How I Became a Fan of Bomberman

Here's something I don't talk about a lot. I love the Bomberman series! Sure, I'm not some super fan or anything, but I do really enjoy the games. I've played the vast majority of them at this point, and it's something I'll play once in awhile when I feel like playing something different. It's a series that has been around for a long time now, but for me -- it's actually one that I had a unique introduction to. Instead of going to the store and buying a Bomberman game like many others did -- it was more of an adventure for me. And that's the story I wanted to share with you all today.

So, technically the first time I ever even heard about Bomberman was back on the PlayStation. My uncle was the first person I knew who got a PS1, and he'd often invite me over to try out different games on it. Along with his actual games, he also had multiple demo discs, and both me and my cousins (not his kids -- he didn't have any) would sit around the TV and try them out. One demo disc in particular had a demo for Bomberman World. I don't think any of us knew what it was, but when we realized it was a multiplayer "battle" type game, I remember we sat around for an hour or so just replaying the demo over and over. I thought it was fun, but I never did ask my parents for a Bomberman game -- that's all I played of it as a kid. In fact, I wouldn’t see anything of Bomberman again, until I was in high school.

The reason I got into Bomberman technically all circles back to my friend “Vile.” Back when I ran my MegaMan and Sonic fan sites, he joined them and started using names like “Altair” with an avatar to go along with said names. One day I eventually asked him what it was, and he explained Bomberman 64 to me. He went into the story, who the characters were, and how the sequel continued to expand on things. It sounded really cool to me, and made me want to get into the series myself. I eventually managed to track down Bomberman 64 (and later played 64 Second Attack), but until then my go to became Bomberman Jetters — the anime. 

Back then Crunchyroll was a well known anime streaming service, where pretty much anyone could upload anything anime related. This meant it was mostly fan subs (as anime was not popular as it is today), and you never really knew what would be on there day to day. As I used the site to watch Macross 7 (which is finally getting released in the West after all these years!), I figured it would be my best bet to get into Bomberman Jetters as well. And yeah, I wasn’t wrong! They had every episode, and I started binge watching it every change I got… I loved it! While the story/characters were different from what other Bomberman games were (it’s even different from the Bomberman Jetters video games — there are technically 3 if you count Generations), but it was really cool. It followed the story of young White Bomber wanting to join the Jetters, and follow in his brother’s footsteps. It was sorta monster of the weekish, but it was a really fun kids show. It made me want to play Bomberman even more, and motivated me to make it a reality.

Although Bomberman 64 didn’t exactly click with me, I still liked it. I managed to find a copy at Slackers (a store for used games/cds/movies/etc), but unfortunately my copy looked like it had been stuck in the dirt. It took hours to clean all of the mud off of the contacts, but thankfully the game still worked. Vile gave me advice on how to get through the game (it’s pretty challenging), and later on I moved on to Bomberman 64 Second Attack (which I liked more). I also grabbed the old GBC and GBA games once I got the chance, and downloaded what the virtual console had on the Wii. I never actually finished them, but they kept me wanting more. Bomberman Land Touch became one of my favorite DS games at the time (a mini game collection style game), and Bomberman Land Wii became one of my favorite Wii games as well. Later on I eventually talked my mom into getting me Bomberman Jetters on the GameCube, but we had to pay a pretty penny from it, and got it from a short lived local used game store. I feel like it was worth the price, but it made me sad to see the opening theme song had been removed from the US release (which was also common back in the day). Heck, I liked all of these games so much, I actually considered getting Bomberman Zero despite knowing how bad it was! But that never actually happened. (Most likely a good thing.) While I did skip over rereleases and Xbox Live arcade and PSN release, I made sure Bomberman R was one of the two launch games I bought when the Switch came out. And that brings us to today.

Even though Bomberman isn’t my go to game to play, it’s a series that is special to me, and I always look forward to seeing more from it. I’d love to see another RPG or action/adventure entry in the series, and I’d love for the Bomberman Jetters anime to get an official release sometime. I know it’s very unlikely, but it’s one of the few series that we still have no way to watch officially. As for the older games — I’m still waiting for the day a collection comes out for them as well. As often as the original titles get released, I still find it weird that we haven’t seen 64, Second Attack, Heroes, Generation, or Jetters get another release. Maybe they weren’t as popular as I’d like to think they were, but I still feel like they deserve to see the light of day again. It’s just a fun series, and I wish more people could experience more of its highlights. 

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