Spielberg, EA score with Boom Blox
EA and Steven Spielberg have created an addictive puzzle game that is great for casual and hardcore gamers alike.
Boom Blox is the first game to result in the collaboration between filmmaker Steven Spielberg and Electronic Arts. When we first got a look at the title back in February, we were impressed with the game's accurate rendering of real-time physics and unique gameplay. Now that we've had a few days to explore the final retail version of the game, we're proud to say that we're officially hooked.
The game has you use your Wii remote in a variety of game modes that involve everything from careful blox removal (essentially virtual Jenga), to smashing blox with a variety of different projectiles. Each mode has an "adventure" campaign you can play through, each level more challenging than the last. The game presents a list of goals in which you are awarded gold, silver, or bronze depending on your efficiency. All the levels vary and are quite satisfying and addictive--you'll even find yourself retrying them to reach a gold medal. There are close to 400 puzzles, so forget about blowing through the game in a weekend.
Boom Blox is certainly a technical achievement as its physics, while somewhat floaty, are dead on. Much effort has gone into the realism-factor, guaranteeing you'll never see a level play out the same way twice. But perhaps what is most attractive about Boom Blox is how easy it is to simply pick up and play. We let a few people who were completely disconnected from anything Wii try the game out, and much to their surprise, playing the game was almost second-nature. The intuitive controls make logical sense, so once you know which button does what, the motion control comes automatically.
We had a lot of fun playing through the game's multiplayer modes which supports up to four players. Don't worry if you don't have enough remotes, most modes can be used with a single controller. The party games let you compete with friends through all of the gameplay variations available in the single-player. When you add a group of people all competing for points into the mix, it adds a whole other strategic dimension to the game.
EA didn't stop there. The game also includes a level-creator which allows you to customize a Boom Blox environment that you can share with friends. Unfortunately for now, this is limited to those you've shared your Wii friend codes with. We'd love for this to become completely public so that anyone can upload and download user-created levels, as this would dramatically increase the overall replay value of the game.
Boom Blox may have a child-oriented presentation, but it is certainly fun for all ages. We'd easily recommend it to anyone with a Wii. The action is sure to please the casual gamer, and there's enough here to satisfy even the most hardcore of gamers as well. Boom Blox is available now and retails for $50.
Also, Check out the Boom Blox trailer.