Source // YouTube

Hands up if you're surprised that Bomberman made the list. How dare you put your hand up, of course Bomberman would make the list. There have been more Bomberman titles than I ever imagined, and the first of two to make the 1001 list is the TurboGrafx-16 title that introduced multiplayer to the game - and that changed everything, didn't it?

Source // Retro Garden

Fond Memories

I've played a lot of Super Bomberman. There were really only three games in rotation on my cousins' SNES, and they were Super Bomberman, Super Mario Kart and Mortal Kombat. You can spot the theme I'm sure - magical multiplayer moments.

The music, the colours, the frantic panic of planting a bomb in the wrong place and having to wait for it to explode and lead to your demise. Super Bomberman was a joy, but it only became a joy because of the groundwork put in by an earlier Bomberman.

Fun Times

As far as I'm concerned, there is no single player mode in any Bomberman title, but imagine there is (not too difficult when it's watchable in its entirety above) and imagine that's all you've got. Black Bomberman has kidnapped the daughter of the inventor of both White and Black Bomberman (stay with me here), imprisoning her in a castle some fifty levels away from you.

Completely ignoring any plot, a single-player Bomberman It wouldn't be too bad as you plopped down your bombs blowing up both brick walls and bizarre creatures in search for the exit tile, hidden somewhere in the level. Every now and then, there are no bricks, and there exists instead a boss battle worthy of quick thinking and smart bomb placement, just to mix things up a little before you head back to the basics of blowing up brick walls.

With power-ups greatly improving your abilities, those of both you and your bombs, you can dance through levels leaving a fiery trail behind you, and you'd have a good time.

But it wouldn't be anywhere near as good as multiplayer Bomberman, would it?

The thrill of going up against a human opponent is unmatched by single-player endeavours, so imagine going up against two, or three, or four - Bomberman here went one better than Super Bomberman. The SNES title may have been the first four player game on the SNES, but the TurboGrafx-16 could offer five players all the fun they could have asked for from a game.

It's so simple. Walk, place bomb, don't stand near it or you die. The grid-based arenas allow for players to carefully count out the range of their bombs in order to really show off how skilled they were, but even if you just managed to trap your target between a bomb and a hard place, you would be loving every second of the round.

Source // YouTube

Final Word

While I'm left to watch this particular version, it is clearly so familiar to me that I think I can get away with saying how good it is. There aren't too many controls to get confused by or mechanics to memorise, and yet there are some strategies and tactics to be found and used, both in single player and multiplayer modes.

It could get a little samey, in time, but in short explosive bursts, you simply can't avoid Bomberman - any version of it.

Probably. I've not played them all to know for sure.

Fun Facts

Where do all the bombs come from? They're generated in Bomberman's hands, obviously.

Bomberman, developed by Hudson Soft, first released in 1990.
Version watched: PC Engine/TurboGrafx-16, 1990 (World of Longplays)