Boost Beast is a match three game with a purpose, a drive and an oddly specific plot-line. You are king of the animals, who, in this case, walk on two legs and seem pretty civilized, all things considered. One day a zombie uprising occurs, and it’s up to you to direct your loyal subjects to a.) crush the approaching horde and b.) throw them up in front of you like a meat shield. No one said the king’s job was eternally glamorous, but you shoulder such task with pride! You have over one hundred and fifty stages of puzzling to figure out what’s going on and how to stop the invasion once and for all.
Right off the bat, if you know how to do a single-space movement to pair three of the same color, you understand the core strategy of Boost Beast. Pairing more than three at a time gets you any one of three types of power ups, and chaining together several matches creates a domino effect that adds to your score like crazy. As cute as it is, there’s nothing inherently groundbreaking about the central idea of Boost Beast. There are four entities who watch over you and can generate a power up on cue, which can be utterly essential in some cases. You can’t just use them over and over, either: they slowly recharge between stages, so it’s important to try and pick things sparingly.
Zombies come in two standard flavors, uncolored or colored. The uncolored zombies are your bread and butter, as literally anything you throw at them could be their downfall. The colored ones can sometimes be significantly more troublesome, as they will just destroy anything that isn’t their color as soon as they encounter it. This can be frustrating, especially after a long chain is unleashed, because it just feels totally pointless. It suggests that you should focus more on strategy, at least as far as trying to only activate the same colored animals, but it really can’t be helped, and Boost Beast makes you feel foolish when tens of subjects are crushed under the heel of a single, pink zombie. Fail to keep the zombies off you long enough and the king gets mauled, game over, try again.
You might infer, based on what I’ve said, that Boost Beast is a difficult game, and I’m sorry to say that’s not exactly true. Sure, the level designs are all different and the inclusion of staggered rows or rocks that need to be broken slow you down, but the game is exceptionally generous in what it delivers to the player. You end up with chains that seem to spring out of nowhere, and some power ups trigger other power ups. For example, if a Big Bomb catches a Cross Bomb in the explosion, the Cross Bomb goes off when the Big Bomb has concluded. And the Cross Bomb can then potentially create new Bombs, and the whole thing goes hog wild.
You have a three star rating system to contend with, which is based on your score, but Boost Beast has your back there as well. Those chain reaction bombs? If you have any left on the screen when you’ve beaten the zombies, they automatically start going off, and more and more reactions can be created, and, yes, they all affect your score. It’s almost humiliating to beat a boss zombie and barely get a one star rating, but then have the after effects of the game jettison your score into three perfect stars. It felt like my mom adding a one to the front of my score when I play Yahtzee and declaring me the big boy champion. Mom, I’m 30, I don’t need you to give me an instant win. But thank you and I love you and I’d like meatloaf for dinner.
But Boost Beast is cute, and not sickeningly so. The animals all look like rounder, softer stuffed toys that just happen to be alive, and the zombies are properly cute zombies, just ragged and bloodthirsty. The bosses range from larger versions of the zombies themselves to ridiculous things like giant hot dogs or hobby horses. I couldn’t get mad that the game was hilariously easy because it really did a lot to soothe my nerves. Even the soundtrack is a jaunty little march, letting you know you’re leading your forces to victory, and a sound bite here and there of the King giving commands and declaring his power really puts you in the right headspace. Between the audio and visual stimulation, the game did exactly what I imagine it’s primary purpose was: occupy my attention and provide fun stimuli.
And that’s what the primary function is, at the end of the day. I recently reviewed Qbic Paint, and walked away with a conclusion regarding the casual nature of the game and its enjoyment in small spurts for the right audience. This is more of the same, but a different set of people altogether. If you’re not careful, Boost Beast has the absolute potential to take away hours of your life at a time, as the deceptively fast moving stages only take theoretical minutes to accomplish. But what happens when you stack tens of minutes? You’re late for work and, surprise, “I was playing a game on the Switch” stil isn’t a valid excuse to why the morning reports are late. Yet it’s not something infinite, which makes it much safer than a lot of games out there. Boost Beast could easily take away a weekend, maybe even three days, but you won’t move backwards unless you NEED to beat your own scores. The game basically hands you three star ratings, and standard knowledge of what three things look like lined up will keep you flush with stars for all your days.
If you’re looking for a fun and funny puzzle game to enjoy while chain watching The Office, this is straight up your alley with no frills attached. If you genuinely think the coming zombie apocalypse will be thwarted three rabbits at a time, then bless your heart, I have the perfect game for you. Boost Beast isn’t going to become a weapon to rival Metal Gear, but it can certainly snatch ten minutes from you without you even realizing or caring.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Nintendo Switch code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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