Toss on your snorkeling mask, flippers and your Speedo – it’s time to return to Big Kahuna Reef for an underwater puzzle adventure.
This sequel to the wildly popular Big Kahuna Reef – which, in late 2004, became one of the hottest download sensations for its additive 3-in-a-row game-play – offers hundreds of levels, new power-ups and explosive chain reactions.
Gamezebo spent some time getting our feet wet with Big Kahuna Reef 2: Chain Reaction. Here’s what to expect when this game washes on shore in June.
In case you haven’t laid your mouse on the original game, or similar 3-in-a-row diversions such as Bejeweled or Jewel Quest, the object of Kahuna Reef 2 is to create matches of at least three identical objects in a row on a game board by clicking on adjacent pieces to swap them. Once three or more of the same objects are lined up vertically or horizontally, they disappear, which makes way for new pieces to cascade down the board.
Sticking with the reef theme, all of the objects in the game are water-related, such as starfish, crabs, shells, anchors, sea urchins and water lilies, to name a few.
In order to complete the level, gamers must remove all of the pieces on the board with wooden planks behind them. To keep things fresh, the board layout changes from level to level.
A new game-play addition is chained events and explosive pieces. With the former, players who perform a certain move – such as freeing a locked piece by making it part of a matched group – initiates a domino-like chain reaction that sets off a series of events, causing multiple pieces to disappear (it’s quite the sight to see!). Perhaps this new feature inspired the name of the game: Big Kahuna Reef 2: Chain Reaction.
Explosions also help clear the board for you – including removing pieces with wooden planks behind them, which helps you finish the level. This is performed in a number of ways. One is to make matches of at least five identical pieces, which leaves behind a bomb you can detonate; if you swap this bomb with another piece it results in a huge explosion (say, 20 pieces destroyed) while double-clicking on the bomb results in a smaller blast (perhaps eliminating 12 pieces or so). It boils down to your strategy, as you may not want to swap the piece with its neighbor.
The game offers other explosives on the level, ranging from little sticks of dynamite to nuclear bombs (hmm, perhaps this is why the fish in Springfield have three eyes?). Players will be treated to an "explosive" bomb-happy board every ten levels or so
In between levels, gamers can select their desired backdrop and can unlock up to 20 different fish types to populate the ocean. This watery wildlife, by the way, swims behind and in front of your game board while you play.
Big Kahuna Reef 2: Chain Reaction offers an incredible 700 levels in total, spread between the three main game modes (the original game had 150 levels), plus it chips with an intuitive level editor so you can create your own board layouts. Reflexive Entertainment is also planning downloadable bonus levels – all accessed from within the game.
Whether or not you’ve swam with the first Kahuna Reef, this sequel outdoes itself with plenty of explosive game-play that will keep your mouse-clicking finger busy for hours on end.