Bust-A-Move Universe

bust-a-move universe box art review
5.0 Overall Score
Graphics: 6/10
Sound: 5/10
Controls: 6/10

Quick puzzle game

Doesn't do enough to improve on previous formats, too short

Game Info

Game Name:  Bust-A-Move Universe

Developer(s):  Akira

Publisher(s):  Square Enix

Platform(s):  Nintendo 3DS

Genre(s):  Strategy

Release Date(s):  February 26, 2011 (Japan)/Marche 27, 2011 (US)

ESRB Rating:  E

bust-a-move universe cut scene art bub bob prisoner

Your friend is trapped…can you Bust-A-Move to free him (obligatory use of Bust-A-Move)

Bub and Bob are at it again.  As they travel the worlds, they must use bubbles to break free their allies and stop enemies as they arise.  The puzzles are getting tougher and the bubbles are flying faster.  Bub and Bob must Bust-a-Move!

Bust-A-Move Universe (Tobidasu!  Puzzle Bobble 3D) is a Arika developed game published by Square Enix for the Nintendo 3DS.  The game was intended as a launch title for the 3DS but missed its U.S. release date.  It received mixed to negative reviews.

I loved the original Bust-A-Move game.  I was working at a place where they had the arcade game and often spent breaks playing it.  It was fun, fast, and a good puzzle game.  I actually was a big fan of the original Bubble Bobble as well, and puzzles plus Bubble Bobble make complete sense…unfortunately, this game falls flat.

bust-a-move universe gameplay adventure

Bust Bubbles = Free Friends

The game features a couple types of play mode.  There is the challenge mode with Bub and Bob travelling to different planets and facing increasingly difficult panels of bubbles to get popped.  This starts out fine.  It is rather easy to begin with and the addition of “super bubbles” help get you out of sticky situations.  As you progress, it does get harder…but it never gets really hard.  I kept expecting more and more levels to pop up and then the adventure was over with little challenge (especially if you use the super-bubbles).

The second type of game is time and speed based.  It is more akin to the original Bust-A-Move.  Like the game however, it just misses that extra push it needs to become a fun game.  It is a good time passer and can be played while watching TV or doing other things, but it really doesn’t have the fun or pressure of something like Tetris.

bust-a-move universe gameplay moon 3ds

It gets harder…but not that hard

The 3D for the game is actually pretty good.   It isn’t as glitchy as some of the other 3DS titles and the style of the game doesn’t make it feel gimmicky.  It is a good fit for 3DS.

Bust-A-Move Universe probably isn’t worth purchasing, but you can generally find it for cheap (I got it for under $5).  In that sense, it is worth it.  It can be played for a bit and then put down.  If you have other versions of Bust-A-Move, this brings nothing new to the table…just stick with what you have and keep busting bubbles.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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