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A silly premise, surprisingly competent 3D effects, and cartoony action make Inafune’s Bugs vs. Tanks! a unique addition to the 3DS’ library.

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Bugs vs. Tanks! is a pleasant little adventure from legendary developer Keiji Inafune (Mega Man, Resident Evil) that recalls the best of the bargain bin B-movie era, combining engaging arcade shooting with bizarre enemies. The latest entry in the Guild 02 collection is just as strange as the rest, miniaturizing a German platoon straight out of World War II to combat a legion of bugs. Yes, bugs. The Germans are so tiny that these insects pose an enormous threat to their plentiful tanks and armaments. It’s an outlandish setup, but that’s just part of the fun.

You and the rest of your German platoon comrades are given extensive tutorial training to tackle the oncoming threat. You can gun down wasps, bees, and other enemies hurtling toward you via manual or automatic fire, though automatic fire is the way to go if you want to emerge victorious. Within a range of bite-sized missions you’re tasked with gunning down a wide variety of certain bugs while amassing supplies, rescuing soldiers, or defending your base. You don’t need to spend too long with each assignment – less than a few minutes on each, which makes it perfect for on-the-go play.

Your tanks are powerful, and you’ve even got plenty of options for customization. Abandoned tanks found throughout missions are valuable for additional parts and items, and you can find pieces to upgrade with these. The turret, paint job, chassis, and other parts of the tanks are customizable, though you’ll want to mainly focus on speed, power, and defense to ensure your tank is up to snuff. There’s a constant stream of new enemies out to get you, so staying vigilant against new threats is always a good idea.

Core gameplay is a bit repetitive, but these missions are no pushover. There are 29 story levels, and each can get considerably difficult. Expect to retry them multiple times before emerging victorious since some are downright forgiving. This may turn some potential players away, but others will be thankful for the ramped-up difficulty, as it will end up lengthening play time.

A silly premise, surprisingly competent 3D effects, and cartoony action make Bugs vs. Tanks! a unique part of your 3DS library. Hankering for a nice bug shootout with some misplaced Germans? Look no further than Level-5’s latest, because you’re not going to find it elsewhere anyway.

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About the Author: Brittany Vincent