March 27, 2011

Bakugan: Battle Brawlers

I have to open this post by saying that I picked this game up for a steal price. While walking through my local Wal-Mart this weekend I saw in the PS3 section that Bakugan Battle Brawlers on PS3 was sitting in the case with a $1 price tag on it. I know, I thought it was a typo too. I was expecting it to ring in for $10 and figured something went wrong with the printing. Turns out though that it scanned in for $1!!!!!!

Now that I have gotten that part out of my system.....I have had the chance to spend a couple of days playing this game now. My first reactions to it as someone who has not had the time to watch the series yet, great game! There is not too complicated of a learning curve when playing Bakugan Batte Brawlers. In terms of complexity, it is very much reminiscent to Yu-Gi-Oh! Forbidden Memories on PSX.
Essentially the objective of the game is to win Bakugan battles by throwing your Bakugan into the arena and trying to get it to land on cards placed face down known as Gate Cards. The person who collects three Gate Cards through the battle wins. Gate Cards can be won in one of two ways, either you land two of your Bakugan Cores on the same card, or you and one of your opponents throw a Bakugan Core onto the same card and then the monsters inside the core battle.
An interesting element to this game is the need to use power up cards in order to increase G-Power for battles. This adds a large strategy element to the game and doesn't always play into the favor Bakugan who have higher G-Power base stats. G-Power can be obtained through small mini-game challenges before the battle giving weaker Bakugan an advantage. Mini-games are randomly selected (unless specific game cards are used) between 1) Controller shaking challenge; 2)Timing challenge; and 3) Shooting challenge.
Something that I found helped to keep the game interesting was the ability to have 1 on 1; 2 on 2; and battle royal style battles in this game. This obviously creates the opportunity to play this game with 4 players. When playing these modes with the computer, I dind't find the AI to be ridiculously easy or too hard, although I imaging that once I have had some more time to become better acquainted with this game the AI will start to bore me.
The shop aspect of the game gives some incentive for replay of matches. By winning points your world ranking increases, as does your cash flow. Having more cash allows you to buy Bakugan and cards, increasing the customization options for your deck. Each elemental property has the same Bakugan to choose from. A big part of what makes the game interesting is how you choose to employ elemental combinations. Your character is also customizable in appearance creating another element of personal connectedness to the game for some.

My overall verdict of this game is that for $1 is was definitely worth it. I would have been willing to pay the $18 that it was listed for previously. Bakugan Battle Brawlers has peaked my interest to the anime series as well as to the newer Bakugan Defenders of the Core game.