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Tomba! (PSone Classics) Reviewed by Cyril Lachel on . This PSone Classic introduces enough new elements to the genre to make Tomba feel like its own game. There are a few elements that went on to influence other Sony platformers, including LittleBigPlanet. Tomba is more of a workout than your typical platformer, but at the end you're rewarded with one of the PlayStation's best 2D action games. Tomba is definitely worth downloading. Rating: 92%
Tomba! (PSone Classics)
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Tomba! (PSone Classics) Tomba! (PSone Classics) Tomba! (PSone Classics) Tomba! (PSone Classics)
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What Is It? Think 2D platforming is nothing more than running and jumping? Then you clearly haven't played Tomba! (their emphasis, not mine). Originally released in 1998, Tomba is the story of a wild pink-haired, fanged boy. He's off on an adventure to find his grandfather's bracelet, which is somewhere out in the large, open world. Along the way he'll run into dozens of friendly characters, each trying to complete a task or solve a puzzle. This sets our hero off on an adventure far beyond what he imagined, complete with some real world ramifications if he fails.

Tomba is more of an adventure game than your typical Mario or Sonic game, forcing players to take on missions and complete challenges in order to earn money and access to new parts of the map. The world isn't level-driven, instead opting for one giant area of intersecting paths. In that sense the game is a lot like Metroid and Castlevania, even though the pacing feels completely different. There are 130 missions to complete, which means that you'll be spending a lot of time looking for hidden items, saving helpless animals and battling boss creatures. It's a rewarding experience that is unlike any other platformer on the market.

Does It Still Hold Up? The gameplay is simple, but not without some getting used to. Tomba doesn't have a typical jump, instead he leaps forward as if he's ready to grab onto to whatever he catches and rip it to shreds. As a result, this jumping mechanic can make some of the platforming challenges more frustrating than they should be. Thankfully the rest of the combat is solid, usually taking the backseat to the more interesting exploration elements.

The graphics are fantastic; creating a 2.5D perspective that still looks good today. While not all of the visuals hold up (there are a lot of pixelated sprites lying around), Tomba has the kind of style that makes it timeless. The writing is also good, offering players a lot of fun characters to interact with. And best of all, the actual adventure is worth going on. Each new area brings its own set of challenges, and you won't want to stop until you've completed all 130 missions.

Is It Worth The Money? Having just come off of playing the Monster World games on both the Wii and the Xbox 360, it's interesting to see how many of the same beats Tomba hits. Heck, the little guy even looks a little bit like Wonder Boy. Thankfully this PSone Classic introduces enough new elements to the genre to make Tomba feel like its own game. There are a few elements that went on to influence other Sony platformers, including LittleBigPlanet. Tomba is more of a workout than your typical platformer, but at the end you're rewarded with one of the PlayStation's best 2D action games. Tomba is definitely worth downloading.
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