I remember playing the original Bomberman on a friend's Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) when I was a kid. There were four of us. The action was frenzied. So can the DS replicate the same childhood memories 20 years on? We get bombing to find out.

Bomberman Story DS on the Nintendo DS is broken into two parts. The first, and for this version the main crux of the game, is the story mode. The second, and for us more enjoyable part, is the multiplayer offering and the reason for buying the game.

Story mode plays out like Pokemon; you roam around the countryside killing aliens and creatures, solving puzzles and talking to lots of people. There is lots of talking, lots of roaming, and lots of puzzle solving.

The graphics aren't great, its all top down and as we said its very much like Pokemon, without the Pokemon battles to break up the gameplay.

The Battle mode is where all the action is though. Here you get to play up to seven other players across both screens to be the last man standing. Players can connect either via an ad-hoc network if you're in the same room, or via the internet if you're at a wireless hotspot.

Played across both screens it gets very chaotic with bombs, bombermen and power-ups are everywhere.

Of course you don't need every bomberman to be a human and the computer will happily fill in any vacant spots. A word of warning though the computer is mean.

New icons include plenty more adverse power-ups rather than ones that help you out, like decreasing rather than increasing your flame length and reducing rather than adding your to the amount of bombs you can drop at any one time and you've got to be a lot more careful in what you pick-up.

Verdict

Grumbles? There are a few, the story mode isn't that compelling, and there is no button to skip the game once you've died in battle mode, only the reset key, meaning you've got to watch the rest of the battle play out unless you don't min losing your score. It's not the end of the world, but it means your score from previous wins aren't kept if you want to reset the game because you've died early.

Bomberman Story DS is good, but it's not without its faults. For us the story mode was pretty dull and it's really only the Battle mode that made us keeping coming back for more.

Great if you've got mates to play against, short-lived if you're on your own.