|“||These fast-moving creatures run back and forth in various areas of different worlds, looking to run Kirby down. Jump and fly when you see one coming—you can't outrun it.”|
|— Description • Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards Official Strategy Guide (Prima)|
Nruffs are rampant, large, almond-shaped, brown boar-like animals and recurring enemies in the Kirby series. Nruff initially appeared as an individual character and boss in Kirby's Dream Land 2, but the name has since come to also refer to a type of common enemy, appearing mainly in either verdant forests or arid, rocky places. Nruff is best known for stubbornly charging ahead, no matter what stands in its way. In Kirby's Dream Land 3, Kirby's Return to Dream Land, and Kirby Star Allies, Waddle Dees can be seen riding on a Nruff's back. In Kirby: Right Back at Ya!, Nruff lives deep in Whispy's forest within Acore's roots along with her smaller counterpart Nelly.
In all games Nruffs appears in, they grant no ability when swallowed.
In Kirby's Dream Land 2, Nruff is a large boar with spiky, dark brown fur. She has a round pink snout, pointy little ears, as well as slanted eyes and shiny black hooves. Her tusks are sharp and silver-gray. Nruff is also very large and dwarfs both Kirby and Nelly. This incarnation of Nruff also appeared in Kirby: Right Back at Ya!, alongside Nelly.
The common enemy which debuted in Kirby's Dream Land 3, merges Nruff's appearance with that of Nelly. This newer design consists of the same facial features and overarching appearance, however white stripes were added to their backs, their fur is lighter, and they're smaller in stature. They also lack the tusks that both Nruff and Nelly had previously.
These Nruffs more resemble adolescent wild boars, which have stripes on their sides that disappear as they age.
Nruff appears as the boss of the Big Forest, and is accompanied by many Nellys. The arena consists of two rope-bridges and two large trees flanking both sides of it. Nruff comes out of one of six holes in the trees and charges from one side of the arena to the other, and will occasionally toss bombs at Kirby. Kirby simply has to inhale the Nellys and spit them back at Nruff to defeat her. After losing around half of her health, Nruff's attacks become more erratic and unpredictable, and she begins to jump off the bridges in an attempt to confuse Kirby.
Nruff is no longer a boss, being replaced by Pon and Con, whom Kirby fights about the same way, aside from needing to defeat the both of them, and an occasional bomb falling from the sky during the fight.
Instead, Nruff is now a common enemy that sports a slightly revamped design. Nruffs simply charge wildly ahead whenever they encounter Kirby, just as their boss counterpart from the previous game. In addition to appearing alone, Nruffs can also be seen with a Waddle Dee riding on their back in a similar fashion to a Poppy Bros. Jr. riding on an apple or Grizzo. If this is the case, Kirby must dispose of them both separately in order to eliminate their threat completely. If a Nruff hits a wall with a Waddle Dee riding it, it will be bucked off and the two will be separated.
This common enemy incarnation of Nruff remains consistent in the following game, Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards, with the previous Boss incarnation only reappearing in the anime and official artwork.
A sticker of Nruff is obtainable in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, featuring their Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards artwork. Usable only by representatives of the Kirby series, this sticker increases Body Attack by 5.
Nruff once again appears as a common enemy in Kirby's Return to Dream Land. They appear in some stages of Raisin Ruins, sometimes with a Waddle Dee on their back.
Nruff and Nelly appear as one collectible keychain in Kirby: Triple Deluxe. The pair use their sprites from Kirby's Dream Land 2.
Nruff first appears in Stage 1 of Level 3. They remain still until he sees Kirby, at which point they paw the ground and sprint toward him. If one is not defeated or blocked by a wall, it charges off the platform. Nruff is a large enemy and, like most enemies in the game, has scaled-up versions. All of these can be Inhaled for a Blaster Bullet.
Nruff reappears in Kirby Star Allies as an enemy. Sometimes a Waddle Dee can be seen on their backs.
|“||These enemies attack as a tag team. Be wary of their combo moves!”|
|— Official European Kirby's Return to Dream Land website|
- The official Kirby Twitter's illustration for Mother's Day 2019 suggest that Nruff's incarnation from Kirby's Dream Land 2 is the mother of the Nellys she appears with.
- Nruff, Pitch Mama, Big Birdee, Dyna Blade, Hot Wings, and Mamanti are the only known mothers to appear in the Kirby video game series.