Thursday, 23 February 2012

Nintendo DS Downloadable Games [Vol. 2] [DS] [QUICK&SHORT]

Bird & Bombs


  • Cheap - only £1.80 from the DSi Store.
  • Enjoyable story - you are a special forces bird sent in with your bombs to rescue the president's daughter from a house full of ghosts. It's for kids but it's still fun.
  • Simple premise and controls - you only control the angle and power of your bombs in each level to bounce off the walls, ceiling and obstructions to get the bombs into the ghosts mouths, thus blowing them up.
  • Good for a while - there's 50 levels to get through with bosses at key points to keep the action varied. Aiming for perfect scores will take you a fair while longer. After you beat the main story there is Story+ mode, where you have limited bombs to complete the story levels, again increasing lifespan. Finally there's Challenge mode - essentially a tough survival mode to see how many levels you can get through before you fail.
  • Sometimes annoying definition of what "going into the ghost's mouth" actually is - due to the nature of firing bombs that bounce off walls, sometimes a bomb can pass over the mouth of a ghost and not go in. On other levels, it's almost like the ghost has a magnetic mouth drawing the bomb into it.
  • The more difficult levels may make you want to smash your DS onto the floor. The deflated sigh that Bird with bombs makes every time it misses is saddening - and on the tougher challenges you will find that you fail a whole lotta times before you get it just right.

Cut The Rope


  • Cheap enough - £4.50 on DSi Store.
  • The idea here is that you have to cut the rope that is holding a sweet such that it falls into a worm-thingy's mouth (bit of an object-in-mouth theme going on here). That's pretty much it - only the rope will be attached to a whole bunch of stuff that will make this a lot more tricky than it sounds.
  • Some pretty complex physics puzzles later on - elastic bands stretch, balloons rise and pop and gravity keeps things in check. There are around 8 distinct puzzle elements that you will need to master - and you'll need to complete them speedily if you want the best scores.
  • 125 levels of increasing difficulty - with 3 stars to collect on each level. Getting 3 stars on all 125 levels is not impossible but certainly a challenge.

  • Touch controls aren't perfect - this means that the more complicated levels requiring quick, coordinated responses regularly end in failure.
  • This is a casual game, admittedly, but what exactly is the motivation to play this? To feed a fairly annoying green blob. 125 times. Could of done with a bit more than that really.

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords


  • It was free! The whole thing cost precisely zero pennies off the DS Store!
  • It's a colourful affair that has all of the fun and creativity of a Zelda title.
  • Great use of the touch screen for controlling the characters - using the gadgets and interacting with the environments works well.
  • Excellent multi-player and online features - playing with other gamers to fight through dungeons and earn the most treasure is enjoyable and rewarding.


    • Not quite a fully-fledged Zelda. There's a lot on offer here - and I can't really complain because it's free - but although it will keep you going for a few hours it isn't as ridiculously enormous as a usual Zelda title.
    • More than once I have had level elements not work - usually in online games. This means that you can't go any further and the level timer ticks on regardless. Restarting the level normally sorts it out but it's still a pain when it happens.
    • Possibly not available now to download - can't see whether it is available to purchase now that the free download period is over.

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