Homepage   Index   Game Makers   Feedback   Writers   What's Hot

Bubsy 3D
by Accolade Reviewed by: Mark Skorupa

One of the most popular titles from the days of the 16 bit machine has jumped into the 32 bit arena. Bubsy 3D takes our friend Bubsy and throws him into a huge, 3D world. Could this mean the end of 2D platform games that we all love?

For those of you unfamiliar with Bubsy, let's just say he is a cat with a major attitude. Bubsy always manages to get himself in some sort of a bind. Bubsy 3D is no exception. The story goes a little something like this. You play Bubsy and you're trapped on a strange alien world. Like any normal cat, all you want to do is go home. No problem. Just fight your way through 16 levels and collect all 32 pieces of your rocket ship and you are home free. To help you in your quest, a number of items lie scattered around just begging to be found.

Open up a can of cat-nip, sit back, relax and read on to see if Bubsy 3D will be responsible for a new level of platform games or if you should grab this one by the scruff of the neck and throw it out the front door.

Bubsy 3D is set in a huge, 3D, alien world. Your kitty talents include running, jumping, swimming, shooting and flying. Your job is to use these skills to guide Bubsy through the world, collecting atoms, extra lives and pieces of your rocketship.

Bubsy has 16 unique levels that get progressively more difficult. The first level is simple and is basically there to give you a chance to get used to the controls of the game. We will get into this a little later. This game has a very unique perspective that reminds me of Jumping Flash. A lot of the action takes place on platforms high in the air (as Bubsy says "What would a Platform game be without Platforms?"). Bubsy has total freedom to explore any area of each level. There are direction arrows that point you to the exit, but you can still explore every nook, cranny, and platform.

Of course, we could not be allowed to just prance around the levels without any opposition, could we? Bubsy 3D has its fair share of baddies to keep you from reaching the end. The enemies are disposed of in different ways depending on which enemy you are facing. Some can be jumped on while others must be shot and there are some enemies best left alone.

Bubsy 3D also has a 2 player mode which is best described as tag. The object of the two player mode is for one player to control Bubsy and try to gather as many atoms as possible. The second player is armed with a tag gun and charged with the task of shooting Bubsy with the gun. Once this happens, player two takes over control of Bubsy and player one starts shooting. This is pretty fun and a nice touch to allow others to join in instead of sitting and watching the whole time.

Now, earlier, I mentioned the controls. This is the one disappointing aspect of Bubsy 3D. The controls are very awkward. It's difficult to do anything fast. If you want to go back, you must stop, turn 180 degrees, then go. You are probably thinking "Yeah, So"? Well this takes about 1-2 seconds to do. When you have things being shot at you and enemies trying to get you, 1-2 seconds is a long time. This also makes shooting atoms at the enemies difficult. You are allowed only a short time to grab, aim and shoot. If the enemy is behind you, forget it. The atom will explode in your hands every time. Platform games require precise actions and split second decisions. Bubsy 3D's controls are very prohibitive to this type of gameplay.

The graphics of Bubsy are very bright and vivid. Instead of going for extensively detailed and texture mapped backgrounds, Bubsy uses blocky, but very colorful backgrounds. Where the graphics shine is in the cartoon look that all of the characters have. At times, you almost feel like someone turned on the Cartoon Network when you weren't looking. All in all, the graphics are one of the high spots.


The audio is adequate but Bubsy's voice doesn't quite fit. After a while, I found that his sayings—intended to be funny—combined with a voice that doesn't match, started to get a bit annoying.

Bottom Line:
Bubsy 3D had tremendous potential to give Crash Bandicoot a run for it's money. But the tedious controls took care of any chance of this being a great game. The graphics are neat and the worlds are vast and take some time to explore so the game is not bad. Once you get used to the controls, it is not quite as painful. I found myself getting into the game but doing something I didn't mean to once in a while because of the controls. One word of warning, if you have little ones that like to play this type of game, rent it first. They may become too frustrated with learning the controls and give up. So, is this the end of 2D games? Not yet. I think that 3D platform games will get there, but, for now, I'll stick to Rayman.

All contents © 1997 Gamezilla! a Game Point Magazine Production.