Siesta Fiesta review
If you’re going to fashion a game after arcade classic Breakout, Siesta Fiesta is the way to do it. Mojo Bones’ title isn’t another tired clone; it’s not some unofficial sequel or hybrid RPG – it’s a game that takes the spirit of Breakout, and looking further back, the spirit of pinball, and reworks their core concepts into something new. Something inspired, even.
In place of a paddle, you have a springy bed. In place of a ball, you have a bouncy sleeping baby. Put the two together and the baby will rocket into the sky – a useful outcome if, like the tiny star of Siesta Fiesta, your nightly snoozes are often interrupted by columns of colourful piñatas.
Breakout’s DNA is evident in the way you move the bed (left and right with the Circle Pad or the stylus), and in the way you have to hit it at its corners to send baby flying east or west, but there’s a great deal of pinball in there too. Physics are important: apply a little force to your bounce with an extra button press and your offspring will ricochet around the screen with a faintly terrifying zeal.
In one sense, this is a forgiving game. You’re allowed up to five mistakes – ‘mistakes’ here mean letting the baby crunch into the ground – before a restart occurs, but considering the amount of zesty detritus cluttering the playing field, keeping track of your charge is easier said than done.
Siesta Fiesta shifts away from familiarity with its assortment of stage types – sidescrolling ones being the overwhelming norm. The goal of these trips is to accrue as many points as possible, by flinging baby at blocks, busting piñatas for big points, collecting stray goodies and avoiding nasty skull-and- crossbones blocks, while the level automatically scrolls around you. Couple this strict auto-scrolling with the decision to section stages into an octet of garishly themed worlds, and there’s a real mid-’90s platformer vibe emanating from the game.
The scoring system adds to this feeling, doling out a bronze (you get this just for showing up), silver, or gold medal based on your performance, though be warned/excited that bagging a gold will take no small amount of block-busting skill. Surprisingly, the game also manages to squeeze in a few boss fights along the way. Who would have thought that a Breakout-style title could pack in quite so much variety?
The important thing to note about Siesta Fiesta is that the moment-to-moment boinging and block-breaking feel just about right, with a great sense of weight and momentum to the bouncing baby, satisfying visual and aural feedback after every incidence of destruction, and an adorable illustration style that recalls Ubisoft at their most Rabbidy. The already strong concept of a side-scrolling Breakout is soon embellished with all sorts of surprises which include light puzzle elements, power-ups, time trial stages, and a bunch of amusing replacements for the default bed sprite. All in all, we found it a joyously creative game.
Our only real gripe is that it can be a little tricky to discern player objects from busy background elements on occasion, but this is typically solved by flicking the 3D on for a little while – if you use a 2DS, this obviously won’t be possible, so be warned. Regardless, Siesta Fiesta is proof that there’s life in old ideas, and that inspiration doesn’t have to equate to cloning.