Rusty Spout Rescue Adventure deserves a little credit as there is an attempt at creating a story with hand drawn visuals but sadly is nothing more than a low quality Bust-A-Move knock-off. Odd design choices really hold back the entire experience.
Like Bust-A-Move, the goal is to shoot bubbles from the bottom of the screen, causing them to burst when matches are made. It is simple but addictive design, the reason why Taito’s franchise has lived so long, but 7 Raven’s take is frustrating and lacking. Colors that have been cleared from the well always find their way back into the queue, usually in large quantities, artificially increasing the challenge and creating a terrible “destroy that last piece” issue. The cannon that shoots the bubbles is also annoying because it simply doesn’t move fast enough. Holding the shoulder buttons increases speed, so I found myself holding it the entire time, but really should be the opposite. Instead of holding to speed up, holding should cause it to slow down while the default speed is fast. Aiming from one side of the well to the other side could easily cause a game over as it takes way too much time, especially when compounded with the unnecessary “why is this color coming back” issue.
The main single player mode is also baffling. Losing forces the player all the way back to the beginning with no option to continue but yet the game expects the player to finish five worlds, composed of 10 levels and a boss fight, in one sitting and without dying. But hey, not to worry because there is multiplayer mode and other modes to play around with, right? Well, sort of. You see, the player has to play enough of the single player campaign to unlock the battle and challenge modes. So if you suck or don’t want to take the time to access to these modes, let alone see any other playable characters, you first need to suffer through the unfair single player offering.
Thankfully, there is a colorblind mode which assigns each bubble as a number instead of a color. However, this is actually the preferred way to play because the color difference between the blue colors and gray bubbles is easily confused. There are occasional power-ups, like a bomb blast that clears a chuck of bubbles at once or another that instantly clears bubbles of the same color, but they don’t appear with enough frequency. The story is also stupid, something about pirates, and is poorly written so it doesn’t make any sense. Also, the game freezes cannon fire as the screen drops which also feels cheap and the children laughing sound effects is enough to make you mute your TV.
There is a reason why Bust-A-Move and its numerous sequels and spin offs have remained a fan favorite for years but Rusty Spout Rescue Adventure fails to capitalize on this. Terrible design choices and lack of common sense gameplay elements make this puzzle game stumble at every turn.
Also available on PS4 and coming soon to Nintendo Switch.
Not As Good As: Snood
What Does: Rusty Spout Rescue Adventure even mean?
Wait For It: Bust-A-Move battle royale on new gen consoles