Review by TheProdigy

Reviewed: 08/01/06

Personally, I prefer a little ranch dressing with my carrots.

Ever wondered what it would be like if you blended Mario Bros. and Sonic into one game? Well, I'm sure it would be a lot like Tiny Toon Adventures: Buster's Hidden Treasure, assuming you threw in the whole Toon thing in there somewhere. Oh, and don't be turned off by the fact that this is a show-based game, it's made my Konami, and it has "brilliance" written all over it. Well, sometimes, the "brilliance" is covered by a bit of "frustration", but we'll get to that later.

So, there's a hidden treasure somewhere! Buster Bunny just absolutely must find this treasure. But where could it be? Well, anywhere. Buster is going to travel all over the land for this treasure. En route, he'll also find that a mad scientist is kidnapping and brain-washing his friends and turning them against him! Well well, we can't allow this to go on can we? The mad scientist must be stopped! Hopefully, the treasure will be found too.

So that's pretty much it; Buster is traveling across the world, led by the kooky Gogo Dodo, to find this treasure. Whether it be forests, plains, mountains, shipwrecks, or factories; no terrain will slow him down. And you will find all these things in the game, plus more. Not to mention that they'll all be dripping in puzzles and of course, baddies which will try to slow you down. Luckily, a simple pop to the noggin will take most of them out...except for the mad scientist.

Anyway controlling yourself through the levels is easy as can be. Holding down the D-Pad will get you going, and it takes you a few seconds before you are running at full speed. At full speed, everything will fly by like in Sonic games, so keep your eyes open. Keep in mind that baddies will try and slow you down, either by putting down traps to trip you, walls for you to run into, or by simply standing in the way. If you're quick enough on the trigger, you can jump over them.

All along the way you collect, among other things, carrots. 50 carrots will trigger a whistling sound, alerting you that you've just earned another bonus character. Pressing A will call this bonus character (the character changes in different levels, but it doesn't really make a difference) on to the screen, and they will proceed to destroy all the monsters in sight. Useful, that.

As you would expect, each level gets harder as you go along, and new baddies are thrown into the mix. In the first levels there's lots of space for you to run wild and only few bad guys in the way, most of which stand still. In later levels however, things will be tighter, you'll be forced to make quick jumps, sometimes wall jumps, and there will be a lot more complex baddies in the way.

Every four or five levels, prepare yourself for a boss battle. The boss battles mainly consist of the mad scientist (boy or girl...?) running around trying to attack you while another (brain-washed) Tiny Toon character throws stuff at you or also chases after you. Not wanting to hurt your brain-washed friends, your goal is to hit the mad scientist in the head, not all that hard to do usually, but he/she'll (I'm really not sure what the gender is...) get trickier along the way.

Most of the levels are easy to control through, and work great. But the one major flaw in control through levels is the swimming. The few levels that involve swimming are a royal pain in the rear, since controlling Buster in the water is futile. Pressing C once will make him make a doggy paddle motion. He'll raise up a bit, hover in the spot for a second, and then plummet. This rabbit sinks faster than a boulder in a fishing pond. The only way to slow this pitfall is to tap C regularly, but not too often or you'll go upwards. You kind of have to plunge, then quick slow yourself, then plunge again, etc. This is really annoying, especially since you often have to swim deep often. Plus, fish enemies come out of nowhere, and it's nearly impossible to steer yourself away from them. Also, there's no way to attack underwater (aside from a bonus character attack), so you're pretty much screwed. Luckily, this is only in a few levels, and the other land levels are sensational.

The game has a password system, so when you need a break, you have to a copy down a 20 or so character password. Then, you have to enter in each character one-by-one at the password screen to jump to where you left off. While it works, it's quite annoying, and playing as much as you can in one sitting is a good idea.

To compliment the fantastic gameplay, the game has beautiful graphics. Aside from the close-up characters and land structures, which all look great, there's also the backgrounds. Often, you tend to not pay attention to the backgrounds, but if you take a glance, you'll notice that they're terrific. Excellently colorful and detailed, and they fit the level well. The plains levels feature a great skyline, while a cave level works in front of a darker backdrop. Either way, the game is graphically superb all around.

The game sounds good most of the time too. The first few levels feature the "gets-annoying-really-fast" title toon of Tiny Toons ("We're Tiny, we're tooney, we're all a little looney...") over and over, but from there, the soundtrack really takes off. The music blends well with the levels, my personal favorite being any of the cave music. Sound effects are minimal, but the ones that are there are clear. Most annoying sound effect award goes to the "jumping out of the water" sound that sounds more like a "plunger in the toilet" sound.

So all in all, I'd say an excellent game. All the 2D platformer necessities are there, things to collect that earn you something when you get a certain amount (in this case, carrots), plenty of baddies, boss battles, and lots more. It definitely has a Sonic feel, with a Mario-like look, and it takes that blend and twists it all up with Tooney fun. Definitely worth the time of any gamer that still plays their Genesis now and then.

Rating: 9

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