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Written by  :  Steve Hall (352)
Written on  :  Aug 31, 2000
Rating  :  4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars
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Summary

Great multi-player fun.

The Good

This is great multi-player action. Although the game will allow up to ten players to play, this many makes the game way to hectic. Personally, I recommend 4-6 players - any less gets boring, any more and it's just impossible to get a handle on the game.

The controls of this game are pretty simple once you get used to which button does what. It gets tricky to remember which powerups you have and how behave they. Picking up remote control bombs nullifies your throw powerup, since they use the same button. In other words, if you trying to throw a bomb when you have remotes, you'll just blow yourself up.

And on the subject of blowing youself up, this is remarkably easy to do. One careless move, one thoughtless slip, and you're toast. You have to keep your wits about you at all times, which makes this game very tense, but very rewarding.

The graphics in this game are great. Similar to the SNES original in terms of style, but far more detailed, with some really cute animations, like the way your head rolls off when you get killed. Plus the intro sequence is one of the best ever. There are some cool sound effects, but the best bits are the highly appropriate voices - when you blow yourself up the voice says, "You are a stupid man's idiot.", which perfectly sums up your state of mind at the time.

The Bad

This is NOT a single player game, and don't even think about getting a copy unless you actually have a LAN in your home (or at work, or wherever). If you do play it single player, you will get very frustrated very quickly - the computers know exactly where to stand to avoid bomb blasts, they can easily work out which is the only safe square to stand in, they will humiliate you. Not every time, but often enough to make it annoying. And if you do win against the computers, it'll be down to them making mistakes (which they can do) and that's a rather hollow victory.

The game music is really annoying. It's not too bad, and it is kind of catchy, but like those musical mobile phone tones, it gets repetive and annoying very quickly. There is one weird thing, in that you can only connect five PCs together to play, yet you can have 10 players. I'm sure you can do the math yourself, but any folk who share a PC are at a disadvantage.

The game as a whole is a 650MB install, which is ridiculous considering what you're getting. Most of that is music, and if you remove it all (which the game allows), the install comes down to a more reasonable 50MB.

The Bottom Line

Great fun for a quick blast, especially as a change of pace. If you've just had a long LAN session of Age of Empires, Starcraft or something similar, it's a great way to wind down before your guests make their way homewards. But if you don't have a LAN or access to one, or if you just don't play multiplayer games, then forget about it.