GamingReview: Dyna Bomb

Review: Dyna Bomb

-

- Advertisement -

With a well-documented lack of AAA releases during the first year of this generation of consoles, it would be quite easy to assume that gamers lucky enough to find the mythical hardware have nothing new to play. 

Actually, there’s a relatively large number of indie games released on a weekly basis, but the reason you don’t often hear about these games is that some are considered ‘Shovelware’, a term used to describe video games that are created by developers who spread their development resources as thinly as possible over many different games to ‘catch’ gamers scrolling through the bargain bin. 

Developer/publisher 7 Raven Studios just happens to be one of those smaller teams flooding the PS store with cheap games, and they have now added a port of their 6-year-old Android platformer, Dyna Bomb, to the mix.

Unfortunately, the strange sense of excitement one gets when purchasing something so cheap – like it might somehow, somehow, be a diamond in the rough, is immediately dashed when you arrive at an incomprehensible main menu and cheesy soundtrack, and bringing home that you really do get what you pay for.    

The goal of the game is simple, obtain a key to open a large door in each level that’s hidden in segmented sections accessible via switches and portals and collect everything that shines. Enemies attempt to halt your progress by zipping back and forth and combining with a challenging one-hit death system, while jewels can be collected and spent on extending failed runs and temporary power-ups. With one hit all that’s required to end your run, so bombs allow you to clear the map of the enemy and head straight to the goal.

Collect your bombs, fire them at enemies and pick up jewels. That’s the name of the game here.

Traversing the levels is done via your jetpack, which in theory should be a great deal of fun, I mean who doesn’t enjoy the odd play of Flappy Bird, but the movement here is too rigid and is far from the intuitive control system that the developer describes it as. It’s also very clear that the move to consoles hasn’t been thought through very clearly as even the resolution has been poorly adjusted and everything seems too large from the characters to the world itself, making it look far uglier than it should. 

Furthermore, the implementation of the controls makes very little sense. The triggers could have easily been used for simultaneous use of the jetpacks and bombs without any issue, but instead, you have to hold down ‘X’ to use the jetpack and then slide your thumb across the pad to hit the bomb button using ‘O’. It’s a puzzling choice and is unnecessarily awkward.

Worst of all though, it seems no one was in charge of actually making this game fun instead of just functional, as the experience is as bog-standard as features within it, so even though there are numerous elements to the gameplay, nothing is significant enough to make this seem more than a glorified smartphone game (which ironically has more features in its Android version than this one) only adds to the reputation that the PlayStation store is slowly turning into a bargain bin platform like Steam, where the price points are king. Thankfully the PS store’s ratings are not as skewed as Steam’s and awful games tend to have an equally awful rating, which quite frankly, this one deserves.

Flying around is not as fun as it should have been and is even inconveniently blocked by the interface at times.

Playing devil’s advocate for a second, no game is without its faults and Dyna Bomb does have some redeeming features, such as satisfaction gained from perfect runs to complete the level, but as there isn’t even a feature to record your times – and completing a level has the ugliest ending animation I’ve ever seen – it kinda makes you wish you hadn’t.  

Perhaps it should also come as no surprise for a developer that has numerous fruit machine and puzzle games under their belt, but they also added a daily roulette wheel of temporary upgrades, but its inclusion is perplexing, as it not only expires as soon as you die (which you will an awful lot) but the explanations are unlabelled, so you just sit there tapping away at each button attempting to figure out which will bring it up.   

How’s that for an end screen animation. If there was an achievement for questionable inclusions this game would win it every time.

A shoutout should be made to the character’s running animation, which is actually decent, but it’s the animation you see the least in a game where you jetpack everywhere, which pretty much encapsulates what you are getting here.

In fact, the most enjoyable part of this game is not actually the game itself, but the developer’s description of it on the PS store as it makes you wonder what game they were referring to when writing it. It’s a level of quality that the game itself saw fit not to include, even after the benefit of having 6 years under its belt on other platforms. While paraphrasing a tad, the ‘intuitive, thunderous, and glorious arcade action game play’ must be in one of the secret levels that is purportedly hidden in the game.

Unless you were born in a vat of platforming goo and can only consume platforming games as way of staying alive, this is the kind of experience that you should avoid, as even though this game is ‘cheap as chips’ and entirely functional, you’ll likely want a refund for the precious seconds of your life lost. 

SUMMARY

+ Speedrunning......even though you can't record your times
+ A 10-minute platinum game....
- Repetitive everything - soundtrack, gameplay, levels
- It's effectively a 6-year old Android game with fewer features
- You have to pay for it

Played on PS4. Also available on Android, Windows, Nintendo Switch
Alex Chessun
Alex Chessun
Currently obsessed with the Yakuza series (minus no.7), Alex is an avid fan of immersive Open World games, quick pick-up-and-play arcade experiences and pretty much anything else good. He also desperately wants Shenmue 4 to happen - a lot.

Stay connected

7,137FansLike
9,254FollowersFollow
27,500SubscribersSubscribe

LATEST REVIEWS

Review: MX Vs ATV Legends

Save the farm and become a legend.

Review: Samurai Riot

Review: TombStar

Review: Severed Steel

You might also likeRELATED
Recommended to you

Review: Dyna Bomb+ Speedrunning......even though you can't record your times <br/> + A 10-minute platinum game....<br/> - Repetitive everything - soundtrack, gameplay, levels <br/> - It's effectively a 6-year old Android game with fewer features <br/> - You have to pay for it <br/> <br/> Played on PS4. Also available on Android, Windows, Nintendo Switch