Most gamers can remember the so-called console wars of the 16-bit generation. At the time, each of the console competitors used every advantage they could to show how their system was the right system to own. Along with graphics and other features, companies leveraged the coolness factor of their system's mascots. Nintendo had cemented Mario early on, while Sega finally got around to creating Sonic, and the TurboGrafix-16 wisely dropped Keith Courage in favor of a more marketable and all around better mascot, Bonk.
Sadly, the TG-16 did not gain enough market share to warrant a follow-up system in the states, and minus the few outings Bonk had for Nintendo handhelds, he is still fondly thought of as a mascot of days gone by. Now here would be the sentence in which I would say "until now." You know what, that sentence will do just fine. Hudson Entertainment is bringing back Bonk and his platforming ways. To Bonk fans everywhere that's good news, but unfortunately that's the only good news.
Hit the jump to see why.
Bonk: Brink ofExtinction (XBLA, WiiWare, PSN) Developer: Pi Studious Publisher: Hudson Entertainment To be released: Spring 2010
From the ground up, what was shown and playable of Bonk: Brink of Extinction had the right mix of game elements you would need to bring an old platforming franchise back for old and new fans alike. The 2D levels are in place, but now with 3D character models. There's a world map to traverse instead of having to play the whole game at once. There are online and co-op modes so you and friends can retro game together to your heart's content. And you get the same old Bonk as before, but now with many new abilities.
Except, it doesn't really feel like the same old Bonk. The Bonk of oldhad a certain charm to him that doesn't come through in this version. What made Bonk so adorable back in the day was that he was a little guy who was being tough, not a tough guy who was little. In this version he's just a cute little guy. By no means is that a bad thing, it's just that there's no personality to the character other than the cuteness.
As far as the levels go, you can see from the screen shots that the bright colorful nature of the series has remained in tact. Many old franchises that relaunch seem to forget that the bright colors and snappy graphics of yesteryear were an important part of the attraction (looking at you, Rocket Knight). The new Bonk certainly comes through in this department, but it falls a little flat in its level design. Although pretty to look at, the levels are wide open with little challenge in way of enemy placement and physical layout. It's as if the level design was initially geared towards the co-op play as opposed to a solid single player experience, and because of that there really wasn't much in the way of fun or challenge when played alone.
Regardless of whether you're playing alone or with friends, you will notice that the controls also need some work. Bonk's signature moves, the headbutt and the spinning aerial headbutt, look like they're missing some frames of animation and feel very disconnected from player input. Overall, the whole controlling aspect of the game felt loose, especially with respect to Bonk's controls, and this will need to be addressed to appease any fans of the original series.
Which at least brings me to some good news for those fans! I'm informed that Bonk: Brink of Extinction is still very much a work in progress, and what was shown is not indicative if the final product. This is very, very good news since it will give the developers and Hudson time to make Bonk's return a triumphant one. Too many companies who bring back old platformers make the mistake of thinking a platformer is just "walk to the right and jump." Considering how well the Bombermanfranchisehas been treated over the years, it would be a shame to see Bonkget this treatment. Especially since there are plenty of gamers out there that want to see him succeed.
Photo Gallery: (4 images)
Click to zoom - browse by swipe, or use arrow keys
This blog submitted to our editor via our Community Blogs, and then it made it to the home page! You can follow community members and vote up their blogs - support each other so we can promote a more diverse and deep content mix on our home page.
Torchman Mandatory readingJoe Parlock Ursaring is the best pokemon, followed shortly by Meganium. Duh.Roxas1359 Gotta go with Vaporeon as it is absolutely adorable and makes for a great Water-Type.
I'd upload a photo, but my internet is being screwy.
Torchman Regice!Jcan Cool site never heard of beforeTorchman absolutfreak My new least favorite type of team mate in Heroes of the Storm: they guy that declares the game is over after the enemy succeeds on one objective completion.Heat Gengar!! Poison type FTW!
ScionVyse Luxray is the only best Pokemon.The Dyslexic Laywer Quick post your favorite Pokemon!Nekrosys Hell yes. Nekro just pulled this from a Pokemon card booster pack. Don't judge me, I find the game to be fun, even if my deck is terrible.KnickKnackMyWack So I decided to tinker around with some assets in Source Filmmaker and make a still image. Kind of a Jurassic Park-inspired thing with dino assets from that Ark game. Care to offer some comments, critique, etc.?LaTerry I think I broke it...Torchman I have joined the discord group! Now I can call your waifu shit in more than one place!TheBlondeBass Everyone's posting about waifus and I'm just here posting a blog about why I enjoy a recent game instead. This is why I'll never be promoted.Gundy There is a Spelunker themed dungeon in Megadimension Neptunia called Neplunker. It even comes complete with Spelunker music and dying from falling off waist high ledges! 10/10 would game over again.RadicalYoseph Reminder: We have an unofficial chat page on Discord! It's fast and easy to sign up and join, too! Just create an account and click this link to join: https://discord.gg/0koh7AdmqhhpYQe4
(Expires after 24 hours)The Dyslexic Laywer You know among all the bosses I've fought I didn't expect Vagina Tooth Dragon to go down like a bitch.TheKodu News Tip off for anyone who wants it. Seems Binding of Issac has been banned from the Apple IOS app store.
Nathan D Waifu Wars piece is up. But also, I got the Trails of Cold Steel limited edition in the mail the other day and just now looked at the pin you get with it. Wow, that horse is one smug looking son of a bitch. Kind of makes me want to punch him...