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Featherweight

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Featherweight logo Featherweight is a racing game developed and published by Pixelburst Gaming for the Nintendo Wii U. It is considered a spiritual successor to Kirby Air Ride, borrowing its basic control scheme and tweaking the balance of the gameplay slightly. The game is set in Auster, a warm and tropical fantasy world where Humans live in harmony with large land-based birds called Mephoru and racing has become a popular pastime, but is endangered when a malevolent being threatens to reawaken the dark god Raven.

Gameplay

The majority of gameplay takes place on racetracks, with players taking control of a team consisting of a Rider and a Mephoru and moving across the track to complete specific goals. In the midst of most races, players should keep track of two specific stats:

  • Health is the more important of the two stats, especially in Battle Rules races. Whenever a character takes a hit, they will lose Health, with the exact amount being determined by Power and Vitality. When a racer loses health, they either lose speed for three seconds and risk falling behind, lose a shield, or are pulled out of the race completely when out of shields.
  • Mana is only slightly less important by Health, but can be more useful by far if used properly. In most races, each character has access to four spells. These spells are used to seize places from foes or to defend your current spot in the rankings, and can make or break a strategy. When depleted, Mana will slowly regenerate. The speed is dependent on various factors in races.

Players have the ability to Charge - one of the gameplay mechanics borrowed from Kirby Air Ride. Charging causes the player to lose speed, but will grant them a short but large boost in speed when released. Players with this speed boost can ram into rivals to deal damage. Charging can also be used to drift past tighter corners. Players also have access to two types of movement - Running and Flying. Running is generally faster, and allows the player to cast spells, while Flying is somewhat slower and can only be used when they have the speed boost from a Charge, but grants access to a variety of shortcuts.

Grand Prix mode

The main gameplay mode for multiplayer, though it can be played with one player and multiple NPCs. Grand Prix mode is split into multiple smaller gamemodes, all competitive in nature and all perfect for having fun with friends. And, of course, all gamemodes under Grand Prix are capable of online multiplayer.

Feather Cup

One of the Grand Prix modes. This gameplay mode is an eight-player race to the finish, and combat follows Race Rules - that is, characters cannot be knocked out of the race by losing all their health, but instead receive a speed penalty for three seconds before regaining all their health.

Racer’s Cup

One of the Grand Prix modes. This gameplay mode is an eight-player race to the finish where combat more closely resembles Mario Kart - by collecting Tomes or defeating enemies on the racetrack, players can pick up predetermined spells which (though requiring no prep time or Mana to use) are used up when casted. Health is not an issue either - hitting a player with a spell will cause that player to stop momentarily, and how long they’re stopped for is determined by their Vitality.

Fighter’s Cup

One of the Grand Prix modes. This gameplay mode is an eight-player battle royale taking place on a looping track, where the goal is to be the last player or team of players standing. Combat in this gamemode follows Battle Rules - if you lose all your health, you lose a shield, which marks your lives. Lose three shields, and you’re out! Game over! Knowing when to use spells is ideal in this gamemode.

Rider’s Quest mode

The game’s story mode. Rider’s Quest mode can be played by up to two players, and takes them through the tale of how a small group of Riders and Mephoru managed to stop the rise of Raven, a malevolent deity. Missions in this mode are varied, with some as simple as beating enemies in a race or defeating them all, and others slightly more complex like completing a race without defeating enemies or casting spells, and some as strange as managing to get defeated by a specific enemy. You will also face bosses!

Characters

Players are able to select a team prior to racing. Each team consists of one Rider and their Mephoru ally, and each team is defined by their own unique spells and weapons.

