightmare in Dream Land read "Fun for one!," the menu description for single-player Boss Endurance reads "A hard and lonely road...". In addition, unlike the other sub-games, there is no box reading "1" above the "M" box to the left of the name of the sub-game, indicating that Boss Endurance in this game was intended to be played in multiplayer.
  • In Kirby & The Amazing Mirror the only way to tell which Mid-bosses the player will be fighting next is that the background is red for Group 1, purple for Group 2, and green for Group 3.

See Also