Sep 6, 2011
Bloo Kid’s girlfriend has been kidnapped by an evil wizard, or so the story goes in this retro-styled platform game. You’ll have to survive through 60 levels of running, jumping and monster stomping if you hope to get her back. The gameplay is simple, but the challenge hits on multiple levels as you attempt to fulfill the requirements of completing each level to perfection.
Bloo Kid is a lot like the arcade version of Mario Bros. There is no grand, sweeping adventure, and no power-ups. You aren’t exploring vast levels for hidden items or ducking into underground realms, you’re just trying to stomp all the monsters in a level before heading to the next one.
At the end of each level, your performance is evaluated. The ultimate goal is to collect 3 stars on each level. You do this by defeating all the enemies and catching a special star at the end of each level without getting hurt. However, you only need to defeat all the enemies on a level to pass it, which includes defeating the boss at the end of each world before getting a cutscene that furthers the story.
Aside from the star collecting, finishing a level really comes down to surviving the wave of enemies. There’s a specific number of enemies in each level, and you get a handy counter to let you know how many more you need to dispatch. There’s a puzzle element to each level as you try to memorize and anticipate the behavioral patterns of enemies and places they materialize. It’s a good thing that lives are infinite, because you’ll be dying plenty of times. Also, there’s no time limit, giving you plenty of time see how each level works as you formulate a plan to finish a level.
All of the action takes place on one screen; there’s no side-scrolling, climbing or exploring to do. The set-pieces, challenges and enemies constantly change, but the action only ever takes place on that one screen. At the end of each world lies a boss fight that changes things up. The same basic gameplay mechanic applies, and the challenges to grab all three stars are still there, but you’re facing a significantly larger enemy that requires multiple hits to take out. After successfully knocking the boss down, you end up on another world in a new setting, new set pieces and enemy types. It’s these small changes that help keep the game from becoming tiresome.
If you like the exploring and adventuring aspects of some platformers, the lack of such in Bloo Kid might come as a deal-breaker. However, if you’re more appreciative of the core mechanics of a platformer and enjoy the challenge of fighting multiple enemies while memorizing their movements and behaviors, Bloo Kid could easily provide a few hours of entertainment. With plenty of arcade action and retro-styling, it’s a good looking, entertaining game that should keep you on your toes. Bloo Kid is ad-supported, but the ads are non-intrusive and only appear on the menu/title screen.