Much has been made of Kirby’s different look in the west compared to how he is portrayed in Japan. Kirby: Triple Deluxe director Shinya Kumazaki explained that the Japanese love the cute look of Kirby, while the US prefers a more serious looking Kirby.
“For the Japanese versions we are, at [Kirby series developer] HAL, involved in everything throughout development, including the package design. The most powerful image of Kirby is that cute image, we think that’s the one that appeals to the widest audience. While it does start cute, we know there is a serious side to Kirby as well, and throughout the gameplay we see more and more of that, and the games themselves have quite a bit of depth. That being said, we recognise that Kirby’s cuteness is his biggest draw in [the Japanese] market. What we have heard is that strong, tough Kirby that’s really battling hard is a more appealing sign of Kirby, so that’s what we feature in the US.”