As we’ve seen time and time again on the latest Nintendo platforms, mini-games equal money. For a struggling franchise like Bomberman, perhaps the best thing for Hudson Soft is take their beloved characters and stick them — against their will, I’m sure — into another generic set of mini-games. It worked on the DS a year ago, and could well work for the Wii this time around. But if it doesn’t work for you, at least Bomberman Land Wii is budget priced at $30.
While this game does not hinge on a story, your favorite Bomberman, White, goes to the Bomberman Land tournament to become Champion. What follows is a sinister tale of romance, deception, and greed…. No, of course not! Although, I could see that in Jerry Bruckheimer’s future.
The structure of the game is one that will be very decisive for buyers of this game. The mini-games are scattered around a 3D environment that actually takes some energy to get to. To play a game, you have to spend tokens, and getting tokens means you have to go to a certain place, and only after that can you play the game. This might not seem as tedious to other gamers, but I found it unbearably slow and confusing, considering I just wanted to play a simple mini-game.
Similarly, the cut-scenes that tell the “story” (pay attention, Jerry!) are painfully slow. The dialogue boxes move at a snail’s pace, and the characters act like Teletubbies in slow-motion. Combine these scenes with the confusing and labyrinthine layout, and you’ll wish you went for the frenetic WarioWare instead. Which, by the way, I heartily recommend.
The Bomberman Land mini-games themselves, when you get to them, aren’t bad. Reaction-timed games like the sword draw could be fun with a friend in multiplayer, but frankly, most of them aren’t replayable. Not all of the mini-games use motion — which is okay — but we’ve seen these games before in 100 different ways, and I expect we’ll see them again. Bomberman Land also includes the classic Bomberman game, which will delight fans of the old game. What, you mean the B-man wasn’t always a mini-game collection? Ah, kids…Let me tell you a story. It’ll honestly be more enjoyable for you than this game.
- Score: 5.0
— Stephen Woodward