No One Can Stop Mr Domino! (PS1) Review

Ahhhh, Artdink. If there was ever a developer after my own heart, Artdink would probably be jealous. Granted, the eccentric developer really only had two games I loved (the game in question, plus Tail of the Sun), but I loved those games as if they were my own illegitimate children. They were of a caliber of strangeness unmatched before or since. Granted, “Japanese quirkiness” has become somewhat of a commodity, sold raw and wholesale to America-hating Americans, but the works of Artdink had the quality of games that were strange because of debilitating mental illness rather than gimmickry. And while this might be complete nostalgic fallacy on my part, uh… well… it isn’t. My own mental illness prevents me from accepting such a possibility.

No One Can Stop Mr Domino is a game that defies categorization, but if categorization were being particularly defiant in return, it would probably cave and call itself an action puzzler. What this basically boils down to is dominoes. No, not the game elderly black men play in the park, but real dominoes; placing the game pieces, in rows, on their edges and knocking one over, creating (if you invested adequate time into it) an elaborate chain reaction. [As an aside, am I the only one who remembers the Domino Rally line of toys?]

The game places you as a living domino – either the titular Mr Domino or the decidedly unfeminist Mrs Domino, with her stifling traditional values. You basically run around a circular track, strategically placing lines of dominoes at the press of a button. The dominoes just sit there, brimming with potential energy, until you make a loop around the track and knock one over, initiating the chain reaction. Assuming you placed the dominoes correctly the first time, this chain reaction will be glorious; vapid housewives will be knocked unconscious by boxing gloves (cleverly placed in microwaves), teddy bears will pass out from pedophiliac ecstasy upon seeing their prepubescent owners change clothes, elderly people will die, birds will shit, meteorites will fall from the sky – any manner of events will occur to continue the chain of domino-tumbling.

As one of the gender-specific living dominoes (plus a number of unlockable domino archetypes such as “Frenchman”), your task is very simple; place dominoes leading up to (marked) “trick switches,” and then resume your line of bones where the “trick” concludes (also marked). If it sounds complex, it’s because I have only a remedial grasp on “writing,” but rest assured that the game is quite simple. In fact, in the process of reviewing this game, I was able to beat it – and quite flawlessly – in about twenty minutes. This, after not having played the game for a number of years proves that either a) the game is simple and easy, or b) I’ve played it way too much.

Now we come to the point where I have to give the game a numeric (or, more accurately, pictorial) score. This is a task which proves extremely difficult, if not impossible. You see, this is almost certainly my favorite game for the so-called “Playstation One,” being popped in with quite a bit more regularity than it’s most beloved piers, Einhander and Abe’s Oddysey (reviews pending). Just as jurors who have prior relationships with the defendant are rejected from the judicial process, so possibly should my score be taken with a grain of salt (and, believe me, it was no easy feat not to give the game a perfect score). Also note that a quarter-point was added due to the fact that all the game’s endings involved your character committing suicide. And if the 90s taught us anything, it’s that suicide is cool.

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~ by Krooze L-Roy on October 21, 2008.

4 Responses to “No One Can Stop Mr Domino! (PS1) Review”

  1. Krooze! Come back to us! You’re more than welcome to copy/pasta your awesomeness onto HealingTouch. :)

    PS. I’ll be adding a little hyperlink affiliate button for Krooze Nest. Do you have a little button we can use?

  2. Are you insinuating Krooze is a ho?

    You talk to ME, you give HER the money.

  3. Krooze, I’m glad to see you blogging again.

    I love you.

    No homo.

    Oh and I managed to snag copies of Pro Pinball Timeshock and The Web and I have to say I really like The Web.

  4. Sure thing, Link. I’ll start gradually posting some of my better stuff over at your place. And I don’t have a button yet, but I can whip one up real soon.

    And please don’t get PG fired up. I never get any business when my face is all cut and bruised.

    Thanks for the support, Daniel. Yeah those games are real classics. I haven’t had the chance to do a piece on it yet, but be sure to check out Pinball Hall of Fame: Williams Collection next time you get the jonesin for some ball paddling. It’s phenomenal.

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