Silent Bomber (PlayStation)

ESRB Rating
Critic Score
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
User Score
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  G'Kyl (53)
Written on  :  Nov 01, 2004
Platform  :  PlayStation
Rating  :  4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars
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Old-school action at its best!

The Good

Silent Bomber is a classic action title with a twist. The futuristic, anime-style story lets you play as Yutah, who is part of a rebel assault team on its way to take out a huge enemy strike carrier. However, your team's vessel is being shot and goes down onto that very spaceship - which is were you come in. What sets the game apart from most action titles is its unique control over your character's weapons. Yutah has been trained in the "art" of explosives, and so he does not blast away his enemies with a gun of some sort but by placing a bomb under their feet or directly onto their chest and then pulling the trigger. This might sound odd and difficult to direct in the heat of battle, but the game actually never loses momentum. On the contrary, Silent Bomber is one of the fastest and most breath-taking games on the market, whose intense gameplay can easily be compared to some of the best arcade releases. And in spite of its simple premise, the game also requires some tactical finesse along the way, or you will not stand a chance against the masses of opponents it throws onto you. Due to the fact that your bombs do not explode before you push the button and thanks to your ability to place an ever increasing number of bombs before letting them all go off at once, you can decide to either lay down the ordnance in one spot, and so have an exponentially larger explosion to crush your foe, or leave some in several corners and so hit more than one enemy when you let the boom go off. This increases your arcade-type rating at the end of each level. However, the score is not translated into credits or so - upgrading your weapon is done by collecting so-called E-Chips. If you do, you can increase the number of bombs to lay simultaneously, the range within which you can place bombs onto your opponents as well as your shield level. Since you can change these values any time along the run, you will often thank the designers to be able to chance this configuration according to the type of enemies that approach you. You will be especially thankful when adjusting it before and during boss-fights, of which there are plenty. Plenty of good ones, that is. Huge machines make up the opposition of many of your battles, but bosses are particularly impressive. Not that they stand out from the entire rest of games, but they keep coming at you in an impressive number. Naturally, everyone has its own attack styles and singular weaknesses, and you are advised to approach them with one of your three special bomb types, namely napalm, an EMP blast and plasma. The latter poses a serious threat to almost every enemy in the game as it is the most destructive weapon you carry. Napalm lays a handy firewall, which can keep your back free from being attacked for a while, whereas the EMP disables machines for a short period of time. Again, these bombs too can be placed as combos and so have an increased impact. Last but not least, Silent Bomber sets an interesting tone during cut-scenes in-between missions. Instead of making your character the arch-typical hero guy, he comes out as a rather depressed, lonesome, "Leon - the Professional" kind of soldier. Sound- and graphics-wise the game is just impressive. Large explosions, both acoustically and graphically will keep you looking for more. Add this to some well developed shooting grounds and you have one of Playstation's technically best games.

The Bad

There is hardly anything to complain about. The game is smooth and fast and easy to learn, while the gameplay is most rewarding. Maybe a few more notches of colour would have done something to a few of the stages, but that's as much a complaint as I can think of.

The Bottom Line

Silent Bomber is an overlooked jewel! Few action games have ever been able to capture its intense sense of fast-paced, satisfactory gameplay for all the time you play it. Plus, there is nothing like placing a good number of bombs onto one of the bigger enemies and then see and hear the machine burst apart after you pulled the trigger.