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Crash Bandicoot MiniGames

For: Mobile   Also on: DS

Bandicoot-related mini-games on your mobile phone

Product: Crash Boom Bang! | Publisher: Vivendi Games Mobile | Publisher: Sierra Entertainment | Format: Mobile | Genre: Action, Party/ mini- games | Players: 1 | Networking: on one device | Format: J2ME | File size: 225KB | Reviewed on: N70 other handsets | Version: Europe
Crash Boom Bang! Mobile, thumbnail 1
We try not to bang on about console games in our mobile reviews here on Pocket Gamer, but in this case, some context would be useful.

See, you can argue that Nintendo's Wario Ware series has set new expectations for collections of mini-games: we now want lots of them on one package, and the sillier the better. This is A Good Thing if it means less lazy cash-ins, where a popular game character is shoehorned into a bunch of so-so mini-games in an effort to eke more cash out of gamers.

So, to Crash Bandicoot MiniGames. The outlook isn't promising (are gamers really clamouring for a Crash Bandicoot mini-game collection?) but while the resulting game doesn't really nail the wackiness factor, Vivendi has produced a fun title with a clever nod to Dirty Sanchez style multiplayer fun.

Based loosely on the disappointing DS game Crash Boom Bang!, Crash Bandicoot MiniGames features 14 mini-games, centred around characters from the original Crash games, including the bandicoot himself, along with Coco, Doctor Cortex and Nina Cortex. They're all simple one-thumb games, with varying levels of entertainment.

For instance, 'Crazy Mallet' has you pressing a button to block a mallet from hitting the good characters, while leaving it to thunk the baddies. 'Dropping' sees you trying to drop boxes from a plane onto a target on the ground, while 'Infernal Tower' has you, erm, dropping more boxes, this time onto a moving platform to build up a tower.

They're okay, but not hugely engaging, while the baffling 'Crash Baseball' is simply rubbish. Better, however, are 'I'm The Strongest', which sees you weightlifting by pressing a button to match an arrow on a gauge, and 'Cow Shoot', which has you blowing the bejaysus out of a bunch of innocent fresians. It's a mixed bag, in other words.

Single-player mode lets you play individual mini-games, or take them all on in turn to bag the biggest score. The visuals are colourful, and the sound effects fit in well – we're particularly fond of the way the cows moo as you blast them off-screen. Nevertheless, if this was all there was to Crash Bandicoot MiniGames, we wouldn't recommend it.

However, Multiplayer mode improves things, throwing in some free-for-all games where you all have to lay thumbs on the handset to compete, as well as more traditional pass-the-handset competition. There's also some neat in-between level bonuses and forfeits thrown in to spice things up.

Taken purely as a collection of mini-games, Crash Bandicoot MiniGames pales next to Gameloft's Ibiza Beach Party, which is sillier, has more games, and is more of a hoot to play. Yet as a relatively fun bunch of multiplayer challenges, most likely for younger mobile users to play, Crash Bandicoot MiniGames ain't half bad.
Crash Bandicoot MiniGames
Reviewer photo
Stuart Dredge | 10 March 2007
A mixed bag of mini-games that won't keep your attention alone, but may prove fun for a few friends.
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