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Kuru Kuru Kururin Review - GBA

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Have you heard of this game before? Probably not. After all, it doesn't sound nearly as cool as Grand Theft Auto 3 or Soul Calibur. No doubt you've guessed it's a Japanese game. But did you know it was made by Nintendo and Eighting? Everyone knows Nintendo, but Eighting is a bit of an unknown to western gamers. So can Eighting produce the goods to the western world with Kuru Kuru Kururin?

Gameplay

You're a helicopter. Right, simple enough. But you look like a slowly rotating paddle pop stick. You slowly rotate as you maneuver your way through the games various maze like levels. If you touch the sides, you take damage. If you get hit three times, you crash. Simple concept. But then, so is Tetris, and yet, we all know how that turned out, don't we? There are various little tricks involved in the game, such as springs that change the direction of your rotation, pads that recharge your damaged craft, as well as little collectables that change your helicopters appearance.

The story, as if any puzzle game needed a story is somewhat Japanese, and in typical Japanese style, it's quirky. You see, the main character, Kururin, that's you, in the title role, is the son of a bird. Your one of a large family of birds, and it seems all your brothers and sisters have gone missing, so it's up to you to travel around the various themed game worlds to try and find them and send them home to mummy-bird safe and sound. It doesn't make much sense, I mean, why does a bird need to fly a slowly rotating helicopter to try and find his lost siblings? Surely flying around on his own, without the somewhat cumbersome 'chopper would be a better and far safer alternative? Well, it's safe to say that it doesn't make much sense, but it doesn't have to, as puzzle games are the purist form of game play over all else. If a puzzle game doesn't have game play, it's not likely that its stellar graphics or convoluted storyline are going to save it.

Fear not, as it's safe to say that the game play is solid though, not to everyone's taste. As it's not really a popular title, you should be able to find it in a sale at a game store. Try your big chains and specialty game stores as little retailers will probably not have taken a chance with an unknown title and developer.

Graphics & Sound

Graphics and sound are admittedly not the strong points of most puzzle games. And this game is no exception. But that's not to say the graphics are bad. As a matter of fact they're quite good, but not exactly a technical showcase. The rotating effects seen are excellent and stable. The backgrounds are colorful and detailed, but not in a distracting way, causing your little bird pilot to crash and burn. Menus are easy to navigate, and have their own distinct charm.

The ... (continued next page)