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Virtual Console Mondays: May 7, 2007

Mighty Bomb Jack

by David Trammell - May 7, 2007, 4:23 pm PDT

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Mighty Bomb Jack (MBJ) is just a little too hard to control and lacks depth. The gameplay is basically about avoiding enemies by moving, jumping and floating while moving toward the nearest exit. The jumping controls are unintuitive. A single tap sends Bomb Jack soaring, another tap stops his ascent, and additional taps cause him to float slowly downward. Each level is filled with power-ups and unlit bombs (points). At the end of each level, you'll find a "bomb room" where you have to collect a number of bombs to open the exit while avoiding monsters. You can also perform a rather difficult trick to use the bomb rooms to warp through the game, but there are no other tricks or codes. You have 3 lives and no continues.

To give you a better idea of where MBJ is coming from, if you collect more than 9 Mighty Coins (a useful power-up), you're sent to the "torture room" where you're forced to jump a number of times while avoiding enemies to have your current life spared. If you manage to survive, you go back to the beginning of the level you were on minus the coins. Anyone who fondly recalls this game knows what they're getting into, but in general, I can't recommend MBJ. It's really a poorly conceived action-adventure version of the original arcade Bomb Jack, which only featured the bomb rooms. If you're looking for a unique, Tecmo classic that's really worth playing, try Solomon's Key instead.

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