ChuChu Rocket Review

ChuChu til you die.


Imagine you're a mouse, not just any mouse, but an insane swollen-eared galactic cheese-eating, rocket-saddling madrunnin' moon rodent. Yeah, I know, it sounds like I've been watching the Disney channel again while puffin sweet chiba, but that's not the case. This is the story of the ChuChus, a race of moon mice conceived by some sick and twisted Japanese game designers. These kings of insanity have brought us the story of a world run by KapuKapus, a race of not-your-average housecats, bent on consuming all of the ChuChu mice before they make their escape on Tim-Burtonesque rockets. Sweet. Simple premise, eh? Put the mice on the goddamn ship without being eaten. Ha, not that easy chum, it's take more than Whiskas to subdue these Clownshoes, you've got to use whit and all that other crap that the Karate Kid movies talk about to trick these felines into killing themselves, or at least give them the runaround.

Game Statistics

  • 25 puzzle levels, 2500 tournament levels.
  • 25 stages of single player, but you can skirmish with the CPU in tournament mode.
  • 1-4 player modes.
  • 32 megabit cartridge.

Game Design
First look at this game makes you want to go to the store and trade it in for NSync CD's (and no, I don't listen to NSync). The screen is riddled with fruity colours, and animal drawings so ghetto, they look like some 4-year-old Sailor Moon wannabe crafted them using crayons. However, with this said, I urge you not to be fooled. I think that all of the fruitiness was just a cover up for the massively intense gameplay that is in store. Or the creators are just peanut-brained monkey-spankers. Either way, this is the point of fact: ChuChu Rocket is hands down the most addictive GBA game I have played to date. The game packs a punch that will send you running home to mamma, clutching your throbbing ass the whole way home.

When the tournament boots up, you start with a dozen ChuChus running out of their "Spaceport", running in a straight line in search of their rocketship. Just like in lemmings, you, the all-knowing, all-powerful God must guide them without them dying. Except, you don't get hammers, you don't get shovels, you don't get explosives, you get something better; arrows. Yes, my friend, arrows that can point in any of the 2D directions, totalling 4. However, you can only put 3 arrows on the map at a time, figures. Now, to make it harder, your opponents are trying to get the same mice into their ships, so it's a battle to see who can throw down the arrows in the right places before someone else takes it, or else you have to direct the mouse around their arrows. Hard enough? How about we add some damn cats. Now listen, I'm not a cat person, but the sick and twisted freak that conceived this game obviously is, so he lets cats lose on the map to eat your mice up. To make it worse, if the cat follows your arrows to your ship, he will go onboard and eat some of your mice. Now, the more mice he eats, the bigger he gets. The bigger he gets the more damage he does when he gets to your ship. Sort of like Roseanne at an all-you-can-eat buffet (you just love those Roseanne allusions, don't you?). To add to that, there are special mice that cause random events to happen, such as making hundreds of mice appear on the board, or hundreds of cats. I think you can understand how this can be very good, or it can make you shatter your GBA against the nearest hard surface.

Ok, so I have some beef with the fruitiness, but what can I say, they had to give it a cute image to make the game marketable to a nation of post-Tamagotchi hello-kitty fanboys. With that aside, the animation is very fluid and pleasing to watch. Nothing looks neater than a fat cat waltzing around the screen making little twinkly halos above all of your mice.

Excellent. The music is, I must say, above average, it gives the game much more substance, and it indicates the situation very well, whether it is the current game speed, or danger lurking around. The sounds of the ChuChus make me reminiscent of the days when I still left the sounds on ICQ on. Then I got so enraged by the sound of multiple messages that I canned those wav files into my Recycle Bin.

Any idiot can basically play this. They have no excuse for losing except their low IQ. All you have to do is lay down arrows, how hard is that? That is all, lay down the arrows, got it? If even THAT sounds hard, they give you 3 different ways to lay down arrows. You can use the directional pad, you can use the A button, you can cycle through the arrows using the L and R, whatever you want.

Please, what is more satisfying than knowing you've helped a group of ChuChus reach orbit before being dismembered by fat cats? The fact that the game has an almost unlimited amount of tournament stages, as well as the ability to draw your own ChuChus and KapuKapus using the in-game paint program (I'm serious), will keep anyone entertained for a lengthy time span.

Replay Value/Game Length
Once again, if you finish this game, email me and I will personally congratulate you. Then I will promptly add your email address to my Block List. By the time anyone finishes this game, Al Gore will be president.

A good game. But beware, it is addictive. Most of the fun is in playing your friends through a link cable, and it only requires one cartridge. You can even share the characters you've drawn, and the maps you've designed. Check this one out, you might like it. That is, if puzzle games are your thing.

Game Design 8.0
 Mechanics 7.5
 Innovation 8.5
 Originality 7.4
 Extras 9.0
 Depth 7.5
Graphics 8.5
 Character/Animation 8.5
 Environment 7.0
 Framerate 9.9
Sound 9.1
 Music 9.5
 Sound FX/Voice 8.7
Control 8.7
 During Play 9.0
 Menus 9.0
 Functionality 8.0
Satisfaction 8.6
 Challenge 8.5
 Fun-Factor 8.7
Replay Value/Game Length 8.5
Multiplayer 9.3

Review by Cheezdip

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