Do the words “platform game” mean anything to you? Of course they do because since the early Eighties every home computer and console that has ever seen the light of day has been force-fed a diet of these types of games. Things have moved on ever so slightly since then (although the dreaded “please wait, game is loading” screen seems to have made somewhat of a resurgence), we now get fancy FMV intros, pseudo 3-D in-game graphics and 32-bit speed and fluidity. Oh yeah, and we also get Bubsy 3D.
Bobcat or Topcat
Due to the fact that there is no other game out on the PlayStation that can claim to be a truly inter-dimensional affair (yeah yeah, I can hear the shouts of Sir Crash of Bandicoot, but isn’t that really only a tarted up 2-D engine hiding behind a 3-D premise?) Bubsy 3D nips in and steals the 3-D crown. What Bubsy does is place the player in 16 levels of total 3-D environment that can be panned around the full 360° limits of the playing area. Basically, this means that you get full freedom of movement and a strange uneasy feeling of vertigo. Let Crash have a go at emulating that.
Lager, Lager, Lager
The game is played out over a modeled polygonal landscape that not only features mountain ranges and plateaus, but also platforms in the sky. Look up into the lunar firmament and you’ll see a multitude of intricately designed walkways that are all geared towards taking you to new heights. Switches, enemies, secret levels and a whole host of other platform staples are all there but, when combined with the super-slick 3-D engine, it somehow seems a lot more, er, real. You’ve still got to jump onto the enemy beings’ heads but there is also more of a puzzle element to this game that most of its contemporaries. Oh yes, and did I mention that there is a two player mode? Get a mate around and one of you can have a go at controlling the bobcat while the other takes potshots at him and tries to snuff out some of his nine lives. It takes a little getting used to, but once you’ve sussed it it’s great fun. Bubsy 3D may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but younger players will be enthralled by its bright colours and simple gameplay, even if adults reach straight for the sick bucket.