Character Stats Description Style Unlockable?
Latti-Featherweight

Featherweights
Latti and Aegis
Vitality:
★★★★☆

Accel:
★★★★☆

Charge:
★★☆☆☆

Flight:
★★★☆☆

Power:
★★★☆☆

Weight:
★★☆☆☆
A pair of adoptive siblings whose knack for bringing out the best in each other has brought them to the Feather Cup Grand Prix. They are the second-youngest racer, but doubtless the most gifted, and are also Phoenix’s chosen hero, as represented by their ownership of the Phoenix Lance. Latti wields the legendary Phoenix Lance - a powerful halberd forged from the ash of the immortal god from which it receives its name. Though somewhat slow, the Phoenix Lance's length makes it ideal for pushing foes back even from farther away. It also excels at attacks whilst charging, and barely slows Latti down when drawn.
Her preset magic is primarily focused on gaining the advantage through tactical movement - Side Dash and Haste to improve her maneuverability, Trailblazer to take advantage of the maneuverability and dish out damage, and Fireball as a basic attack.
No
Blanc Featherweight

Cloud Riders
Blanc and Basilisk
Vitality:
★★★☆☆

Accel:
★★★★☆

Charge:
★★★★☆

Flight:
★☆☆☆☆

Power:
★★★★☆

Weight:
★★☆☆☆
A veteran team of the Feather Cup Grand Prix that never seems to gain spotlight for the traits that they would prefer to show the world. Blanc styles himself as noble and just hero, but is honestly a total jerk with heroic delusions in reality. Basilisk also has really, really weird eyebrows... Blanc is one of the few characters who doesn’t use a weapon to fight at close-range, instead preferring melee combat. When necessary, however, he uses the Razor Discs - circular metal shuriken that can be thrown at more distant enemies. He has to wait for them to return before they can be thrown again, but gains the boon in speed from not having his weapons drawn until they return.
His preset magic is primarily focused around close-range, with Ice Shards and Flash Shot to deal with nearby foes in various ways and Satellite Cutter to defend himself, and is one of the two characters whose presets come with Copy Cat.
No
Aerora Featherweight

Winds of Aether
Aerora and Vanilla
Vitality:
★☆☆☆☆

Accel:
★★★★☆

Charge:
★★★★☆

Flight:
★★★★★

Power:
★★☆☆☆

Weight:
★★☆☆☆
The youngest racer in the Feather Cup Grand Prix, and one of the higher-ranking racers in her previous race. Though not the best racer, her light weight and innate magical potency makes her an aerial menace when she has as full stock of Ether, but physically weak in melee range. Aerora wields a staff with lower range and power than other weapons, as well as offering a slightly slower deceleration rate than other weapons. It isn’t recommended for use except as a last-resort when out of Mana.
Her preset magic a varied assortment that can fit nearly any situation rather well. Her main offensive power comes from Wind Disc, with Satellite Cutter and Side Dash aiding her whenever defense and evasion are necessary. She also has Heal Aura to restore her health - a feat that can save her life in a pinch.
No
Torendin Featherweight

Iron Battalion
Torendin and Falco
Vitality:
★★★★★

Accel:
★☆☆☆☆

Charge:
★★☆☆☆

Flight:
★★☆☆☆

Power:
★★★★☆

Weight:
★★★★☆
A former soldier, fleet commander, and bounty hunter and the mephoru who saved his life from certain doom long ago. Since then, Tonendin has dedicated his life to building a new reputation for himself and Falco by racing in the Feather Cup Grand Prix, of which he is the oldest racer. Tonendin wields a massive mallet, which slows Falco down even when put away, its so large. It makes for crushing offense at close range, though it can be somewhat tricky to time when the player is being rushed by rivals.
To make up for his slow speed, his preset magic comes with Haste. He also has Ice Shard and Thin Ice, in order to give enemies a tough time by altering the terrain or hitting them with close-range magic, and can defend himself using Orbital Shields.
No
Raja Featherweight

Lily Blossom
Raja and Adom
Vitality:
★★★★☆

Accel:
★★★☆☆

Charge:
★★☆☆☆

Flight:
★★☆☆☆

Power:
★★★★☆

Weight:
★★★☆☆
A veteran riding team that, despite their incredible skill, has never actually participated in the Feather Cup Grand Prix. They are both loyal to Raven, but see Aegis, Latti, and the rest less as opposition and more as mere rivals. They're also everything Latti wants to be - skilled and carefree, but also stoic and cool-headed. TBA No
Thana Featherweight

