You've probably wondered what a computer bug looks like, but were afraid to ask. Well now's your chance to find out. Bug Bomber realistically depicts the inside of your Amiga.
But what you didn't know is that cyberpunks are running around, laying eggs, planting bombs and mines to waste all those nasty little bugs. And if you don't believe me, ask our editor Pat. He told me, and he should know.
The scenario may be different but Bug Bomber is a more elaborate form of the great Dynablaster.
You run around a maze of square blocks, some of which you can destroy, and try to outwit your opponent whether he be a computer player or a 'normal' human being. Up to four of you can play, the aim being to blast your opponents, and their hatchlings, to kingdom come.
Right royal variety
You have a variety of weapons on hand, from bombs to thunderbolts. The ultimate weapon, though, is the cyberbeing's ability to lay eggs of five different kinds. Depending on which way you jab the joystick, your little computer person will drop different things: up for a bomb, right for a thunderbolt and left rewards you wit a mine.
To lay eggs, it is up to give downward jabs depending on what you want to hatch out of that particular blob. This is a very fiddly way of doing things and an result in utter chaos when your opponent has got you trapped between hell and high water.
But after a few games, once you're accustomed to the controls, the real fun of Bug Bomber comes shining through. Although it's not as manic as a five-player round of Dybablaster, four people crowded round an Amiga seriously working against each other is always a guaranteed source of amusement.
Value for money is what you want and that's what Bug Bomber is all about, buy one game, get two free. The one-player game is a little repetitive (too much of a good thing?), but both of the multi-player modes are thoroughly enjoyable.
Cooperation is the key to the first multi-player game - up to four of you can pool your resources to beat the ever powerful computer to pulp. The second multi-player jaunt is a trip to oblivion for all but one of the players. The most manic version of the game, it involves all the players trying to kill off everything but themselves and their offspring. For once with a 'cute' computer game, the sound isn't a hindrance. In fact, playing with the volume up is an advantage because you can hear the eggs hatching and know exactly what sort of weapons your opponents have laid down.
Running into an enemy or bombing yourself by mistake (it happens more often than you think) will cost energy points. Each player starts off with 100 points, different numbers of which will be lost depending on which baddy you encounter. Planting weapons and laying eggs costs energy too, but you gain extra points by picking up EN bonuses or collecting the energy left when an Energy egg hatches. There are also IQ bonuses scattered around the screen, which give your hatchlings greater intelligence and enable them to make estimated rather than totally random moves (I really do wish that someone would give some to Timmy Mallet).
All the options and the different weapons are wholly confusing at first, but perseverance pays off eventually and you're left with a fun game that can entertain a whole family at once. At first it doesn't seem to have the same addictive hook as that of Dynablaster - the complicated controls take the edge off it - but Bug Bomber will grow on you. Give it a second chance and it will impress.