Super Bomberman R 2 keeps getting in the way of your fun despite good ideas and classic gameplay

Having spent a bit more time with Super Bomberman R 2, it’s clear to see Konami are invested in its future.

Between dropping Seasonal content, the support of Konami characters – and that’s a pretty sizeable roster, don’t forget – as well as the option to download levels from players around the world, they want you to be playing this game months into the future.

The story mode, as we already said, is an interesting pivot away from what we’re used to with Bomberman and while it can be a bit on the repetitive side, it’s still an entertaining diversion and a cool way to explore a very familiar feeling game in a new way. I’d love to see this developed and evolved even further for future games.

But beyond that, oh boy…there’s definitely some mistakes being made here. For one, we’re barely weeks from launch and finding an online game is already more of a challenge than it should be. And that’s with crossplay…

Another is the bizarre decision to put modes on rotation behind time slots within the Graded Matches, meaning you can’t just play the modes you want to play at any given time. You’ll have to wait until the window of allotted time to dive into a match of Battle 64, Standard or Grand Prix.

Sure, when you play offline or privately, you can do whatever. But a lot of people are going to want to test their skills against the best and build up their rank as much as possible. Especially given it adds to your earnings and grades you on individual modes. As well as lets you work towards certain challenges and earn gems.

But also the game’s insistence on pushing the awful Castle Mode just really holds it back. Between shoehorning it into the campaign and making it the predominant way to play in online multiplayer, is really offputting. Arguably, it’s the most unenjoyable, confusing online multiplayer experience I’ve ever had. Sadly the more time I spent with it, the less enjoyable I found it.

There’s so much Konami got right with this one. The opportunities for customising your bomber are endless, you can add cool effects to your bombs, wear a cowboy outfit, pretend to be Simon Belmont and even throw out a wide range of taunts and catchphrases. Even the bombers have unique abilities which can be brought into play and have meaningful impact on choosing your favourites.

As an example, during a Battle 64 game I had my Bean Bomber and timed a beautiful jump onto a block to escape danger which led to another bomber getting caught in the space I was occupying and caught in the crossfire of their own bomb. These are the kind of smart little innovations that freshen up the formula just enough without deviating too far from what works in the first place.

Castle Mode is just too far removed from that, having you set traps that don’t really work and forcing you to protect a wide open space which you can’t feasibly do alone in the face of your opposition. The balance is off and it just fails to really grip you. Rather, it serves to frustrate.

But fortunately, you can make plenty of your own fun here, with a surprisingly elaborate level editor that really lets you fine-tweak and tune the experience to your liking. Or you can take someone elses’ level out for a test drive by downloading, liking and adding to your rotation.

The UI to get around is quite convoluted and feels a bit information-heavy at times. Looking at games like Dreams or Humanity, it’s a lot more streamlined with a focus on visuals. It also doesn’t seem to be set up well for discoverability with only the top ranked levels featured and no other categories.

Fortunately, there are tags which might help you to find levels you connect with and you can find comments which help you determine what others are thinking about the levels, And having the feature at all is extremely welcome and is surely going to keep the game active and alive over the longer term.

My favourite moments with this game have undoubtedly been minus the Castle Mode and just playing good old fashioned classic or Battle 64. The story mode, while enjoyable at first gets a bit grindy, and there’s real questions to be asked about rotating modes, not allowing players to just play what they want in the grand stage.

On the whole though, Super Bomberman R 2 is a real mixed bag that can offer so much fun, so much possibility and the classic game modes you know and love. But not everything works as it should, not everything is particularly enjoyable, and this is a game already struggling to find a playerbase, which, for a full priced release, may be enough to give you some pause.


Super Bomberman R 2 does so many things right, but also just enough wrong to be a bit of a mixed bag. Between the awful Castle Mode, the confusing rotation on multiplayer modes, the clunky UI with limited discoverability and, at times, repetitive story mode, you end up disengaging from the experience just when you’re finding your fun. My favourite moments came when diving into the classic modes, using the new bombers and their abilities, and experimenting with iconic Konami characters. But the game seemed determined to cut me off from that time after time between shoehorning Castle Mode into the story and not letting me play the modes I want, when I want. A frustrating experience.  


+ Great bombing fun can be had with unique characters
+ So much customisation and level editing to keep this fresh
+ Story mode can be fun in doses


– Castle Mode is just not fun
– Rotating modes on timer in multiplayer
– Story mode eventually gets quite grindy

Super Bomberman R 2 is out now on PC, Xbox, PS5 and Switch

Code Kindly Provided by Konami for review purposes

Tested on PS5 

Our initial impressions can be seen here

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