Raven's Omen
Thana and Gadget
Vitality:
★★☆☆☆

Accel:
★★★★★

Charge:
★★★★★

Flight:
★★☆☆☆

Power:
★★☆☆☆

Weight:
★★☆☆☆
One of the few humans, and one of the even fewer mephoru, loyal to Raven. Thana and Gadget are clearly up to something shady in this particular Feather Cup Grand Prix, as the two have no clear motive to participate and have not been known to be good enough to match those that they would be up against. TBA No
Zoey Featherweight

Lifestream
Zoey and Stitches
Vitality:
★★☆☆☆

Accel:
★★★★★

Charge:
★★★★☆

Flight:
★★★★☆

Power:
★★☆☆☆

Weight:
★☆☆☆☆
The subjects to a Raven loyalist's experiment in which their biologies were exposed to pure mana, rendering them mute, magically potent, physically unstable, and dependent on a constant intake of mana to survive. They're actually quite the friendly pair when you get to know them... TBA Yes
Phoenix-Featherweight

Phoenix
Goddess of Freedom*
Vitality:
★★★★☆

Accel:
★★★★★

Charge:
★★★★★

Flight:
★★★★☆

Power:
★★★★☆

Weight:
★★☆☆☆
The beloved bird goddess of both Humans and Mephoru, channeling her energy into Latti in preparation for the final battle against the revitalized Raven. As a goddess, Phoenix doesn't require a Mephoru to race and has incredible skill! Phoenix's arm is completely enveloped in fire, ending in talons, which she uses to defend herself if enemies get too close. They're powerful, ignite enemies on contact, and are in-general very dangerous to get close to.
Phoenix's magic is identical to Latti's - Fire, Trailblazer, Haste, and Side Dash. However, it tends to be a bit more powerful.
Yes
Raven Featherweight

Raven
God of Destruction*
Vitality:
★★★★★

Accel:
★★★★☆

Charge:
★★★★☆

Flight:
★★★★☆

Power:
★★★★★

Weight:
★★★☆☆
Lord of invention and pollution. He may be the creator of the human race, but they exiled him regardless due to his destructive nature. Like his sister Phoenix, Raven is capable of high-performance racing without a Mephoru to ride upon. TBA Yes

Cadence and Crossbones
Vitality:
★★☆☆☆

Accel:
★★★★☆

Charge:
★★★★★

Flight:
★★★☆☆

Power:
★★☆☆☆

Weight:
★★☆☆☆
A mysterious and calm young woman from a distant land, whose pale face rivals that of a corpse. She is somewhat cold and uncaring, never showing any emotion, but always seeks to know people better anyway. It’s kinda weird, really... Cadence wields a rapid-fire pistol that can be wielded with ease at all times, regardless of weight issues. Its rapid barrage can be somewhat inaccurate when fired to the side, and they tend to hit most on enemies directly in front of or behind her, making magic her best option when it comes to facing foes racing alongside her.
Cadence’s preset comes equipped with Reverent Echoes and Polymnia’s Voice - her signature spells, which also come with the DLC. She also has Flash Shot and Orbital Shields to improve her defense even further.
Yes

Magic

Magic is a key gameplay element, being present in every gamemode in some form. Nearly every spell costs Mana to use, but each can change the balance of a race entirely.

