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Space World 2001 Hands-onBomberman Generation

Hudson's upcoming Bomberman game uses 3D environments and cel-shading to deliver an all-new Bomberman adventure.


While most Bomberman games have been roughly the same over the years, a few Bomberman games--usually the ones appearing on Nintendo systems--attempt to bring more to the table than just a classic multiplayer strategy game. Bomberman Generation picks up where games like Bomberman Hero and Bomberman Tournament for the GBA left off.

The stage we played at Space World 2001 lets Bomberman run around a 3D world, which is viewed from an overhead perspective. The L and R triggers are used to rotate the camera, which is useful for seeing items that would normally be out of view. Instead of merely shooting fire in the four compass directions, your bombs in this game explode in every direction. Enemies still stick to set patterns, but the nature of the world makes catching them with your bombs a little tougher. Aside from merely placing bombs, you can also pick them up and toss them, or pick them up and charge the bombs up until they are larger, more powerful bombs. These bombs will break through much larger objects and explode with a wider radius. Aside from blowing up large barriers, we also used bombs to cross rivers by planting explosives at the base of a tree, knocking it over and allowing Bomberman to proceed.

The game appears to have much of the same animal-raising features found in the recent RPG-like Bomberman game for the Game Boy Advance, Bomberman Tournament. As you progress, you'll find more and more animals--called karabon--that can be selected in your subscreen. Selecting different karabon gives Bomberman different inherent abilities, such as speed boosts and the like. It's unknown if the karabon-fighting tournaments from Bomberman Tournament will also be included in the game.

Graphically, Bomberman Generation uses the same cel-shaded graphical style found in the upcoming Dreamcast release, Bomberman Online. The environments and characters found throughout the game are nice and colorful, and the game moves along at a very smooth pace, even when planting multiple bombs and filling the screen with explosions.

The current build of Bomberman Generation is 65 percent complete. When finished, the game will feature four-player support of some kind. Look for more information on Bomberman Generation as it becomes available.

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