Bust a Move (Puzzle Bobble in the UK) is so simple you’d have to be a monumentally cretinous imbecile to get it wrong. Stick to the formula established on day one, and it’s practically bulletproof. Still, it’s gone off the rails plenty of times – drowned by unnecessary features, or bolted on to justify a disc’s asking price. None of that on Live Arcade, though. Bust a Move Live sticks resolutely to the old formula as if its very life depended upon it.
Like Tetris, the formula can be reduced to nothing more complex than ‘drop blocks; make lines.’ In Puzzle Bobble’s case it’s ‘shoot bubbles; match colours’ and again, like Tetris, the simplicity belies a game of skill and strategy – but with cute dragons thrown in. You’ll learn to judge angles like a billiards player and make snap tactical decisions which rest on a perfect three-point bounce over and over again. There’s a campaign mode with a series of increasingly complex bubble fields and the usual infinite modes, with multiplayer both online and off.
Like the triumphant 360 appearances from the likes of Worms, Bomberman Live, and Pac-Man CE, Bust a Move Live has resisted the temptation to go nuts with extras, making for a return to the original’s Tetris-testing simplicity.
Oct 15, 2009