Friday, January 30, 2009

Big Bang Mini

Developer: Arkedo
Publisher: Southpeak Interactive
Release Date: Jan. 21, 2009
System: Nintendo DS
ESRB Rating: E
Official Web site

In a nutshell: The only game I know of that lets you shoot fireworks at robotic pirate penguin snowmen.

0:00 Space Invaders Extreme got me on a sort of portable shoot-'em-up kick, I guess. I've heard just enough about this one to be intrigued by the premise and concerned about the controls at the same time.

0:01 "Arkedo!" says a chorus of what sound like little kids. On the title screen, fireworks go off constantly on the top screen while constellations float by on the bottom. Tutorial mode seems a logical place to start: "Learn to shoot fireworks! Then please save the world." Well, since you asked so nicely...

0:02 "Welcome to the Big Bang Mini training center! Soon, you'll find out how to light up your world with fireworks!" How soon? HOW SOON?!

0:03 Movement means dragging my ship around the touch screen with the stylus. Shooting means flicking the stylus up towards the top screen. The tutorial tells me to do it lightly, like striking a match against the touch-screen. This is a perfect analogy. "Well done! What magnificent fireworks! It's like you've been doing this all your life!" Flattery will get you everywhere, game.

0:04 Apparently firing is independent of my ship's position ... I can shoot these fireworks from wherever I want on the bottom screen, and at angles, too. Makes me wonder why the ship is there in the first place.

0:06 Ah ... the ship is there to collect the little stars that fall from the sky when I hit targets. Switching between shooting and moving is fun in the tutorial, but I can see it becoming a little hectic in a game situation. Also, when I miss targets, burning firework debris comes down and I have to dodge it. This is bad firework design, IMO.

Read the full review at Crispy Gamer

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