Monday, 30 January 2017

Dreammix TV World Fighters (Gamecube)

So, when Super Smash Bros Melee came out on the Gamecune and proved to be a massive hit, way bigger than its N64 forebear, there were a few me-too platform fighting games that tried to ride its coattails, mostly licensed from popular anime of the time like Digimon, Groove Adventure Rave or Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo. Dreammix TV World Fighters is even more of a Smash Bros wannabe than those games, as like Smash Bros, it's a big crossover, and it actually pre-empts the more famous series in two ways: it's a multi-company crossover, and it features Solid Snake as a playable character!

Yes, it's a crossover featuring characters from the videogame publisher Hudson Soft (providing characters from Bomberman, Bloody Roar and others), the toymakers Takara (represented by Transformers, Beyblade and some dolls) and the pachinko machine manufacturers* Konami (who probably have the most recoginsable line-up, having characters from Gradius, Twinbee, Castlevania, and some baseball series alongside the famous Mr. Dave Snake). Like most of these games, it doesn't use a traditional health bar system, instead having fights decided by a convoluted system involving coins with hearts on them.

How it works is this: at the start of a fight, coins with hearts on them will rain from the 'bove, and all the character present will scramble to collect as many as they can in the few seconds before they disappear. During the fights, taking damage means dropping coins, until, when you have no coins left, you'll shrink down to a tiny size and a big glowing heart will come out of you and float around. If you can catch that heart before anyone else, you're back in the game, but if not, you're no longer able to win, but you can still move around in your shrunken form, like a small useless ghost (Iguess this is so players aren't left with nothing to doing after getting eliminated). The last player left at their full size is the winner, of course.

The actual act of playing is very similar to Smash Bros: you have buttons for jumping, normal and special attacks, throws and blocking. You do different attacks by pushing the analogue stick in the right direction while pressing one of the attack buttons. The most flagrant thing is that the shoulder buttons are used for blockng, and while blocking, you character crouches and gets surrounded by an impenetrable bubble. Shameless!

I'd feel unnecessarily harsh referring to this as a poor man's Smash Bros, as I enjoyed as much as the "real thing" (although to be fair, I do consider Smash Bros to be a bit of a poor man's Power Stone 2 to begin with), plus it has a bit of a more exciting roster than its consolemate Melee, especially if you don't particularly have a great interest in many of Nintendo's first party titles or their style of character design. I guess all I can say is that if you like Smash Bros, but you'd like to see Optimus Prime and Tyson from Beyblade fight Bomberman and a Moai head, then you should definitely play this game. If not, then probably not. What a boring copout!


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