Bomb Monkey is the latest title from Renegade Kid, the same team that released the hit 3DS eShop title Mutant Mudds last year.  Unlike the platformer Mutant Mudds, Bomb Monkey is a classic style puzzle game with various modes.  Is this new eShop title worth your hard earned money, or is it a total bomb?  Read on.

Bomb Monkey’s game play is pretty simple.  A player holds the 3DS on its side, and the game is viewed on the touch screen.  A wall of colored bricks slowly rises to the top of the screen where the player-controlled monkey sits.  If that wall of bricks reaches the ape, it’s game over.  The monkey is controlled with left and right on the D-Pad for positioning and pressing down will throw his held item.  Holding up on the D-Pad will have the blocks on the screen rise up faster until released.

The monkey holds and throws one item at a time.  These include colored bricks, girders, bombs and super bombs.  Thrown girders, which can also appear randomly within the rising mass, have either vertical or horizontal arrows on them.  If a bomb hits these girders than the explosion will extend throughout the game play area in the designated direction.

Regular bombs explode in a small plus shaped explosion taking out colored bricks.  If a brick of a certain color is hit it will also destroy any block of that color touching it in a chain.  Super bombs have double the explosive range, but must be thrown quickly or they will explode in the monkey’s face stunning him for a few seconds.  These super bombs also have the ability to destroy bricks with locks on them in one hit when regular bombs take two shots to accomplish the same task.

Also rising up with the blocks are letters that spell out BOMB.  Throwing a bomb at one of these letters will collect it.  Once the player has spelled out the word the monkey will have the ability to throw unlimited bombs for a short period of time.

As previously mentioned, Bomb Monkey has various gameplay modes including Endless, 2P Versus, 2P Co-op, Rescue, 3 Minutes and Numbers.  Endless is what most people would expect from a puzzle game, only ending when the bricks reach the top of the screen.  The goal is to obtain a high score.

In both multiplayer modes the game is only played with one 3DS system.  The first player controls the action as they would in solo mode, with the 3DS on its side.  The second player stands opposite of the first player and uses the top screen to see what is going on and the A, B, X and Y buttons to move their monkey and throw the bombs.

The Versus mode continues until one player’s blocks hit the top of the screen.  If one person performs a good combo they will be rewarded with blocks appearing in their opponent’s play area.  The Endless Co-op mode goes on until one player loses, and the goal is to work together to earn a high score.

Rescue is my favorite.  The objective in this mode is to free a monkey that is trapped in a cage that rises up with the blocks.  The cage has 50 hit points.  Regular bombs take one hit point off, while super bombs do double the damage.  The goal is to complete the task as fast as possible.  My best time so far is 2:24:54 and I often find myself booting up the game for a quick fix in this mode.

Those also looking for a short burst of play will enjoy the 3-Minutes mode.  This special mode works exactly the same as the endless game, but on a timer.

Numbers is another unique take on the regular gameplay.  Scattered throughout the screen are the digits 1, 2, and 3.  The objective is to destroy the numbers in sequential order.  Once the third number is destroyed, the field is reorganized and the numbers once again must be destroyed in the right order.  The player attempts to get a high score, and the game ends if the numbers are blown up out of order or if the blocks reach the top of the screen.

Bomb Monkey is entertaining, but not perfect.  I still think it should have included more features.  It would have been great to have online leader boards or even online Versus and Co-op modes.  Sadly Bomb Monkey is only a local experience.  It also would have been nice if Bomb Monkey had more than one music track to listen to while playing.

Bomb Monkey may not be the most original game ever, but it’s still fun.  Pulling off combos, especially when involving multiple girders, feels very rewarding.  Bomb Monkey is also very inexpensive at only $4.99.  Having this game on my 3DS at all times is really a blast as it’s a great way to kill a short amount of time, and I’ve found myself indulging in the fun frequently since I’ve purchased it.


Here’s the Rundown:

+ Fun
+ Many Game Play Modes
+ Unique Multiplayer
+ Perfect For Short Bursts

– No Online Multiplayer
– Lacks Online Leader Boards
– Only One Music Track While Playing
– Not The Most Original Puzzle Game

8 and 8.5 represent a game that is a good experience overall. While there may be some issues that prevent it from being fantastic, these scores are for games that you feel would easily be worth a purchase.

Bomb Monkey was Developed and Published by Renegade Kid for the Nintendo 3DS eShop.  The game was released in North America on the eShop on June 28th, 2012 with an MSRP of $4.99.  The copy used in this review was purchased by the reviewer and played to completion.

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