There are certain combinations that just make sense. Chocolate and peanut butter, strawberries and bananas, puzzles and explosions...well, okay, anything and explosions, really, but this time, it's being paired up with a bevy of chain reaction puzzles in Blast Master, the newest game by the equally classic combo of Komix and GameBalance.
Each level starts with a preset field of bombs, and a few for you to place around the level. The ultimate goal is to make everything go boom, which is a good goal for pretty much any situation. To do this, you've got quite a few different tools at your disposal. There are basic silver bombs that go boom, red bombs that go boom in different directions, mysterious disembodied floating cat heads that make everything boom a little big bigger, and, of course, a fire that starts the boom. Once you've got the level set up to your liking, press the play button, and watch everything go boom. Or not. Usually not. In which case, you have to figure out what went wrong and try to make it right. Make everything explode and it's on to the next level, for more fun and explosions.
Timing and planning are key to making progress through the explosion-filled world of Blast Master. Fans of trial-and-error style gameplay will have a lot to love here, with free placement of pieces and layouts that don't always have obvious solutions. Fortunately, there's no penalty for failure, and you can keep your previous layout, so you don't have to place everything from scratch (unless you get frustrated and press the reset button as I did many times). It would be nice if you could move selected pieces around with the keyboard to fine-tune some of the harder shots, but it's no problem that a steady hand and lots of patience can't fix. As frustrating as the puzzles can get, it's easy to get completely absorbed by the fast-paced music and beautiful explosions, until you've worked your way through every level.
Alright, now, that's enough reading, get out there and blow some stuff up!