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Developer: Capcom OPTIONS: S.SHOT
No.1   No.2   No.3
Distributor: Capcom 1-2 Player
Game Type: Puzzle Memory Card
Review Date: April 1998  

Setting the Scene

Capcom has wisely dug into its coin-op library and unearthed several 
gems.  The 3 classic arcade series "Buster Bros." games have been 
slapped onto one disc and brought home to the Playstation game 

Grab hold of your weapon, whether it is a Vulcan missile launcher, 
wire gun or a power wire, find a friend and prepare to burst some 


Buster Bros. Collection is sort of a puzzle, action, shooting game all 
rolled into one.  While I would place it more in the puzzle category 
(even though there are no pieces to fit together), its non-stop action 
based theme clouds things a bit.


The graphics in Buster Bros. are indeed pretty dated.   It's 
interesting to watch the gradual progression that the graphics make 
through each game.

On the first game "Buster Bros." you have very simple, limited color 
sprite based characters moving about left and right on your screen. 
 Besides the different colored clothing, it's difficult to make out 
the difference in characters in the two-player mode and I often found 
myself looking and reacting to the wrong Buster Buddy!  The bubbles 
that you pop are standard fare, one color with a frozen reflection 
etched on the bubbles for effect.  At any rate, for it's time the 
graphics were considered pretty good, just dated by today's standards. 

The second game " Super Buster Bros." ups the color palette ante a 
bit, adds some splashy pre-rendered backgrounds and throws in some 
additional frames of character animation.  It's still hard to tell the 
difference between the two characters (besides the clothing color), 
but it's getting better.  The level designs are also more intricately 
presented as well.  All of these changes are rather subtle as game one 
and two bare very close resemblance to one another.

Game three, "Buster Buddies" takes the boldest move and implements 
polygon based characters that are animated wonderfully and are very 
easy to tell apart from each other in two-player mode.  The 
pre-rendered backgrounds return, but are now rare museum art paintings 
that are nicely depicted on the screen.  Basically the same game as 
one and two, just far better character graphics.

That's about it, not much detail to get into here, nice simple 
graphics that do the job, without the flash.

Sounds and Effects

Remember all of those endearing (but not so wonderful) squeak, beep, 
boing and squark (squark?!?) sounds from the 8-bit era?   Well get 
ready for a flashback, because Buster Buddies Collection is full of 
them.  It's kind of funny, but the sound effects actually work in very 
well with the overall retro feel of the game.  Break a bubble and you 
get a "pop" sound, shoot a gun and you get cap gun sounds.  Very 
simple, but just fine in this game.

The music gets progressively more complex as the series advances.  In 
the first game, the score is rather simple, by the third game you are 
treated to a full orchestral sounding accompaniment that streams 
throughout the game.


What you have here is basically a static screen in which your 
character can move left or right and occasionally climb obstacles. 
 The object of the game is to break all of the bubbles that decend on 
you from the top of the screen.  As you pop the bubbles, they break 
into progressively smaller ones, until they are finally wiped out and 
continue onto the next screen.  Get hit by a bubble as it falls and 
you lose a life.  Simple.

What makes this game so much fun is the frenzy that develops as you 
pop a bubble and it splits into two smaller, faster moving bubbles. 
 There are times when the screen is literally filled with bouncing 
bubbles and your character is dashing left to right trying to shot and 
avoid the erratic spheres.  As the pace accelerates, the music falls 
right into que and speeds up with the gameplay.  This gets your 
adrenaline pumping and your fingers moving furiously over the 
controller in an effort to avoid being hit.  At the end of a round, I 
often found myself hyper and totally pumped for the next screen to 

While three games differ slightly in their approach, the objective for 
each one is the same...pop those damn bubbles!

Game one places the Buster crew in a kingdom called Earth.  A 
tyrannical Bubble King has unleashed giant magical bubbles in an 
effort to control the denizens of this world.  It's up to the Buster 
Bros. To break all of the bubbles and thus defeat the evil King.

Game two has the Buster boys winging around the world to once again guessed it...the evil Bubble King.  In this game the 
levels are broken into multiple screens.  Complete the set amount of 
screens and move onto the next country location (or level).  A nifty 
little plane tracks your progress on a map at the end of each level. 
 Complete a block of levels and you get bonus points that lead to an 
extra life.  Super BB also contains a game called panic mode in which 
the object is to survive for as long as you can against an 
ever-increasing bombardment of bubbles.  Yikes!!

Game three adds a little twist and places you in the role of one of 
four selectable thieves that are out trying to pilfer the world's fine 
art and jewels.  Unfortunately the goodies you are trying to steal are 
protected guessed it...bubbles!  Gameplay is basically the 
same as the two previous games, but it just looks a whole lot nicer. 
 You also have a choice of four completely different looking 
characters, each with their own special skills.

Control of the characters is very responsive, but I found the movement 
to be a bit slow.  There are many times that you will need to 
anticipate the movement of a bouncing bubbles in order to allow you 
the time to move your character out of its way.  The game is 
absolutely intended to react that way, so it's not a flaw, just a bit 
slow for my tastes.  Controlling a character up some of the many 
obstacles can also be a chore, as proper placement of the little 
Buster crucial for success.

The two-player mode is absolutely the highlight of the game.  You and 
a friend control characters on the screen at the same time, running 
back and forth to break the bubbles.  The strategy you employ is your can choose to cooperate with a friend and rid the screen of 
its bubbles, or work against each other and to break the bubbles as 
they are traveling towards your opponent.  The pace in two-player mode 
get quite frantic and if played cooperatively, helps both parties to 
advance to the later levels much more easily.

There are a good number of weapons and items that are also collected 
by shooting at on screen platforms or blocks.  Break a block or 
platform and you may be rewarded with a wide dispersal laser gun that 
takes out handfuls of bubbles at a time or perhaps get a clock that 
will briefly freeze the motion of the bubbles, twin wire guns and a 
host of other stuff.

You will also occasionally have to deal with some on screen nasties 
that will temporarily render your weapons inoperable if they touch 
you.  You can of course always destroy them...There will also be some 
bubble-munching friends that appear at random intervals in the Super 
BB game.

All in all this is a very attractive little package that places 
gameplay above the usual eye and ear candy.  Whether or not that's a 
good, is for you to decide.

Buster Bros. Collection has an addictive nature that has stood the 
test of time.  In two-player mode

Value for Money

Although the package is rather dated, retro-gamers will want to take a 
look here.  You get three games on one disc that will provide a good 
time for one person and almost limitless gameplay in two-player mode.
GRAPHICS: 14/20 Buster Bros. Collection has an addictive nature that has stood the test of time. Gameplay is simple to pickup but challenging enough to hold your interest.

In one or two-player mode the action is non-stop and sets a frantic pace that will leave you breathless by games end. BBC offers a fun and relentless retro-gaming experience.
SOUND: 7/10
VALUE: 14/20

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