Puyo Pop Fever
Developer: Sega (Sonic Team)
Publisher: THQ
Release Date: Out Now
Players: 1
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SEGA's Puyo Pop puzzle game has been on many platforms over the years, and this new addition to the series is no different – it even came out on Dreamcast in Japan in 2004! European Gameboy Advance owners can now enjoy it too, and it’s damn good.

The idea behind Puyo Pop is that you have to align falling coloured circles (Puyos) into groups of more than four, horizontally or vertically. When you have matched up this, the coloured Puyos vanish off your side, and fill up a gauge on your opponent’s side. The game screen is split into two, with player 1 on the left, and the cpu/player 2 on the right. Once you have filled up the gauge on your opponent’s screen, a load of clear, “dead” Puyos will drop into their section, thus filling their side up. If you fill the screen up with Puyos its game over. The clear Puyos can’t be removed by conventional methods, but if you wipe a coloured section out, any clear Puyos touching them will vanish too.

   

If you see your gauge filling up, you can erase them by getting rid of some Puyos on your side. This will drop your gauge down, and if you get rid of enough Puyo at once, you can fill up some of your opponents gauge at the same time.

The Fever part of the game is when you fill up a secondary gauge onscreen, if you do this you enter “Fever!” mode. Here, there are loads of preset Puyo already in your screen, and you have to set them off by aligning the dropping Puyo into the right place. If you do, you will set off a huge combo, which of course all go towards filling up your opponents gauge.

As well as the superb single player mode (which gets hard very quickly), there are also various multiplayer modes when you link-up up to four GBA systems. You can even do it through one copy of game so you don’t all have to own a copy.

   

The graphics are of course very simple, but they are really nice and bright – well they are through a Nintendo DS screen anyway. On a GBA they are much more washed out, but that’s not the games fault. Music is cool too, with typical Japanese tunes, that sounds good through headphones.

Puyo Pop has always been a brilliantly playable and enjoyable puzzle game, and this latest addition to the series is no different. It does get incredibly hard at times, and can be frustrating too, but that’s what puzzle games are supposed to do. Is it as good as hundreds of other puzzle games out there on Gameboy Advance? I think so, and is definitely worth picking up if you’re after a new title for your Gameboy.


Best Bits

- Plays as well as ever.
- Perfectly suited to GBA.
- 1 cart link-up is a great bonus.

Worst Bits

- It ain’t easy.
- That ribbiting frog!
- Best played on a Nintendo DS.


by: DC

Copyright © Gamecell 2004