Galactic Taz Ball  - Review

Galactic Taz Ball
Rating: E - Everyone

This is a side scroller, on the diagonal, with Taz, the mythical Tasmanian devil battling to prevent his Tasmanian landscape from being ported to Mars. One of the things I like about Taz is that he uses no weapons - only his natural, ecologically sound forces like tornado and stomping to combat villains. The villain in this case it is Marvin the Martian and his robot minions who are stealing the landscape to enhance his barren planet.

Various pieces of landscape - forests, deserts, jungles and snow covered lands - float in the air creating the Overworld platforms for Taz to negotiate, requiring him to stomp robots and collect various rewards along the way. Navigation control is through a trackball which you swipe to move Taz. Stomping action is performed by pressing any key. One Taz is in motion, stomping is a quick way to stop him and keep him from falling off the platforms.

It's a bad match of game to control. The platforms are so narrow and the trackball so imprecise for navigation that death results more from falling off the platforms than enemy encounters. The trackball worked well in Beyond the Yellow Brick Road (Xseed) because the 3D settings allowed free and expansive movement. A swipe at the trackball would send Dorothy running with her skirts a-flying.

After completing an area of the Overworld, Taz falls through to the Undeworld. Here the game turns into a more conventional platformer where Taz must get through a maze of Martian machinery. He starts and stops when touched with the stylus and swiping across him will change his direction. This level offers a short reprieve from the touch and go trackball on the Overworld.

There is a whole spate of side scrollers coming to the market on the DS. This little machine can handle a lot more than developers are asked to do. The industry is in the end-of-summer, dog-days lull before the forth quarter games kick in. Hold on.

Fun Factor: How hard do you want to work?
Female Factor: Zip
Player Friendly: Mismatch between controller and game requirements.

Reviewed by: Editor - Sep/10

  • Galactic Taz Ball
  • © WB Games
  • Platform(s): DS
  • To Order: $29.99