While there are literally hundreds of games in the puzzle genre that began in earnest in the late 1980s with the launch of Tetris, very few have made any improvements on the foundation that classic established. One notable exception is the Bust-A-Move franchise of games.
Bust-A-Move 4 continues the tradition of fun puzzle games with steadily advancing bubbles instead of falling blocks and cute little dinosaurs calling the shots. It's essentially the same old formula, but there are a few new twists that make this game worth buying and playing.
The action is good, especially with the many game modes available to keep you occupied. While the goal of busting bubbles is essentially the same in every form of the game, the results are different in each mode. At times the results might include a good thrashing of a friend who has agreed to play with you, while at other times, the results advance a story to its conclusion. Even more important are those times when you reach a feeling of satisfaction from knowing you made it through 12 increasingly difficult levels.
While burnout is easy with most puzzle games, Bust-A-Move 4 keeps the fun alive by allowing gamers to switch from one mode to another. Take that, single-mode Tetris clones! The bubbles, backgrounds and other features of Bust-A-Move 4 are eye-popping and gratifying, even though the game itself is very simple. While all the visual flair is not necessary, without it, the game would not have the same positive impact.
Graphically, Bust-A-Move 4 is impressive and has both a retro and cutting edge anime feel at the same time. It's retro because it stars Bub and Bob, the dinosaurs who are among the elders in the videogame universe, and cutting edge due to the newer stylized characters that look like extras from Dragon Ball Z.
Bust-A-Move 4's sound is entertaining and upbeat. Again, the developers have taken cues from the world of Japanese animation and included sound effects and music that would fit well in most anime soundtracks. There are no spoken words but plenty of weird mumbling and evil laughing from the characters during gameplay.
Overall, Bust-A-Move 4 is a fun game in the puzzle genre that can be enjoyed by gamers young and old, skilled or unskilled. It's a great game for new gamers or players who don't have the dexterity or stomach for multi-button, joystick combos or blood-spurting martial arts action. If you like puzzle games, Bust-A-Move 4 is one to add to the collection.
Graphics: The game features very good graphics. Rich characters and lush backgrounds fill the screen in every mode.
Sound: The sound is very good and features up tempo music and cartoon sound effects that fit the game well and keep it moving.
Enjoyment: Like many puzzle games, Bust-A-Move 4 is difficult to play and then simply ignore. Chances are good that you'll find yourself drawn into the game for hours at a time.
Replay Value: Because of the different modes and challenges, the game will keep you playing for a good long time.
People who downloaded Bust-A-Move 4 have also downloaded:
Bust-A-Move 3 DX, Bust-A-Move 2: Arcade Edition, Bust a Move, Bejeweled, Monopoly (1999), Bubble Bobble featuring Rainbow Islands, After Dark Games, Astérix & Obélix XXL 2: Mission: Las Vegum
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