Google+   Facebook button  Twitter button 
3DS | DS | PS3 | PS4 | PSP | VITA | WII | WIIU | X360 | XB1 | All

Rainbow Islands (NES) artwork

Rainbow Islands (NES) review


"A quick glance at Rainbow Islands and one could easily pass it off as a run-of-the-mill platformer, nothing out of the ordinary. However upon closer inspection the game lends itself to a higher train of thought, something with a little bit more substance. Indeed this harmless little title appears to be a heartfelt call by a software developing company who care about their planet, a cry for world peace! Itís not just about hoarding treasure and climbing level after level for personal benefit; a g..."



A quick glance at Rainbow Islands and one could easily pass it off as a run-of-the-mill platformer, nothing out of the ordinary. However upon closer inspection the game lends itself to a higher train of thought, something with a little bit more substance. Indeed this harmless little title appears to be a heartfelt call by a software developing company who care about their planet, a cry for world peace! Itís not just about hoarding treasure and climbing level after level for personal benefit; a greater need is out there, and Bubble Bobble 2: Rainbow Islands is just the first step.

The story of the game sees the natural habitat of our heroes, Bub and Bob, under threat. The nefarious Von Blubba has found the whereabouts of the secret paradise of our protagonists, and he has put its inhabitants under a bewitching spell. It is up to Bub and Bob to rescue their friends and rid the land of the evil that threatens to engulf it entirely. Twenty-eight stages lie in front of you gamer, spread your words of harmony throughout the land and claim what is rightfully yours!

One first gets the idea that there are underlying themes of worldwide righteousness when you see the chief weapon that our heroes brandish. They have the ability to produce rainbows, a multi-purpose tool that can be used to wipe out a gathering of foes or build a stepladder to a higher realm. These devices, well-recognized symbols of peace, are used to eliminate threats that are exactly the obvious. Bub and Bob will go face-to-face with military vehicles, the living dead, possessed toys and construction tools. A simple rainbow dispenses of all of these foes, as if to say that if we can remove all of the material possessions and items of conflict from our lives then they will surely flourish. These nemeses hunt in large packs and can swamp you at times, but Ocean obviously believe that their task is an achievable one.

Looking at the set-up of the games levels, one can get the same message. Theyíre a rag-tag collection of stages; made up entirely of platforms that youíre required to ascend. Youíll also have to use your rainbows to get up to the top, building a series of them and creating staircases for the sake of a meteoric rise. Every single level has us climbing up towards our goal in this fashion, a sure sign that we must build solid foundations out of happiness and friendship and reach for the stars if we wish to achieve a blissful existence.

There are certainly some distractions placed in our path on our way to liberating the land and achieving our goals. They generally come in the form of pick-ups, certain items that were meant to aid your ascension. Abilities such as increased leg-speed, and the ability to string two or more rainbows together sound appealing, but when put into effect they become cumbersome and will do nothing but hinder your progress. I consider this a sure sign that we must focus entirely on the task at hand, for if we dwindle too long on such matters a flood of water will begin to creep up from the bottom of the screen and, ultimately, swallow us entirely.

Thatís it really, a simple game with a strong message. Bosses pop up at the end of each fourth stage, tricky little blighters that take a concerted effort to defeat. In actual fact, the entire game after level eight can be a worrisome affair. A whole lot of continues have been thrown your way to lighten the burden, but itís never going to be an easy affair sue to the sheer weight of numbers held by the enemies. Achieving enlightenment was never meant to be easy, and itís sad to say that the challenge presented in this case will do nothing but the opposite. The baddies will do nothing but try to darken your mood!

To balance out these feelings of hopelessness and despair the game treats you to a bright and cheery design package. The graphics express well the journey you make through the eight individual Rainbow Islands, and very rarely do they take on a form that isnít blindingly colourful. However the colours do not take the attention away from the simplicity of the looks, with basic looking (and rather small) enemies being flung up against some rudimentary backgrounds. A greater attention to detail would have been nice, but with the on-screen action setting such a cracking pace the regurgitated visuals are going to be the least of your problems. Complementing the cheery colour scheme is an upbeat soundtrack. Unfortunately for most of the game youíll just hear the one jaunty little number, and its appeal wears off quite quickly. There is too little variety in either of the categories to really impress. They do win points for creating an optimistic, almost jovial mood however.

Overall, Iím afraid that Rainbow Islands really doesnít have that much to offer. Itís a nice little distraction from more worthy titles, and its cause is a truly noble one, but the squeaky clean motives of the developers just arenít backed up well enough. Itís a must for activists; the stark political message of the game will go down a treat with the do-good sort. But Iím afraid Iím going to have to recommend that the rest of you deal this title nothing more than a passing glance, itís just not going to be able to hold your attention for anything longer.

Rating: 4/10

kingbroccoli's avatar
Community review by kingbroccoli (April 25, 2004)

A bio for this contributor is currently unavailable, but check back soon to see if that changes. If you are the author of this review, you can update your bio from the Settings page.

More Reviews by kingbroccoli
Final Fantasy X (PlayStation 2) artwork
Final Fantasy X (PlayStation 2)

Final Fantasy X reached down a mighty, benevolent hand and pulled a faltering series from the tepid water in which it was drowning. Years of terrible indiscretions were forgotten in an instant, as the epic quest of Tidus and Yuna banished former Final Fantasy failures to the backs of minds everywhere. Earlier instalmen...
Mike Tyson's Punch-Out! (NES) artwork
Mike Tyson's Punch-Out! (NES)

Most gaming protagonists do not need our help, for they have been blessed with the skills, weapons, physique and mentality to win at all costs. They strut about the screen, preening and flexing and sneering dismissively at all who dare inhabit their personal space. Look at these heroes! Solid Snakeís only true obstacle...
NHL '98 (PlayStation) artwork
NHL '98 (PlayStation)

There comes a time in every reviewers life when he has to defy common sense, shut down a large portion of his brain and dive into the neon trash-can that is franchise sports. EA Sports is generally the main offender, churning out the same mindless rubbish year after year, and it just so happens that they are behind the...

Feedback

If you enjoyed this Rainbow Islands review, you're encouraged to discuss it with the author and with other members of the site's community. If you don't already have an HonestGamers account, you can sign up for one in a snap. Thank you for reading!

You must be signed into an HonestGamers user account to leave feedback on this review.

Info | Help | Privacy Policy | Contact | Advertise | Links

eXTReMe Tracker
© 1998-2014 HonestGamers
None of the material contained within this site may be reproduced in any conceivable fashion without permission from the author(s) of said material. This site is not sponsored or endorsed by Nintendo, Sega, Sony, Microsoft, or any other such party. Rainbow Islands is a registered trademark of its copyright holder. This site makes no claim to Rainbow Islands, its characters, screenshots, artwork, music, or any intellectual property contained within. Opinions expressed on this site do not necessarily represent the opinion of site staff or sponsors.