|“||When a big enemy is defeated, eat him!”|
|— Intro description • Kirby's Adventure|
Mid-bosses (also known as mini-bosses or medium-rank bosses) are enemy characters that are stronger than regular enemies but not as strong as bosses. They are typically fought mid-way through levels and bar the player's progress further. Usually, during a fight with a mid-boss, the camera locks in place and Kirby cannot leave the battlefield until he has won the fight. Due to the 3D nature of Kirby and the Forgotten Land, mid-boss battles take place in circular or rectangular arenas with a blue barrier around them upon entering. When the mid-boss is defeated, the barrier will disappear allowing the player to progress.
When a mid-boss is defeated, it typically lies on the ground KO'd for a few seconds before exploding; in Kirby Super Star Ultra, the KO'd mid-boss has 26 HP. It is only during this time that Kirby can use his inhale on them to receive their Copy Ability as normally they are strong enough to resist his suction.
Most mid-bosses, with the exception being the Meta-Knights, are able to resist Kirby's inhale and have a health meter that must be depleted before they are defeated. They also have at least one attack that can be inhaled and spit back at them (this is the only way to beat them without a Copy Ability).
In some games, Mid-Boss Towers can be accessed, where many mid-bosses are faced consecutively. In most Boss Endurance modes since Kirby Super Star, mid-bosses can also be faced in a consecutive pack known as Mid-Boss All Stars.
Copy Abilities from mid-bosses
When a mid-boss is defeated, it normally lies on the ground KO'd for a few seconds before exploding; exceptions to this are mid-bosses in games and sub-games without Copy Abilities, Kracko Jr., all mid-bosses in Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards, Sphere Doomers, and Super Bonkers. During this time, Kirby can inhale them and gain their ability. Nearly all mid-bosses have Copy Abilities and some Copy Abilities can only be collected from mid-bosses (e.g. Hammer, Suplex, and Ghost).
Mid-boss is a shortening of "middle-rank boss," referring to how the enemy isn't quite the rank of a normal boss, but cannot be exploited like a regular enemy. The "mid" in its name could also be interpreted in that the mid-boss generally appears in the middle of stages/levels instead of being at the end, where a normal boss would usually be.
|“||Some of the enemies are just too nasty for me to swallow. See if you can find other ways to beat these guys!
A medium-rank boss can't be swallowed up.”
|— There are Some Tough Guys Out There That Even I Can't Swallow! • Kirby's Dream Land Instruction Booklet|