Review by Robot2600
Namco strikes gold blocks!
If you haven't played Mr. Driller you really owe it to yourself to give the series a try.
Basically you dig down destroying blocks in an attempt to reach the bottom of the stage. If a block crushes you, you die. If you run out of air (time) you die. Along the way you pick up air capsules. Blocks also disappear if 4 or more of the same color fall or touch each each other while at least one is falling... the combos are hard to explain but you'll get the idea almost immediately.
Mr. Driller W has several levels, each with 3 difficulty settings. Each difficulty is like an entirely new level because the playing fields are radically wider on expert, and very narrow on easy. The expert levels are truly huge, bigger than anything else in the Mr. Driller series.
There are 7 characters to play as, each with their own voice and special abilities. Some characters are faster, but consume air quicker. Some can jump up 2 blocks instead of 1, and one can be hit twice before dying. The characters add even more variety to an already great game.
What IS missing, however, is other modes. You only have the stages to play through, though each stage does feel very different from the others. One stages has a lot of disappearing blocks, another has a lot of "white" blocks which wont attach or combo (these can be extremely dangerous).
The highlight of the game are probably the 2 endless levels (technically 6 when you count difficulties) which allow you to drill to your heart's content. One of these stages is easier than the other, and that's one of the best features in the game: the learning curve has been greatly reduced providing new players with easier access to the series. New players can play the easiest stage on the easiest difficulty with the easiest character (the robot) and learn the mechanics before moving on to something more challenging.
However, if you are a hardcore fan don't be deterred, because the expert difficulty is by far harder than the previous games.
Other features include: local leader board, 5 save files, unlockable stages and an unlockable character who plays quite differently than the others (I won't spoil it in this review). The game doesn't track stats like Mr. Driller 2 for the GBA, but it does track time.
Finally, all 4 control schemes are supported (wiimote, classic controller, GCN controller, and wiimote+nunchuck) which is an important feature lacking on many games.
For 8 dollars it's the best bargain in the series, I highly recommend it to everyone.
Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Product Release: Mr. Driller W (US, 08/24/09)
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