With versions appearing on the Sega GameGear, Sega Saturn, Sony Playstation, Nintendo Super NES, Nintendo 64, and the Neo Geo (both home and arcade), Bust-A-Move, a kind of upside-down version of Tetris, is one of the most popular and prolific puzzle video games of all time. Originally known as “Puzzle Bubble” (and starring Bub and Bob from the video game “Bubble Bobble”), players fire colored bubbles up towards clusters of other bubbles. Connect three bubbles of the same color and the bubbles will pop, sending anything clinging on to them crashing to the ground — and in two-player mode, over to your opponent. Bust-a-Move definitely falls under the “easy to learn, difficult to master” genre of puzzle games.
This time around it’s Bust-a-Move 3000 for the Nintendo Gamecube. I also recently played Bust-a-Move for the PS2, and can honestly say they’re identical.
The oddest thing about Bust-a-Move 3000 is, it seems a lot like Bust-a-Move for the Super Nintendo from almost a decade ago. Despite huge advances in technology, the game looks, acts, and plays the same. Sure, there are a couple of new types of “special bubbles” that appear in higher levels, and both versions support rumble controllers, but other than that, this is the same game it was ten years ago.
That’s not to say it’s a bad game — it’s just unchanged. Gameplay is very addictive and very fun, especially with two players. I had hoped that the next generation of consoles would bring Bust-a-Move into a four player arena, but this is not the case.
The 2D Graphics are bright, funny, and colorful — kids will love looking at the different animals as they shoot bubbles into the sky. The sound effects and music are equally kid-friendly, although you might end up playing with the volume controls like I did — the sound effects were way louder than anything else.
If you liked the old Bust-a-Move series, miss it, and don’t already own it on another console, pick up either one of these (Gamecube/PS2). If you already own a copy of this for another system, there’s no reason to upgrade.