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Countdown to Bit.Trip VOID Day Two: Tumiki Fighters- Also, Halo 4


Here we are on a Saturday night, less than 48 hours away from the release of Bit.Trip VOID. Are you excited? I am... sort of.

Honestly, I'm not quite as preoccupied with the release of the game as I was when I started this Cblog series last night. Right as I was doing that "Countdown to Bit.Trip VOID Day One" post about 24 hours ago, I got an tiny piece of information regarding the next Bit.Trip game, tentatively called Bit.Trip 4. This "tiny piece" of info was actually a megaton bomb of amazing that totally blew my mind, but I can't tell you what it is. Suffice to say, I now want Bit.Trip 4 just a tad bit more than I want VOID, which is actually saying a lot, because I really want Bit.Trip VOID.

Anyway, with that disclaimer out of the way, I'll touch a little bit on the other big game that Bit.Trip VOID reminds me of -- Tumiki Fighters.

Katamari Damacy may have started the whole "get greedy, get in trouble" game genre about growth and consequences, but Tumiki Fighters was the first game (that I know of anyway) to take that concept to the world of shmups. As you can see in the above video, the game is all about grabbing destroyed enemy ships an attaching them to yourself, to eventually become the very type of over-sized boss bastard that lies in wait at the end of a level in any reputable shmup. The downside of getting boss-tough, you're also more vulnerable to attacks when you're as big as the screen, so constantly shrinking and growing yourself is a must if you want to stay alive (and keep a high score).

If you haven't played the game before, you really should- It's free, and it's fantastic. Like Ikagura, Tumiki Fighters appeals to our primitive understanding of the world and it's rules. Where Ikagura looks at how we want stuff that matches us and avoid stuff that's different from us, Tumiki Fighers is all about how the big guy is stronger than the little guy, and that people with more stuff have more worth than people with less stuff. What's really great about the game is that it takes a look at the flip-side of that idea as well. It asks you to become small and weak at times in order to survive, and shows you that being a screen-filling boss isn't as easy as it looks.

To make a game where the player is given the opportunity to meet a base desire (get big and kick ass), but is tasked to repress that desire (by getting small to stay safe) if they want to survive, is about as interesting as game design gets. Others "get big" games like Katamari Damacy and Nobi Nobi Boy are great too, but they don't involve the dangers of excess in the same way.

Tumiki Fighters also got released on the Wii as part of the game's semi-sequel, Blast Works. Not only does Blast Works contain it's own original Tumiki-style campaign, but it has the original Tumiki Fighters, three other Kenta Cho games, and an awesome shmup construction set. It's only $10-$20 new, so pick it up if you see it.

As soon as I have the time, I'm going to make a Bit.Trip VOID themed level in Blast Works. I'll let you know when it's done. Until then, check out this Blast Works-powered video of Halo 4.

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About Jonathan Holmesone of us since 4:12 PM on 12.04.2007

"Where do dreams end and reality begin? Videogames, I suppose."- Gainax, FLCL Vol. 1

"The beach, the trees, even the clouds in the sky... everything is build from little tiny pieces of stuff. Just like in a Gameboy game... a nice tight little world... and all its inhabitants... made out of little building blocks... Why can't these little pixels be the building blocks for love..? For loss... for understanding"- James Kochalka, Reinventing Everything part 1

"I wonder if James Kolchalka has played Mother 3 yet?" Jonathan Holmes

Wild Holmes pic by Cadtalfryn

AnthonyDressRun sprites by Jonathan Holmes