Review – Puzzle Bobble 3D: Vacation Odyssey

The time has finally come to review a game that I’ve been waiting for! Well, not exactly. The last few years have seen the release of some amazing puzzle games from other studios! In particular there was Neverending Nightmares and Cube Escape: Paradox which were both very well received by gamers who enjoyed their puzzles with a twist. However, this year we get one from our own company- Puzzle Bobble 3D: Vacation Odyssey. And it’s quite possibly the best puzzler I’ve ever played… Introduction: Everyone knows “puzzle” is in my name because no matter how many times you play these little blocky shapes fall into place at your command; you always feel like an absolute genius when they do so without any problems or glitches whatsoever. But what happens when someone else tries to break down those walls? That’s where developer Hidden Path Entertainment comes in with Nightmare Adventures (Neverending Nightmares) and Cube Escape (Cube Escaper). These two titles are examples of what can happen when developers take on traditional genres such as point-and-click adventure games or retro arcade style platformers and remix them using elements found in video games today while still remaining true to their roots through clever design choices and innovative mechanics instead of retreading old ground again and again

The “puzzle bobble 3d metacritic” is a game that was released in December of 2017. The game has received mixed reviews, with some saying that the game is too difficult and others saying that it is not challenging enough.

Even while Bubble Bobble began as an arcade platformer, its puzzle sibling, Puzzle Bobble (which was once known as Bust-a-Move), is perhaps much more well-known. I recall that almost every system, up to the 3DS, had at least one version of the series at some point. After Taito’s downfall in the 2010s, fresh entries, as well as new Space Invaders and Darius games, were no longer available. It was only a matter of time for Bust-a-Move/Puzzle Bobble to appear on current-gen consoles since that the firm is making a return with smaller arcade-like revival games. The result is Puzzle Bobble 3D: Vacation Odyssey.

It’s a fun spin on the game, but 2D Bust-a-Move is the clear winner.

Even if I sort of wish they had gone the simpler path, Puzzle Bobble 3D: Vacation Odyssey isn’t simply a polygonal twist on the tried-and-true Bust-a-Move “connect three” paradigm (more on that later). This is a fresh twist on the franchise’s gameplay loop, focused on three-dimensional puzzles that you must solve by destroying colored orbs and paying attention to the direction of your shots, since they will continually flip around and catch you off guard if you were aiming for an opening.

It’s a great gameplay loop, but it’s less hectic than the others, favoring a more strategic approach. The primary career mode puts you in several situations where you must either solve a problem with a certain number of bubbles or in a certain amount of time. It’s entertaining, although it’s not quite arcade-style. The primary arcade game featured in this bundle is also more strategic than any previous Bust-a-Move installment, being more of a race against time to keep your orbs from being grabbed by a black hole. Doesn’t it sound strange? This is, in fact, what occurs. This circumstance can’t be described any other way.


I’m not a fan of the way Puzzle Bobble 3D reveals its gripping story.

The controls take some getting accustomed to, as the creators attempted to think of a little method to employ the DualSense’s adaptable triggers for the sake of it. You aim with the left analog stick, and your strength is calculated by how long you hold down R2. In principle, it’s a good idea, but you can only fire it correctly if you hold R2 all the way down or if you push just a small amount of it, causing your bubble to plummet to the ground. It’s almost as if there isn’t a middle ground.

Puzzle Bobble 3D: Vacation Odyssey’s presentation is really very excellent. I was shocked to see that this game had a real PS5 version, and although the graphics weren’t spectacular, I was nevertheless thrilled with how lovely the Bubble Bobble protagonists looked in full 3D. The game is bright and colorful, with little to no loading times, excellent performance, and a sugary but constantly upbeat music. Its menu system is a little unappealing, and it reminds me more of a smartphone game than anything else. Thankfully, you won’t need to view menus very often since you can go from one level to the next without opening a new window.


In the arcade mode of Puzzle Bobble 3D, you must keep your bubbles from being swallowed by whatever this black hole is meant to be.

I won’t deny that Puzzle Bobble 3D: Vacation Odyssey is an entertaining arcade game. If you’re searching for some casual puzzle fun on the PS5, this game will provide enough of it. With that said, as much as I applaud the devs for attempting new things with such a tried and true concept, I don’t believe this 3D gameplay is anywhere near as entertaining and addicting as the old Puzzle Bobble/Bust-a-Move we all grew up playing and enjoying. If anything, I’m hoping Taito pays attention to user input and delivers a contemporary remake of the original 2D puzzle game soon. Hopefully, it will be called Bust-a-Move, as it should be.


It’s not the most spectacular PlayStation 5 build, but it’s the prettiest Bubble Bobble characters in 3D you can get.

The concept of a 3D version of the traditional Puzzle Bobble game is intriguing, but the controls aren’t always responsive or intuitive. Even if in very little ways, it makes advantage of the DualSense’s adaptive triggers.

The music, like that of pretty much every Bubble or Puzzle Bobble game, is considerably more catchy than it should be.

It’s entertaining in an old-school arcadey manner, but there’s no disputing that the original 2D Puzzle Bobble is a lot more enjoyable than the current 3D version. However, kudos for attempting to reinvent an old formula.

Final Score: 7.0

Puzzle Bobble 3D: Vacation Odyssey is currently available on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5.

PS5 was used for this review.

The publisher donated a copy of Puzzle Bobble 3D: Vacation Odyssey.

As an example:

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In the “bubble bobble 4 friends” is a puzzle-based game that has you playing as Bub and Bob. You must guide your characters through various levels in order to collect all of the treasure in each level.

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