Review: chick chick BOOM (Wii)

Back in Easter 2007, developer tons of bits, also known for the well-received flash game Mission in Snowdriftland, created chick chick BOOM for Nintendo of Europe. It was simple, yet fun. Unfortunately the game was turned off at the end of April. Luckily for us, tons of bits have refined the formula and have created an all-new version of the game for WiiWare.

In chick chick BOOM, two players take it in turn to launch attacks at each other. You have three main weapons: a bomb, a weight and a chick-eating plant. After selecting the relevant big button you need to use the pointer to connect the dots displaying the icon. You can now launch your attack with the A button, enabling you to choose a strategic time to strike your enemies. Once you’ve whittled down the health of all the opponent’s chicks, you’ve won. Simples.

However, there are plenty of things thrown into the mix. You can use the Wii Remote’s pointer to draw lines on the screen – you have a limited amount of ink that can be displayed at once – in order to defend your chicks from attack. You can also anticipate where your opponent is going to draw their defensive lines and draw yours in the way – blocking their defence. Even though this is turn-based, you have to stay alert during your opponent’s turn.

Each arena – a city, a ship and a haunted wood – has its own special attack, as well as a lightning special attack that appears on all three arenas. These special attacks appear randomly and can be triggered by any player, regardless of who’s turn it is – when the button lights up it’s a mad dash to draw the icon and trigger it. All weapons can be upgraded by connecting the dots really, really fast – each weapon (including the special weapons) have two additional levels of power. After plenty of practice you should have no problem pulling off the more powerful variants most times.

During the battles you’ll notice Corncobman (a walking corn-on-the-cob, naturally) walking in the background. Shoot him with B and lovely bits of corn will land on your side of the arena, giving your chicks precious health. A pinata also floats above the arena, and falls down once enough damage has been dealt to the chicks. Shoot it (again, with B) and it’ll fly to your side of the arena. Your opponent can also shoot it to knock it back to their side, resulting in a frantic match of table-tennis while still trying to launch attacks at each other. Once a pinata lands, it gives out power-ups. They can make chicks more defensive, distort your opponent’s icons or give you extra line-drawing abilities.

chick chick BOOM is primarily a multiplayer game. In a four player match, one player on each team does all the line-drawing while the other performs the attacks. It’s frantic, competitive and hilarious. It’s easy to get into and is great for one quick match or twenty epic matches.There’s no online mode, but chick chick BOOM is best played when you can shove your hand in front of your opponent’s Remote. The fighting can be off-screen, too.

When you’re on your own, chick chick BOOM gives you three mode to choose from. Duel Mode lets you battle an Easy, Medium or Hard enemy while Time Mode give you unlimited chicks and the winner is whoever gets the most points when the time is up. Pro Mode nets your team of chicks against a never-ending horde of evil chicks. It keeps a record of your highest score in both single and team games.

There’s no campaign mode as such, but chick chick BOOM has 9 additional teams to unlock by completing achievement-based tasks. These range from the simple “Win 10 Rounds” to completing a whole match with nothing but fully-upgraded weapons. The harder ones should take a while to get.

chick chick BOOM combines simple appearances to a unique and frantically fun battle system. It’s easy to get going, but takes a lot of practice to master. It’s an absolute blast in multiplayer and has enough challenge to keep you occupied while you’re on your own. This is a brilliant first try from tons of bits.

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