Xbox 360

Bomerman Live is a blast

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If you've never played any of the previous 60 or so iterations of Bomberman, then Bomberman Live on the Xbox Live is as good a place to start than any.  The objective: bomb the hell out of anything and everything and frag some opponents while you're at it.  Last man standing wins.

 

The last Bomberman game I played was Super Bomberman for the SNES, so the superior graphics of the Live version were a bit jarring. I spent my first couple of games getting accustomed to the powerups and controls. 

 

Powerups include bomb up (you can lay more than 1 bomb at a time), fire up (increase the explosion range of your bomb), speed up, remote control, power bomb, as well as powerdowns such as a dreaded skull that seems to pick a random handicap for your player.

 

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Playing singleplayer against the computer is a good way to familiarize yourself with the game as the AI is pretty smart.  But let's face it, the main reason anyone would buy this game is to play against real live people.  The matchmaking system is easy to use, especially for quick play. Just select quick play, wait a few seconds and it'll throw you into a room full of players waiting to play. Once everyone is ready, the match starts.  After each match, you can view player stats and wait until everyone is ready again and then start another match with the same players.

 

My favorite part of Bomberman Live? Character customization!  You start with a handful of heads, faces and bodies to choose from, but more character pieces can be unlocked through online play.  It's a silly part of the game, but it's funny to see Bomberman wearing a tutu and a cowboy hat.

 

Graphically, Bomberman Live is bright and colorful. Maybe a bit too colorful since it makes things hard to see in the beginning, but hey, hectic confusion is just one of the fun parts of Bomberman.  I thought that the 8 players on one field online would be too overwhelming, but that's hardly the case.  It's fast and you have to keep your wits about you, but it's also a lot of laughs.  Especially when everyone is using the mic.  One player in a match I was in actually remarked, "Holy sh*t this is better than Uno!"  With that type of testimonial, how can you say no?

Louise Yang