Bird & Beans
Most gamers who played the Game Boy Advance classic WarioWare Inc.: Mega MicroGame$ probably never achieved the 100% completion rating that would unlock a couple of games starring a cute little bird. Pyoro and Pyoro 2 were little gems for those elite few, providing huge fun in a colorful little package. Thankfully, Nintendo has asked Pyoro to make a comeback with Bird & Beans, one of the five games debuting at the Nintendo DSi shop.
It took us 20 hours to unlock these games in WarioWare, and now everyone can partake in this pleasure for a measly two bucks. Let us tell you right now: spend the two bucks.
In Bird & Beans, you control Pyoro, a little red bird with a pornographically long tongue that juts out at a perfect 45-degree angle. Your goal is to gobble up the fruit falling from the sky before it hits the ground and score as many points as possible. If the fruit touches the ground, it'll create a hole, limiting your playing field. Get bonked on the head just once and it's game over.
The higher you grab the fruit, the more points you receive, from 10 to 1000 points for each delicious food eaten. A few variations include white fruit (they fix any holes in the ground) and blinking fruit (they replace a lot of holes while clearing the screen for you).
The game is all about timing your tongue so it snags the fruit at just the right moment, and as you score more points, guess what? More fruit falls at an exponentially quicker rate. Pyoro, faced with this ongoing barrage of fruit, has no power-ups, no speed boosts and only one life. He's a pimp, and if you survive into the tens (or dare we say hundreds) of thousands, you'll feel like one too.
When you break the system's high score of 10,000 points, a new option appears on the menu for Bird & Beans 2. This sequel stars a yellow Pyoro, sans the long tongue, with a penchant for spitting seeds. The fruit keeps falling, but this time you want to shoot it down.
By keeping controls extremely simple (Pyoro can move left or right, and one button is used for the tongue/spitting), the challenge focuses on scoring as many points as possible, and we all know how that goes. Since each game session can last from 30 seconds to several minutes, Bird & Beans has the potential to steal hours away from you.
The graphics are simple and cute. Pyoro is such an endearing character in the way he moves and munches, and details like the spittle and falling leaves are definitely appreciated. The stages also have nice little touches that make you want to achieve higher scores as you see different cities, fireworks, shooting stars and more.
Bird & Beans doesn't use the Nintendo DSi camera, microphone or even the second screen, but for $2, you'd be hard-pressed to find a better value in the DSi lineup. Pyoro, it's good to have you back, and it's great that you'll entertain a much wider audience with your weirdness.
What's Hot: Taking some of the more obscure and addictive games that were hidden away in the first WarioWare and making them available for only 200 points ($2).
What's Not: If you have that copy of WarioWare, Pyoro and his antics will feel familiar.