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Bun & Bunee: Island Hop

For: Mobile

We're all ears

Product: Bun & Bunee: Island Hop | Developer: Luma Arcade | Publisher: Luma Arcade | Format: Mobile | Genre: Casual, Puzzle | Players: 1 | Format: J2ME | File size: 123KB | Reviewed on: N95 8GB other handsets | Version: Europe
Bun & Bunee: Island Hop Mobile, thumbnail 1
It might sound like an 18-30 package holiday in Greece for rabbits, but Bun & Bunee: Island Hop actually poses a surprisingly important question: just how would a couple of South African TV stars, who also happen to be rabbits, react if a bear with a penchant for walking underwater started chasing them?

Yes, doing this job does lead to a fair few late nights, but I've not lost my marbles just yet. This bizarre quandary is in fact Island Hop's focus, following a series of frankly Rayman Raving Rabbids-like bunnies as they try to escape the clutches of a bevy of 'baddies'. Not my words, but Bun & Bunee's.

Essentially, you spend the game using keys on your number pad (that correspond to nine islands on the screen) to move bridges around so that said rabbits don't end up in a watery grave.

Each tap of the key rotates one half of each island bridge clockwise, and your job is to move them so the two halves meet up to form one whole, stable bridge for your bunny to hop over. The catch here is that you don't have any control over where your fluffy friends wander, your only job being to switch the bridges around to accommodate their movements.

The end goal is to get the rabbits to their warrens, though each level is automatically reset if you let any of your bunny buddies stroll off the edge of an island, or if one of the ever-changing baddies (which have the ability to walk from island to island without any need for bridges) gets its clutches on them. It's Bun and Bunee's job, not yours, to avoid said baddies – you're just here to guess where the rabbits will head along their way.

Depending on the speed you pick (there are three available), this makes for a bit of a guessing game. At its slowest, you can easily tell just where the rabbits will head, the grid-based nature of play meaning it’s only possible for them to walk up, down, left or right. At its quickest, however, play is hectic – particularly when you're dealing with more than one bunny per map. The route to success comes from planning and predicting the safest and most likely path your friends will take to victory.

The confusing thing is, they don't always do the same thing on each take. Sometimes one of the rabbits will sit idly while the others make their way, while another time they might all head off in completely new directions. Your enemy, too, adjusts his track, making the whole thing rather unpredictable.

In one way it acts as an added bonus as it means, from one restart to the next, there's no guarantee you'll fall into the same trap twice. But the flipside is you often have no chance to correct your mistakes.

It's a peculiar set-up that makes Bun & Bunee an oddly cruel prospect. Here's a game that penalises you when your fluffy bunny friends fall into the hands of the enemies stalking each level, yet you actually have no control over anyone's movements.

Still, despite this oddity, this remains a playable little puzzler and, when set to run with pace, a rather addictive one too. There are a few creases that should have been ironed out, sure, but although flawed, Bun & Bunee: Island Hop isn't disappointing enough to send you totally hopping mad.
Bun & Bunee: Island Hop
Reviewer photo
Keith Andrew | 12 June 2009
A curious little puzzler, Bun & Bunee: Island Hop comes with a fluffy bunny full of charm, but also packs in a fair amount of frustration, too
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