LAURENT KERMEL - Video Game Den : Super Famicom : SPARK WORLD )
SPARK WORLD
game Cover
game cartridge
スパーク ワールド
©ITC, Ins.
Release: 1995-05-26 (¥8500)
Cartridge SHVC-ADWJ
Action / Platform game


Spark World is an action game by Den'Z and reminiscent of Hudson Soft's all time classic Bomberman. In a fantasy world where cars have taken over the world, an evil cigar smoking mafia dealer spreads terror in his wake. Two courageous cars decide to stop the renegade vehicle and his army of criminals throughout the world. The story mode gets the player to start the game from any of nine areas. Each zone features three stages and a boss, and the goal of the game is rather simple - each stage must be carefully cleaned of all the depraved bad guys, or vehicles in this case. Our heroes' main weapon is a short range battery that fires lighting sparks in four directions at once. Like Bomberman's bombs, they only ignite after a handful of seconds. This feature is planted firmly at the heart of the gameplay and most of the game's strategy orbits around the placement and timing of the batteries to cause maximum damage. Following the Bomberman tradition, the game features power-up items hidden inside destructible blocks. Some expand the range of the lightning sparks, some increase the stock of available batteries whereas others give the player upgrades - these can get him to throw small bombs over the playfield or give him the ability to punch batteries or other vehicles. However, there are also bad items that give the player diseases for a short amount of time - there is a safe way out though and these sicknesses can be transferred to anyone the player touches. Unlike Bomberman, each player can be hit several times before failing a level, and super-powers are available for the taking (four of the nine zones feature mean black cars as bosses and killing them release special powers). Finally, any Bomberman clone wouldn't be complete without a battle mode and up to fire players can indeed blast each other up in frantic dead matches.
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Spark World manual
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I had a conversation going with my friend Steve from rvgfanatic.com about Bomberman clones and the name Spark World came out. Interestingly, the same day, I was fortunate enough to bump into a (relatively affordable) copy of the game which I immediately ordered. So here we are. Like Steve, I think Bombercar, hum sorry, Spark World, is a solid Bomberman wannabe - the game is packed with the attention to detail found in Hudson's masterpiece. Nothing really original here, most of the game is a straight copy/paste job from Bomberman but Den'Z/ITC have managed to do it right and the game has a lot of appeal. They even came up with some of their own ideas such as the colored sparks that give you a clue on who dropped the bomb! My only complaint would be that the gameplay is not as clear as Bomberman, corners are harder to negotiate and the extra bonuses (such as the bomb or the spark-laser) make the game a bit messier than Hudson's classic. But all in all, Spark World is a game I totally recommend to any fan of the genre.




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