Mommy’s Best Games has been known for their high quality, fast-paced action games since the beginning of Xbox Live Indie Games. Explosionade is their latest title, featuring a large mech, and many, many explosions. This game, like Shoot 1UP, is only a dollar, and offers some great entertainment for the price. However, due to a few flaws, it’s not as easily recommendable as some of Mommy’s other games.
One thing about Explosionade; the game is great looking. This is a staple of Mommy’s Best Games titles, and it is evident in Explosionade as well. Very smooth in motion, detailed, and colorful, the graphics shine throughout the entire game. Large bosses are especially well-designed, taking up the entire screen with multiple limbs and massive attacks.
There are a few issues with the gameplay that hinder Explosionade. Despite this, Explosionade still manages to be a fairly good game (especially for $1.00, or 80 Microsoft points), it’s just not of the quality that has come to be expected of Mommy’s Best Games. Due to these flaws, Explosionade won’t just appeal to everyone. It’s still a good game, better than many of the games found in the Xbox Live Marketplace, but its flaws make it difficult to recommend for everyone.
Gameplay is fairly slow-paced, possibly hindered by the large size of the mech sprite. The mech that you play as only stumbles along at a slow pace at default speed. This, compounded with the mech’s size, makes it fairly difficult to dodge some of the large laser attacks. The real issue is the annoyance at just how slow it goes; Explosionade is an action game, it should be fast-paced. Thankfully, there is an option to increase movement speed, although that also increases overall game speed so it doesn’t do much to improve upon the problem. Explosionade does have some redeeming qualities, however.
Its gameplay, beyond the slow pace, is a lot of fun. The mech has two attacks; a laser and grenades (three out at a time). Some enemies can’t be injured by the laser, and breakable walls hinder the player (requiring frequent usage of the grenades). This part of the game is a lot of fun, as blowing up things should be. In addition to the grenades and lasers, the mech has the ability to shield and to fly. Flying is a little awkward to get the hang of, but the shield is a very welcome addition. This is mainly due to the fact that it aids in solving the issue created by a slow pace; bullet dodging. Due to the mech’s size and movement speed, some lasers are difficult to dodge, making the shield a valuable asset.
True to any retro-styled action game, Explosionade has an over-the-top story involving an alien attack, a prototype mech, and explosions. There is some great humor in here, including my personal favorite line, “When life gives you explosions, make explosionade!” This isn’t Oscar winning material, but it’s entertaining stuff given the context.
There are several other very small aspects of Explosionade that bugged me. The game isn’t incredibly long, but it did get a little repetitive, especially because I wasn’t trying to get the highest score possible. The game could have used a few more unique levels, differing from the “kill enemies and blow up walls to get to the end” formula. These are more minor, however, and don’t hinder the gameplay as much.
Explosionade is a good game, maybe even a great game. However, its flaws makes it difficult to recommend as a must buy. Considering the price, as well as the excellent graphical style and fun–albeit flawed–gameplay, Explosionade is a great game. For fans of the genre, and fans of Mommy’s Best Games, Explosionade comes highly recommended–it’s just not for everyone.