Anyone hoping for a game of equal quality to Bomberman Generation will ultimately find Bomberman Jetters to be a bitter pill to swallow.
When Bomberman Generation was released for the GameCube back in the summer of 2001, it's fairly safe to say that the system was in need of a unique offering. The system itself hadn't even been on the market a full year, and the familiar Nintendo faces like Mario, Link, and Samus had not yet made their respective debuts on the system. Enter: Bomberman. Bomberman Generation was the first fun, non-GBA Bomberman game in quite a number of years, and it also took the series in some interesting, new directions. Furthermore, it proved to be one of the first great action platformers for the GameCube. It is for perhaps this reason most of all that Bomberman Jetters, Hudson's sequel to Bomberman Generation, is such a big disappointment. It's been almost two years since Generation hit shelves, and despite the time lapse between games, the two are identical in most every major way. The few ways in which Jetters differs from its predecessor don't improve upon the formula in any way; instead, there is a heavier focus on an insipidly lame storyline and an almost completely unnecessary second playable character.
Bomberman Jetters has two distinct modes of play: single-player and multiplayer. The single-player game is similar to the one found in Bomberman Generation, though it has a heavier emphasis on an anime-style storyline and platforming rather than having the almost entirely-puzzle based gameplay from the previous game. Essentially, the setup here is that on Planet Bomber (presumably the home of our hero), all is not well. An evil consortium of bad, bad people, known as the Hige Hige Bandits, is going to crash an artificial comet, known as Dark Star, into Planet Bomber. Of course, our vertical-line-eyed hero won't stand for such a thing, and with the aid of his wacky, yet completely irrelevant, friends, he sets out to stop Dark Star from pulling an Armageddon before time runs out.
To do this, you will have to bomb your way through four different worlds, each with six stages. Each world is representative of one of Dark Star's engines, with the ultimate goal being to get to the end of each world and shut off each engine. The four worlds all have their own distinctive theme, such as a fiery, volcano-themed world and a more underground, cave-based environment. Generally, the level designs are pretty good, with backtracking kept to a minimum, and each features a nice array of traps and pitfalls and at least a few different types of puzzles. None of the game's puzzles are exceedingly difficult, but the ones that do present some challenge are fairly well done and manage to make you carry out at least a bit of critical thinking. However, the bulk of puzzle-solving in Jetters is quite easy, and none of the game's levels should take you more than 15 to 20 minutes to complete.
When not engaging in some rudimentary puzzle-solving, you'll have to bomb the living hell out of various enemies, bosses, and power-up containers along the way. Bomberman Jetters' basic combat consists of dropping a bomb near enemies, running away, then running back after they've been obliterated. You can also throw and kick bombs to keep a bit of distance between you and certain enemies, and you can also create bigger, more-powerful bombs by picking up bombs and holding them over your head. During your adventure, you'll acquire items that you can use to create new, specialized bombs, like hurricane bombs, aqua bombs, and electric bombs. These bombs can be created at specialized locations found throughout each world and are quite effective in certain combat situations. Unfortunately, the same problem that plagued Bomberman Generation's special bombs plagues Jetters, in that it's often quite easy to overlook where a bomb creation area is, and though special bombs aren't required to progress, if you miss one, you'll have to backtrack through the world to find that missing location. It's essentially just a nuisance, but it's one that really ought to have been dealt with.
Another holdover mechanic from Generation in Bomberman Jetters is the use of "charaboms." Charaboms are similar to Pokémon, except that they don't battle one another. Instead, you collect charaboms to aid you in your quest. Each charabom has a specific ability, such as helping you move across a narrow pass, shielding you from enemy attacks, or even just boosting all of your stats. You can even level up charaboms by collecting food for them, which, like the rest of the game's power-ups, is pretty much scattered everywhere. While the charaboms as a whole are helpful, you can't help but groan at how much of a Pokémon rip-off they are. Not only are the creature designs extremely similar to Pokémon monsters, but they even go so far as to yell out their name in grand Pokémon fashion when called upon. Of course, this fact doesn't really detract from their usefulness in the game, but still, the whole thing just feels extremely tacked on and cheap.
- Player Reviews: 7
- Game Universe:
- Bomberman (TG16, NGE, DS, FDS, ZX),
- Bomberman Jetters (GBA, GC, PS2),
- Bomberman Land (WII, PSP),
- Bomberman Live: Battlefest (X360, WII, PS3),
- Bomberman Collection (PC),
- Bomberman Land (PS),
- Bomberman Land Touch! 2 (DS),
- Bomberman Land Touch! (DS),
- Bomberman: Act Zero (X360),
- Bomberman Hardball (PS2)
- Offline Modes:
- Number of Players: