Since one of our first reviews on our “best games” column on this site was the original Boulder Dash we would be hard pressed not to bring you all the details of the latest (and greatest) Boulder Dash XL which recently released on XBLA last Wednesday, July 13th alongside Ms. Splosion Man.
The latest edition of the adventures of Rockford, (and Crystal his cat like friend), includes an update to the entire graphics engine of course, so they’ve polished everything into a very crisp and interesting 3D worldspace even though it’s still a sidescrolling area. The look is appealing and the game is still just as much fun. There are similarities in Boulder Dash XL and the latest Android or Blackberry versions which means you constantly get new surprises every so many levels.
Teleporting doors, oddball creatures and monsters, special abilities, health packs and the like. This was the improvement concept added to the mobile app versions that in our opinion made Boulder Dash feel a bit less, however to a new gamer never seeing the original, it would seem pretty straightforward and possibliy appreciated which is probably why it’s been included in Boulder Dash XL.
At a price point of only $20, (or 800 XBLA points), if this was all the game had to offer, it would still be a worthy purchase, but luckily the devs were smart enough to include “Retro Mode” which allows you to play the original version somewhat.
What we mean is the retro version is still kind of 3D-ized slightly. The sounds and graphics are intentionally 8-bit but not that of the original. It’s close enough though, and appeases those in need of the original when purchasing this version. If there’s something to recall about the original Boulder Dash it was the random clinking and precious tinkling of the diamonds as they’d fall. This is the one wish we’d hope would be updated and included if they have time before the PC port later this summer.
Additionally having an unlock of the initial 1984 version as a bonus would of course be extremely appreciated for all of us die hard Boulder Dash fans…. First Star Software needs to know that there are 40 something gamers out here that remember the addictive original.
- Who is the DLC winner of the week, PS3 XBox 360 or Wii? (videogames.gameguidedog.com)
- XBLA in Brief: Boulder Dash-XL (joystiq.com)