Written by  :  Carmelo Lia (38)
Written on  :  Mar 20, 2016
Rating  :  3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars

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Bugs Bunny 50th Anniversary Disappointment

The Good

'The Bugs Bunny Birthday Blowout' for the NES, first released in 1990, on the 50th anniversary of everybody's favourite Looney Tunes character Bugs Bunny, is a rather simplistic 2D platformer similar to Super Mario Bros. 2.

In the game, Bugs gets an invitation to his 50th birthday party. However, the other Toons are envious because nobody ever celebrated a party in their honour, so they decide to stop Bugs from going to his party. At the end of each level, the player faces one of the Toons as a boss. There is Daffy Duck in your way, who is impervious to all attacks. So how can he defeated? By reaching the big carrot, of course. Tweety throws tomatoes at the player, while Yosamite Sam and Elmer Fudd shoot corks and nets, E. Coyote charges at you with his fork and knife and so on. It is a bit strange fighting these beloved characters, but they are all here.

The gameplay is as simple as possible. You collect Warner Bros. squares (which are converted in Bugs' preferred currency, carrots) and bash enemies with your wooden mallet, Looney Tunes style. There is also a fun bonus round after every level in which you can get some extra lives. It seems that the party was organized very far away from Bugs' home, as you get to traverse many different 'stages' throughout the game, such as forests and deserts. There are six stages in total, which are further divided into four separate rounds each. Each round does not take a lot of time to complete, including the boss fight, which is ideal for younger players (which the game was targeted for).

The Bad

For Bugs Bunny 50th anniversary, this game lacked inspiration. The birthday-themed concept is certainly zany enough for a Looney Tunes episode, but for a videogame it doesn't make as much sense. The enemies in the game that the player encounters have nothing to do with Warner Bros' franchise, such as what I assume to be a soda bottle and a glowing sun. Yes, a glowing sun.

Each time you get hit, you are unable to attack for a period of time, which forces the player to flee instead. There are a lot of times when you try to skip ahead as much as possible when you are hit, since you are invincible during that period, which is surely a sign of bad game development.

But, I disagree wholeheartedly with the AVGN's review on Youtube of this game. At the end of the day, it is just a bit of harmless fun for youngsters, even though the Looney Tunes show appeals to everyone.

The Bottom Line

'The Bugs Bunny Birthday Blowout' is definitely a disappointment for me considering it is a licensed game. It settles for mediocrity, maybe with the excuse of targeting a younger age group. However, for an NES game, it is not without its redeeming qualities, however few they may be.