Explosive Jake by developer PigeonDev is a simple game, therefore, this will be a simple review. In short, Explosive Jake is a Bomberman clone. You control a skeleton that can place bombs that will destroy enemies and other obstacles in your path. The main objective in each level is to find the hidden door and the hidden key that opens the door. This formula goes for the entire 39 level cycle with a couple of new enemies and obstacles thrown in there.
The most positive aspect of the game is its music. It is full of catchy, well-composed 8-bit themes that are reminiscent of the original Contra. Another positive aspect is that it is quick work for trophy and achievement hunters. Sadly, this means Nintendo Switch owners will be missing out on that benefit.
The negative aspects are much more noticeable. The controls are sluggish and sticky. There were numerous instances of pressing the button to place a bomb, only for nothing to happen. A quick tap of the button seemed to help, but it still wasn’t fully reliable. The game has a slow pace and is way too repetitive. About halfway through the game, I beat a level but was confused because I seemed to be playing the same level over again. The layout seemed identical, but was slightly altered. And it didn’t come across as a creative alteration, but rather a copy and paste with a minor edit. More upgrades and character progression would have been nice too. The player gains a reward with an extra bomb in their permanent inventory every five levels or so, but never a permanent health or speed boost.
When all is said and done, this is a tough one to recommend. There wasn’t a lot (if any) of fun that was had in the hour or so of time it took to beat the game. Unless you’re desperate for cheap and easy achievements, Explosive Jake likely won’t be worth it.