When we previewed Crash: Boom Bang!, Crash Bandicoot's first game for the DS, we were optimistic that it would prove to be a sufficiently fun party game. After playing the full retail version, however, our optimism has completely crashed and quickly burned into a dismal pile of ash.
In CBB, similar to the Mario Party series, you move one of eight Crash characters along a themed game board, earning or losing points depending on where you land and partaking in periodic multiplayer minigames.
Although many of the 40 minigames sound like they should be fun - such as racing, flying, shooting baskets, hitting opponents with mallets, rolling around a giant pool table and trying to knock each other off of the board - they are instead agonizing bouts of frustration.
In just about every minigame you'll be frantically scraping at the screen trying to get your character to do anything that resembles a helpful move while cursing at the poorly programmed and inaccurate touch screen controls, the horrible sense of depth and the way the CPU seems to randomly choose whether two objects have touched or not. Only a 3-D maze and a couple of the shooting games offer any moments of enjoyable relief. The rest of the minigames are simply more work than fun.