The egg might have come before the chicken, but the chicken has bombs.
In the latest release from developer Nitrome, players will embark on a 2D puzzle-platform adventure and take control of an unlikely hero: a chicken that lays bombs. Though it might sound odd at first, this combination is the start of a deeply enjoyable title that offers players a unique experience. With many levels to complete and plenty of explosive puzzle solving, Bomb Chicken has a solid premise, but does it deliver?
Some might argue that a videogame that only really features one core gameplay mechanic is a lacklustre experience. On the contrary, it presents an opportunity to refine that idea into a well-polished and robust gameplay system that is highly rewarding. You see, with the tap of a button your chicken will lay a bomb that will explode after a moment. This damages enemies, opens pathways, pushes switches, and can even be stacked to reach high places, to name a few of the possibilities. Mastering each of these gives great satisfaction as you flawlessly execute levels with prefect movements and bomb placement to effortless glide through to the next challenge.
This level of flexibility within a single gameplay mechanic is a testament to the effective design work that the developers have put into the title. Utilizing a single object in numerous ways without ever overcomplicating it also helps to make Bomb Chicken accessible to many players as well. This is further helped by the fact the only real controls are those to move the chicken from left to right and to lay a bomb.
None of this means that Bomb Chicken is easy, mind you. As the many levels you will progress through do offer a serious challenge that will require quick thinking and faster reflexes to clear them flawlessly. Thankfully, failure is not overly punishing with each death causing you to lose a heart – with more hearts available to unlock through collectable gems – that once all gone, will see you faced with a game over screen. What happens then? You jump right back in. Trial and error is a part of the experience but you’ll never find yourself walking away in frustration.
The presentation of the title is a further tick in the right boxes as the stunning pixel artwork never fails to capture your attention. For a character that is a chicken, the team at Nitrome have been able to give it so much personality. Small animations and hidden details within the levels bring so much to Bomb Chicken without ever distraction from the gameplay experience. These details show just how much work has gone into ensuring the title is the best it can be and that is matched by the faultless performance throughout the title.
So at the end of the day where does Bomb Chicken stand? Honestly, it is a gem of a title. Simple, effective, and engaging gameplay make this adventure completely worth your time. A few tiny bumps with some of the collisions on stage obstacle but they never remove the moment. If you want to enjoy the grand journey of a bomb laying chicken then look no further than the puzzle-platformer fun that is Bomb Chicken.