Enter Bomberman! The TV-headed HudsonSoft flagship associated with too many people spending too much time huddled around a TV and a SNES or a Saturn. Having made the jump from Activision, Vivendi has signed the iconic little character for a GameCube outing.
Bomberman Generation makes full use of the game industry's new black (cel-shading) giving the game world that pleasant cartoon feel as debuted in Sega's Jet Set Radio. And as you can imagine, it works very well indeed.
Generation is a quest game, with an elaborate story set on Planet Tentacles. As ever, bad guys, in this case intergalactic pirates known as the Hige Hige Bandits, are out to steal Professor Ein's essential Bomb Elements following the destruction of the ship they were being transported. As you can imagine, in Bomberman Land, such things as Bomb Elements are hugely valuable, as bombing stuff is more popular that football, fishing and eating popcorn combined.
And so the quest commences. It's essentially a drawn-out puzzle game in which environmental challenges are overcome by blowing things up in a certain sequence. In a move similar to the popular GBA outing enjoyed by Bomberman, you must decide where and when to plant bombs, in order to progress though each section. Hudson has obviously taken great pains to ensure that as much of the game world as possible is interactive, which is strangely reminiscent of Zelda for the SNES.
Arguably the main draw of Bomberman Generation is the swanky new multiplayer mode included within the petite disc on this GameCube exclusive. Rendered in candy-coloured 2D, four players can relive the golden years in a series of five frenetic gameplay types. Furthermore, abilities unlocked in the main game can be used in multiplayer mode, making it the most comprehensive 2D Bomberman battle to date.