Sequel to the Game Boy Color titles, Bomberman Max 2 is also available in two versions: Blue and Red. Playing as either Bomberman (Blue version) or Max (Red version), players must once again battle the infamous Hige Hige bandits who have shrunk Bomberman and Max to the size of ants using their secret "Mini Mini" device. In order to return to their normal size, Bomberman and Max must drop bombs, complete puzzles, and destroy the devious shrinking device of their adversaries. Throughout the game, players collect, raise, and breed Charabom characters, then battle them against one another by utilizing the Link Cable.
--From the GBA Bomberman Max 2 Red Advance instruction manual.
"Bomberman Max 2 Red Advance" is identical to "Bomberman Max 2 Blue Advance", except that the player controls the Max character as opposed to Bomberman, and a few of the later levels are different than Blue version. Because the graphics, mechanics, story, engine, and items are all identical, I thought it prudent to replicate my review of the Blue version, as my perspective on the two games (and the games themselves) is identical. I have changed the referenced game to "Red Advance" in this review to prevent confusion.
The universally loved Bomberman finally makes his appearance on the Gameboy Advance console in "Bomberman Max 2 Red Advance". Gamers familiar with the previous editions of Bomberman will find themselves right at home as they navigate 100 puzzle stages with the aid of the new Charabom characters, monsters that Max rides and can use to execute special powers.
Max has been shrunk and must complete the stages if he ever hopes to return to his previous stature. The player navigates Max through puzzle like stages, using his bombs to clear obstructions (and enemies), and pass to the next stage. I remember playing "Bomberman" for the original NES, it was one of my favorite games ever. "Bomberman Max 2 Red Advance" departs from the original by focusing the game experience on a single player puzzle campaign as opposed to the multi-player battles of old. The shift was perfect for the Gameboy Advance system. The gameplay still feels like a typical "Bomberman" title, featuring simple but effective game mechanics presented in an approachable design.
The addition of the Charabom characters and a plethora of items deepen the game experience, and compel players to use some strategy. All of the Charaboms have different abilities that can be utilized at any point of the stage. The graphics are likely to blow players away with rich, bright colors, and exceptionally crisp levels. The music and sound effects are catchy and help pull the player into the gaming experience. "Bomberman Max 2 Red Advance" will satisfy fans of the franchise, and those who have yet to be introduced to the Bomberman series.
Max must complete 100 stages to return to normal size. Before a stage begins, Max will be given specific goals for the stage, goals can be viewed at anytime on the pause screen. Each stage has a time limit.
One hit by an enemy will end the stage attempt and cost Max a life. Max starts each stage with three lives. Max will sometimes be assisted by friends on stages.
Max must use his bombs to clear enemies and obstructions from the stages. Many obstructions will yield items when destroyed.
Fire - increase bomb power by 1 tile
+Bomb - increase the number of bombs that can be placed on a stage at one time
Blue skater - increase movement speed by 1
Wood slippers - decrease moving speed by 1
Remote bomb - enable remotely detonated bomb
Life jacket - grants invisibility for 15 seconds
Love - grants 1 time scarecrow protection
+Life - increases life by 1
Sword - increase attack power by 1
Shield - increase defense by 1
Star - increase special point by 1
Orange roller - increase moving speed by 1
|A Button||Lay bombs|
|B Button||Activate remote bombs / Activate Charabom power|
|R Button||Charabom selection|
|L Button||Charabom selection|
|Select Button||Save screen|