arkthemaniac's Boom Blox (Wii) review

Boom Blox offers great gameplay for anyone, especially groups.

    I don't think anyone really thinks Steven Spielberg made this game, or even had a large role in making this game. It was probably more so that he helped to make the concept, and let the developers put his name on the box to bolster sales. A cheap move, really, putting someone's name on the box when they weren't all that involved. Oh wait, this is actually good. Really good. While some modes are bland, others are fantastic, and almost every game in the package uses the Wii remote well. I can safely say that this game, unlike most Wii party games, is only made possible by the Wii platform, and just wouldn't work on any other console.
    Boom Blox has fairly simple gameplay dictated to you through the title. You make blox go boom, but there's more to it than that. Some games have you shooting blox, others have you pulling blocks, and then theres the ones where you makes stuff go boom. All of the game's modes are available to you in the single player modes, set as goals to achieve. These generally involve either knocking over as many blocks as possible in just a move or two, keeping one block off of the ground as you dismantle the tower it sits on, and so on. You use the Wii remote to throw different types of balls at whatever is in your way. You do this by aiming at the screen to where you want to throw the ball, then pressing and holding A. You then go through the motion of throwing and let go of A when you would let go of the ball. It has great tactile feel and is, for the most part, completely functional. In your journey through boom blox, you will run into a variety of block types. There are Bomb Blox, that explode upon contact with the ball, Chemical Blox, that explode upon contact with each other, Vanishing Blox, which disappear when hit with the ball, and so on. The large variety of blocks makes for many possibilities in the levels provided, as well as in the Editor mode. More on that later.
    Single player is divided into story mode and challenge mode. Story mode is like a storybook,  with all the characters looking very cartooney, and all the text given in a nursery rhyme format. Challenge mode is more straightforward, as it cuts out the story and just has you doing challenges. How much fun you have generally boils down to the section you're in. While the bomb sections are great and the Jenga-style sections fantastic, the shooting sections are much less fun by comparison, and these become a chore to play. Progressing through the story mode awards you prizes and gadgets to use in Editor mode. Again, more on that later.
    The game's multiplayer aspects are much more fun and have more lasting value than single player. This is a party game, after all. There are many different modes to choose from, which keeps the overall experience fresher for longer. Get a group of people that really get into it and Boom Blox is one of the better party games yet made, standing out like a shining diamond amongst a sea of crap, like Deca Sports.
    For me, the level editor stole the show. Not only is it the best application for an editor I've seen in a game, but it's executed very well. If you're bored of the levels provided for you in the package, make some more. The most compelling part of it for me, though, is being able to make Rube Goldberg projects (like the board game Mouse Trap). There's a lot of options here. Get some creative people together with the drive to make something and you can come up with some really great stuff. The only issue I've had with it is that it seems as though the path changes for some things, making it so you have to tweak your device every time you open it.
    All in all, though, Boom Blox is a worthy addition to any game night, a good fit between having partial deafness from Rock Band and thumb arthritis from Smash Brothers. Much like these games, your enthusiasm makes everything all the more fun. There's a lot of fun to fun to have here.

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