Review: Super Exploding Zoo
The Super Exploding Zoo is under attack from an alien invasion and it’s up to the explosive inhabitants to take them out. Super Exploding Zoo puts you in control of a herd of animals (doubling as bombs) as you protect an egg from the invading aliens across 80 different levels. The game feels something like a tower-defense without having to manage numerous different towers. Instead you’ll control a wide variety of animals in a herd that each have their own attack power and special ability.
Starting off you’ll control Penguins, Donkeys, and Dodo Birds. These animals have an attack power of 1 which means you’ll need to hit an alien with 6 of them to take it out. As you progress you’ll come across stronger animals, but more importantly the animals you’ll unlock will provide new tactics to take advantage of. Lions can sit on a platform to roar and slow down aliens, Giraffes can be positioned to fling spit at enemies (essentially acting as your towers), Monkeys can climb vines and Turtles can create bridges that’ll give you access into areas with even more animals. The key to the game is not only protecting the egg in each stage, but to also build up the largest herd of animals possible. Ending the stage with a big herd of animals will give you more firepower in breaking apart eggs that will ultimately unlock new animal types.
In the early stages there’s not much in the way of strategy other than just ramming your entire herd into whatever alien threat is nearby. As things progress it’s increasingly important to use the ‘Tactics’ mode that allows control of each and every animal in the herd. In an instant you can easily assign a Lion to go one direction, 3 Monkeys to go another, and an Elephant to go somewhere else. It’s quick, simple to use, and more importantly helps in ensuring that the herd is as large as possible at the end of the stage.
Outside of the main stages the hub area has plenty of cool little secrets to find and it’s not uncommon to see various animals just hanging around. (I for one really enjoyed seeing the group of Penguins trying to balance each other.) There’s also a multiplayer mode (on PS4, Vita, or between both) that puts both players herd of animals against each other. It’s a fun little distraction, I enjoyed the handful of matches that I played with Chris, but it’s not really something I was keen on spending a lot of time with.
The animals in Super Exploding Zoo each have these really big eyes and sort of dopey expression on their face that I felt really added a lot to the tone. The game is super silly and just plain fun. I mentioned it before, but I love how between stages you could find various animals goofing off on a stage like area in the main hub. There’s also a ton of imagery relating to bombs, matches, and dynamite that shows up everywhere in the game. Add that to the expression each animal gives as you charge directly at oncoming aliens and it’s hard not to smile.
Super Exploding Zoo is a fun little puzzle game with an explosive (sorry) amount of personality. The only real drawbacks are that the game never really gets all that challenging and it’s ultimately a bit short. Of course quality over quantity is what’s important and for the most part everything in Super Exploding Zoo is pretty great.
A copy of this game was downloaded through PlayStation Plus for review purposes. For more info on our review policy click here.
What I Like:
- Building a herd and ramming it into aliens is fun
- Explosion references all over the place
- Love the art style
- Tactics mode
What I Dislike:
- A little too easy and short