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Banana Bugs

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A flying monkey bent on trapping hordes of bugs to save his bananas and his village - definitely original

Pros

  • Free to play as a trial version
  • Original game concept based on trapping bugs in a decreasing surface area
  • Over 470 levels to play through
  • Built-in difficulty curve for each level
  • Go up against a variety of different bugs, each with their own abilities
  • Collect bananas and upgrade your village with launchers, buildings and more
  • Utilize an assortment of power-ups to give you an advantage during tougher levels

Cons

  • Monkey can be unresponsive on occasion

Banana Bugs is a free puzzle game for PC (Windows), developed by Big Fish Games, in which a player must assist a monkey in luring in and trapping (netting) a horde of bugs to prevent them from eating his bananas. It is available as a free trial version, or as a full version from their main site. 

Features, UI, Graphics

Banana Bugs is a fairly simple but addictive puzzle game in which you must help a flying monkey protect his bananas by capturing hordes of voracious bugs in nets laid out on a large grid. Like many arcade-style games, the core mechanics and controls for the game are fairly basic when achieving this aim. The some 470+ levels on offer consist of a large bamboo grid, your flying monkey, and various types of bugs and other obstacles. When you begin a level, you are presented with a grid of varying shape and configuration which you must fill by casting nets over smaller portions of its surface area. Doing so will raise the fill percentage and trap any bugs that are currently wandering within. Controls consist of moving your monkey over the area of the stage, done by simply dragging your mouse, and casting a net, done by holding right click in an area between two parallel points until a net snaps into place. To change the direction of your net from horizontal to vertical or vice versa, use the right mouse button.

The in-game UI is very simple. In the middle is the current level grid, displayed as a series of interconnected bamboo sticks, nets, bugs, and other objects. At the top left is a menu button. On the right are the number of bananas you've collected, your lives, your score, the fill percentage of the level (see below), and the level number. Graphically, the game is typical of arcade-style games, favoring rudimentary graphics for its level grid, the monkey, and the bugs. Menus are sharp looking and well laid out. The backgrounds, in far higher graphical quality, display images of the Carribean such as pirate ships. 

Gameplay, In-Game Objectives and Other Features

The general idea in each level is to fill as large a surface area as possible in as few moves as possible without putting any of your nets or your monkey at risk e.g. filling 75% or 85% of the level with nets. If a bug touches off your monkey while casting a net, it will cost you a life. The difficulty in this game arises from its rule that you can only place a net which has a surface area smaller than an adjacent one. As such, casting nets around smaller areas towards the end of the level can be difficult and require precise timing. Furthermore, since certain bugs can cut your nets, completing a level necessitates that you become skilled at such techniques to allow for swift completion of these objectives. Each level completed rewards the player with some of your monkey's precious bananas. If you manage to exceed the objectives laid out, either by eliminating all bugs in the area or filling 100% of the game's surface area, bonus bananas will be offered in addition to the ones usually awarded. 

Having completed several levels, you will be returned to Monkey Town, a kind of map screen, where you must use bananas to help rebuild and save your village. Bananas can be used to build structures for in-level use such as Missile Launchers, Casinos, and many more. These will help your monkey fend off and defeat bugs more easily. As in most games of this kind, however, your currency is in quite short supply, so it is recommended that you only spend it when necessary. 

In terms of difficulty, the game rarely requires you to purchase these specialty items. While levels can be tough, appropriate timing and precision are the key to getting through them intact. As you progress through levels, a player will encounter different types of power-ups such as battle monkeys, coco bombs and hurricanes, as well as an assortment of different bugs, each with their own special properties. I'll leave it up to the player to discover these. Needless to say, things get pretty tough in higher levels. 

While levels can be tough, appropriate timing and precision are the key to getting through them intact. As you progress through levels, a player will encounter different types of power-ups such as battle monkeys, coco bombs and hurricanes, as well as an assortment of different bugs, each with their own special properties

The Verdict

As with many arcade-style games, Banana Bugs is simple but fun. Its game mechanics and controls are easy to learn, but in order to master the higher levels skill and timing are required. Graphics are attractive enough for a game of its type, with some nice looking backgrounds and color schemes at work. The overall goal of the game is actually rather original, requiring a player to trap hordes of bugs in an ever-decreasing surface area. This, by default, makes each level more difficult as it progresses. All in all, the game is a fine diversion for anyone who is a fan of this genre of games. Gameplay is fun, challenging, but not overly addictive. Well worth downloading. The game is available as a free trial. The full version can be purchased from their main site. 

 

Banana Bugs icon

Type Demo

Version 1.0

Other versions

1.0

Rating