Name Stats Description
Fireball 10% Mana
0.25 second cast time
A basic projectile attack that bounces off of walls. It doesn’t do much damage, but its low Mana cost allows it to be used repeatedly with little risk.
Ice Shards 15% Mana
0.25 second cast time
A cluster of projectiles that spread outwards in front of the caster (unless otherwise specified). Their range isn’t very good, but their quantity makes them a powerful close-range offensive.
Wind Disc 20% Mana
0.5 second cast time
A projectile that homes in on players in front of the caster. Its relatively sluggish vertical movement makes it easy to dodge via Flying.
Flash Shot 20% Mana
0.5 second cast time
An arguably slow projectile that is best used at close-range, where it’s most likely to hit the target. On impact, it blinds the target, giving the caster a chance to close in.
Shade Pulse 15% Mana
0.25 second cast time
An AOE attack that releases a pulse of darkness. It doesn't do much damage, but its knockback and ability to protect against other projectile spells make it useful regardless.
Trailblazer 50% Mana
1 second cast time
Causes the caster to leave a trail of fire behind them for a three second, which can damage foes if tread upon. Works very well with Haste, but the combination costs a lot of Mana.
Thin Ice 50% Mana
1.5 second cast time
The caster summons a large patch of icy ground underneath them, which can make movement harder for rivals attempting to walk on it. Best used near hazardous terrain.
Satellite Cutter 50% Mana
2 second cast time
The caster summons a larger disc of wind to float around them for five seconds. Enemies that make contact with the wind disc will be tossed backwards and take some damage, making it ideal for defense.
Haste 25% Mana
no cast time
A boosting spell that temporarily increases the caster’s speed. Good for quickly catching up with other racers or taking certain shortcuts.
Side Dash 20% Mana
no cast time
A dashing technique that can be used to make a quick aerial recovery or evade an attack. It can also be used to quickly approach a rival player. Cannot be stolen by Copy Cat - it can only be nullified.
Orbital Shields 50% Mana
1 second cast time
The caster summons a trio of mirage-like shields that orbit them. The caster cannot use other spells without first dispelling or losing the shields, but they are capable of blocking enemy magic.
Heal Aura All Mana
1.5 second cast time
A restorative technique that completely drains the user’s current Mana supply to completely restore their Health. Downside is, its lengthy cast time means it can be risky to use in a fight.
Copy Cat 100% Mana*
no cast time
A strange ability that captures a spell being used by a nearby enemy and reverses the effects. If an attack is absorbed, its fired back at the enemy. If a support skill is used, its effects are applied to Copy Cat’s caster. It requires precise timing, and only nullifies some skills. Cannot be stolen by Copy Cat - it can only be nullified.
Polymnia’s Voice 35% Mana
2 second cast time
A spell exclusive to the Reaper’s Representative DLC. The user summons the mysterious being Polymnia, who races alongside the player. Polymnia will automatically take spells fired at the caster and attack their closer-range assailants, but will despawn after ten seconds or after losing all her health.
Reverent Echoes 60% Mana
1.25 second cast time
A spell exclusive to the Reaper’s Representative DLC. The user summons the mysterious being Polymnia, whose powers cause soundwaves to be released with the caster’s footfalls. These soundwaves deal low damage and knock rivals away.

Trivia

  • This game draws from multiple places when it comes to its inspiration.
    • The basic concept was inspired by the user named White Kirby. He was accused of making his namesake character a ripoff of Kirby and defended himself by saying that, seeing how his series was inspired by Kirby Air Ride, the hero would have to be some sort of Kirby. This game is basically MMC’s rebutal.
      • These origins are referenced by one of the characters in the game - Blanc, whose pale color scheme, dragon- and beetle-themed Mephoru armor, and role as a self-proclaimed hero who is actually an asshole are all based off of White Kirby’s namesake character.
    • The ability to cast spells while riding Mephoru is inspired by Final Fantasy.
    • The concept of bird riders is somewhat similar to the idea of Loftwings in The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword - giant birds that form bonds with inhabitants of Skyloft at a young age - as well as the Chocobos from Final Fantasy. With this in mind, Mephoru were designed to be more similar to roadrunners than traditional birds or ostriches.
      • The similarities between Mephoru and Final Fantasy’s Chocobo are referenced by one of the characters in the game - Aerora, whose name and appearance are inspired by Final Fantasy’s Black Mage, and Vanilla, their yellow Mephoru, inspired by the Chocobos.
      • The inspirations drawn from miscellaneous Nintendo games prompted the creation of Commodore Tonendin, whose history is inspired by Captain Falcon from the F-Zero series and his Mephoru's appearance inspired by its namesake, Falco Lombardi from the Star Fox series. Tonendin's name is also an anagram of Nintendo.

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