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PlayStation Vita  header logo


For: PS Vita

Ooh, dirty

Product: Germinator | Developer: Creat Studios | Format: PS Vita | Genre: Arcade, Puzzle | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
Germinator PS Vita, thumbnail 1
In-between grabbing the big blockbuster and high-profile indie games on handheld, it's always nice to have a bash at a few smaller arcadey releases.

Germinator takes the gameplay behind the Bust-a-Move bubble-popping series and puts a germy spin on it, giving you a number of diseases to get rid of through the time-honoured pursuit of matching stuff.

It's fun in small doses, but a lack of any real tactics or direction stalls the action, making this a quick salve for boredom rather than a cure.

Vaccination station

By firing coloured germs into the fray and matching like-colours up you can make germs grow to such a size that they eventually pop, taking surrounding germs with them.

The goal is to kill off all the black germs before the rising mess of disease reaches the top of the screen. Along the way you'll be able to inject specially boosted germs into the fray to trigger special abilities that can potentially clear the screen.

There's plenty of content to be getting on with in Germinator, from the main Story mode, which keeps throwing levels at you one by one, to the Puzzle mode, which asks you to give some real thought to where you fire your germs.

Those looking for a good Bust-a-Move style matching game should have a blast with Germinator, thanks to its snappy gameplay and online leaderboards. There's lots of like here.

No cure

But if you're looking for a real challenge you may feel short-changed, as Germinator's insides are a bit messy.

For starters, the method for scoring the most points is rather confusing. I tried causing the biggest combos, and finishing as quickly as possible, but kept coming up short.

Eventually I tried just firing germs randomly at the floor on one level, and ended up as the number one player in the world at that level. The methods for actually getting good scores are hugely ambiguous.

This undermines the action rather quickly - a game focused on high scores in which the method for getting high scores isn't clear is fundamentally flawed.

But even if you look past this problem Germinator isn't very exciting anyway. It's still just a Bust-a-Move game about matching colours, and most players will get bored relatively quickly.

If you're after a Bust-a-Move game, Germinator's worth a play. Otherwise, you might be better off delving into the heaps of great indie games the Vita currently has to offer first.
Reviewer photo
Mike Rose | 27 March 2013
Germinator is rather sketchy in its execution, but offers fairly solid Bust-a-Move gameplay
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