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Monday, January 16, 2017

Bomberman Returns

Konami, reviled as one of, if not the worst company in the video game industry dropped a bomb after Thursday night's Nintendo Switch Presentation. Unlike all the other bombs they've dropped, this one was good. because it was dropped by the cutest force of mass destruction in gaming, Bomberman. That's right, boys and girls, everyone's favorite little bomb planter is back in Super Bomberman R.

When the Switch presentation was closing, a number of games were flashed on the screen and I caught a one second showing of what I knew had to be a Bomberman game. What would make me assume such a thing? Simple: the way the explosion was portrayed. Everyone knows traditional bomb blasts in a Bomberman game go in a straight line when against a wall or make a cross explosion when nothing surrounds the bomb. Because of the unique way Bomberman's bombs go boom, anyone can recognize a bomb set by the little guy without being on top of the screen. Still, that one second I caught was hard to believe. A new Bomberman game? In the words of an anime character with his/her jaw to the floor, describing the someone's awesome power, impossible!

I thought the days of us seeing Bomberman and all of Hudson's previously owned franchises were long gone. After all, Konami did give console gaming a giant middle finger and ran off to make pachinko machines. Konami did say that they wanted to win gamer's trust back and given how they've pretty much taken a giant dump all of their franchises the past few years, one can see why most would look back at such words with arms crossed and eyes rolled, if they even bothered to look back at all. Well, I gotta say, bringing back one of my favorite robots in video games is a very good way to start rebuilding positive relationships with gamers.

Now I'm sure anyone that's played a FPS or even a third person shooter has taken an opponent out by means of  bomb. Yeah, you shoot stuff and people in shooters but bombs are more often than not, always a weapon in your arsenal. Blowing up strangers and your friends in Bomberman is completely different from blowing them up in shooters. In a Bomberman game, you are locked into a room where all players can see each other. The only means of taking out the opposition is by blowing them to smithereens. Sure, you collect power ups to make yourself a force to be reckoned with but when all is said and done, the bomb ends their pathetic lives. You don't stab them or shoot them, you blow them up and it is one of the most satisfying things in the world. There really is nothing quite like a tension filled multiplayer match of Bomberman.

Up to eight players can nuke each other in multiplayer.
If this isn't living, I don't know what is.

My friends and I had so much fun playing Super Bomberman, Super Bomberman 2, Bomberman Online and Bomberman Generations. You have not lived until you've swarmed your buddies with a line of bombs, see the look of panic on his/her face and let out maniacal laughter as their Bomberman dies a comedic death. Before GoldenEye and Perfect Dark, the first two Super Bomberman titles were our favorite four player games. Super Bomberman R supports up to eight players in multiplayer matches! I never got to play Saturn Bomberman, which allowed up to ten players so this will be my first time playing a Bomberman game with more than four players. Needless to say, I am very excited about it. Eight player multiplayer in Super Bomberman R is bot for local AND online.

If you get blown up, you can get revenge by dropping
bombs from outside the arena.
Bombemrn has always focused on multiplayer with a few exceptions (Bomberman Hero on the N64) but there's also a single player campaign that supports c-op play. I am a little interested to see what its about. I love the game's cutesy art style and cartoonish voice overs. I thinking going through it just for that alone will be worth the trouble.

No doubt many are concerned since Super Bomberman R is being published by Konami. Not only did Nintendo come together with Konami to help make Super Bomberman happen, but the game is being developed by former team members of Hudson so that does make me breath a sigh of relief. I'm hoping Konami doesn't decide to be Konami and find a way to screw this up because Super Bomberman R is one of my most anticipated Switch titles.

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