review
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POSTED 25/7/11


MS ’SPLOSION MAN

Twisted Pixel
Xbox 360/XBLA

Pretty in pink, isn’t she? Erm, weeeeeeeelllllllllllll... Anyway, Ms ’Splosion Man is to ’Splosion Man as Ms Pac-Man is to Pac-Man. (Pause whilst world go “duh!” now).

Yep, pinked-up with a bow slapped on her bonce – and when we say pinked-up, girl we mean it (insert finger waggle). The vibrancy here makes the Powerpuff Girls look like an exercise in sepia-toned palletic restraint. There’s enough pink to make Barbie gag (with or without a spoon). Meanwhile, our girlie shaped ordnance inanely squeaks movie quotes and pop lyrics as she blasts along. Imagine Samantha from Sex and the City gone kaboomy (and even more annoying) – you even collect fabulous shoes.

Girliness-overload isn’t the only change to the puzzly/platformy concoction. Not just confined to the lab, you venture into the big wide beardy world. New beasties abound, with extra ways of a-to-b-ing like rocket cars and zip lines. Presentation-wise, only gluttons could want more; there’s nifty humour and Mario-esque hubbiness to oodles of bonus art, music, movies and even gameplay stuff that can be purchased for bucks earned in-game. One, the ‘2 girls, 1 controller’ mode (ahem!), is sublime, if not tricky. The left analogue stick controls one Ms Splosion (Wo)man and the right stick another. Bah, who needs friends?!

However – don’t you love how that word can jar like a controller crack to the cranium? - all the presentation and pinkness ever can’t hide blecchiness. Many confuse insanely difficult with challenging, or inexplicably define it as great game design (hello Super Meat Boy). Well, they’re wrong, Mister. Or Ms for that matter. No fun grindy frustration wins here too regularly – and usually due to iffy level design rather than iffy playing.

We can’t help it, we’re a bit pouty. Kinda like when Andie opted for the major appliance instead of Duckie...

take me back to the start...

 



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ALL WRITTEN CONTENT COPYRIGHT © AMY FLOWER 2008-2017. GAME IMAGES COURTESY OF RESPECTIVE GAMES COMPANIES.