This article was originally published at Another-Castle.com
Blast ‘Em Bunnies
Platform: PS4, PS Vita (reviewed), Nintendo 3DS, Xbox One
Nnooo is a developer based in Sydney that has developed a number of games including Pop for iOS and WiiWare along with a number of titles for DSiWare and 3DS. You also might recognise the name as the publisher of Cubemen 2 on Wii U, which Another Castle reviewed back in 2014. Blast Em’ Bunnies is their latest release.
Blast Em’ Bunnies is a first-person shooter with the controlled character in a fixed position on a rotating turret. Evil bunnies are attacking your burrow and they must be blasted with a variety of different weapons including a carrot rifle, watermelon pip shooter, bean laser and turnip mortar. The main scenario ‘Survival’ involves endless waves and attacking bunnies and as the scenario suggests, you must survive as long as you can. There is also ‘Slaughter’ which limits you to two minutes of bonus earning carnage. There are multiple difficulty levels for both modes which are unlocked as you progress. There are also a whole host of upgrades that can be purchased with coins earned in the game and others that can be purchased as DLC.
The game begins with a brief tutorial showing the basics which are simple to learn. The Vita version has the option to use the gyro or analogue stick for aiming. The controls work smoothly enough but there isn’t much of a ballistics engine which sometimes makes it difficult to know if you are damaging incoming bunnies. Upgrades soon become necessary and as mentioned, can be earned by collecting coins in game. There are also missions to be completed that will earn large sums of coins including a daily mission and missions also unlock as you gain levels. This is all a slow process even if you’re particularly good at the game. Unless you’re willing to purchase multiplier upgrades (one of which is available for free), it’s going to take a long time to upgrade weapons and the hearts (armour).
There are a variety of different bunnies attacking your burrow including large lumbering giants, fast runners, flying bunnies, burrowers and grenadiers. There is also the occasion boss bunny and a golden one that grants a power-up giving you both temporary invincibility and high-powered weapons. All these bunnies simply have to be shot but there are tactical considerations for how best to take them down. One type holds a shield and you’ll have to destroy this or aim with precision at their exposed areas. The burrowers require good timing and awareness, the runners; speed and accuracy. The enemy type I found particularly difficult were the grenadiers as they often came out in groups and you have to take out incoming grenades, while stopping them lobbing more.
The base game is $7.55AU on the PlayStation network and includes the game scenarios and one arena. Additional skins and arenas can be purchased but the only differences are with the visuals and background music. As mentioned, you can also by multipliers and other purchases that will make the getting upgrades much easier. While the base game on its own, is decent value, all these upgrades if purchased in a bundle, would take the games price up to over $30. The different areas in particular should really have been included with the base game as they add much needed variety. It is hard not to contrast this with Run Sackboy! Run! which is free but with optional in-app purchases.
The base game is a decent time-sink and like most time sinks, is best for playing in short bursts. This makes the slow loading times when initially booting up the game much more of a problem. If you don’t have the skin or arena packs, the single music track and arena will get old fast. I had some fun with Blast ‘Em Bunnies but it didn’t last long due to the slow progression and lack of variety in the missions. The ideal scenario in which to enjoy this game is if you already have it loaded with the Vita in sleep mode and find yourself with five to thirty minutes free time. If you’re playing this on a console or generally play games for long periods of time, I can’t see it appealing to you.
Disclosure: A review copy of Blast ‘Em Bunnies was provided by the developer.