Giant Bomb Review100 Comments
by Jeff Gerstmann on
Jungler's mix of shooting, snakes, and mazes gives you just enough variety to make Game Room's challenge system worthwhile.
Konami's Jungler is part maze game and part shooter, like some sort of weird mix of Exidy's Targ, Pac-Man, and Atari's Surround. But I'll stop loading you down with dumb references to other games you've probably never heard of. That's the key thing about Jungler: you've probably never seen it before. In a world where the same 25 arcade "classics" get released every few years, it's nice to have a little fresh blood on the scene. Microsoft's Game Room has set the stage for Jungler to see a fresh, digital release and it's a decent addition.
Jungler has its moments, but it's definitely not terrific. You play as a snake-looking "ship" that moves around a maze. There are up to four other snake/ships in the maze, as well, and you can fire shots at the enemy ships' tails to reduce their size. If a snake is smaller than yours, it turns green and can be eaten. If it's red, a head-to-head collision will kill you. You'll get the most points by shooting down the enemy snakes until there's nothing left, rather than eating them once they're short enough. Fruit occasionally appears in the maze, as well, which adds a segment to your snake when eaten. Once you've cleared enough snakes, the level ends and the game moves forward to the next level. There are multiple mazes.
Jungler fits into the Game Room challenge and leaderboard system pretty well. Like most arcade games of its era, it's a very score-focused game, and it gets tough after a few levels, giving you plenty of opportunities to set up late-game survival challenges that are actually challenging. But the simplistic nature of the game--and I'm talking about its simplicity compared to other Game Room releases here--makes it fall flat a little sooner than some of the other available games.
If you've managed to start a cult of hardcore Jungalos and you know you'll get a lot of hot and heavy challenge action out of them, Jungler's definitely worthwhile. But on its own, the game's appeal can be pretty short-lived.