Will you be my Buster Buddy?
Everyone remembers Buster Bros., right? What about Super Buster Bros.? Ring any bells? You must have heard of Buster Buddies?! No?? Well, neither had I (course, my memory is not what it used to be.). Buster Bros. Collection was a mystery when it was handed to me. Once I saw the gameplay, however, I immediately remembered pumping a few quarters into it at the local arcade. Did a forgettable arcade game deserve to be re-released on its own CD for the Playstation? Apparently, Capcom believed that it did, but does it really cut the mustard?
For those of you (and me) who don't remember what all the Buster Bros. games were about, here is a brief synopsis. The original Buster Bros. involved the "Bubble King" attacking the cities of Earth with "multi-sized breakable bubbles." (If I attacked Earth, I'd use multi-sized un-breakable bubbles, but I'm not the Bubble King . . . yet.). Anyway, it's up to the Buster Bros. to stop his evil-doing. Super Buster Bros. is the same idea, but you've become super through some weird act of science, or magic, or just plain luck. Buster Buddies ignores the first two plots and has you as a master criminal out to steal all of the world's precious artwork. "Buddies in crime" just doesn't have the right ring to it, however.
But the plot has absolutely nothing to do with the gameplay. The object of the game is to pop all the bubbles. Large bubbles turn into two medium bubbles, medium bubbles turn into two small bubbles, and so on, and so forth, until the bubble get small enough for you to pop. Sounds basic enough, right? The tricky part is that the screen will occasionally overflow with bubbles, thus creating a fast paced, frenetic game.
Unfortunately, there aren't really enough gameplay variations to warrant three different games.Buster Buddies is by far the best of the three. It has both the Tour mode, where the backdrop changes to the different artwork you're trying to steal, and the Panic mode, where bubbles fall down non-stop for ninety-nine levels, that were introduced in the two earlier games. Since Buster Buddies is the best version of the same game, there is no reason for anyone to play any of the other games on the CD. It has better graphics, faster gameplay, and better control than either Buster Bros. or Super Buster Bros. You even get to be cheesy bandito stereotypes complete with their own dances and musical instruments. What more could you ask for?
This fact raises the question as to why this was released on its own CD. Buster Bros. Collection really isn't that much of a collection if you're only going to play one of the three games. Capcom should have just released a collection of all their old arcade hits; surely they could have fit it all on one CD.
I should also note thatBuster Buddies contains some impressive backgrounds. As you try to steal famous works of art, said artwork is plastered as a background for each level. Hey, stop dropping bubbles on my Matisse, evil Bubble King!!
Buster Bros. Collection is a good game for those who miss old style arcade games. Buster Buddies is a great two player game and the Panic mode is genuinely tuff. Unfortunately, this game is not worth $30. If this was still in the arcade, we at Game Revolution played it enough to cost about $5. Still, it is a fun two player game, and (if anyone actually remembers this game) it's a blast from the past. All in all, just Buster Buddies should have been released on a CD containing many arcade classics. Then it might be worth the price tag.