For my first Wii U Game of the Month for 2016, I have chosen to feature a Virtual Console game. Originally released on the Game Boy Advance, this action platformer was developed by Game Freak. The original GBA title was only released in Japan and America, but this Virtual Console title has been released on Japan and Europe – in fact, the European release date was January 7th 2016.
In Drill Dozer you take control of Jill, who pilots a Drill Dozer robot. Jill is the daughter of the boss of the Red Dozers, a friendly gang of thieves. However, her dad was ambushed by the evil Skullker gang, and they stole her precious Red Diamond.
Whilst her father recovers, Jill is tasked with leading the Red Dozers, defeating the Skullkers and retrieving her Red Diamond.
The game’s controls are simple: the +Control Pad moves you around, A is for jump and B is for performing actions. Naturally, you will be drilling a lot. This is done with the shoulder buttons – the R button spins it one way, and the L button the other. If you press the opposite shoulder button whilst drilling, you’ll launch yourself backwards a bit. Also, whilst the drill is spinning, you will deflect bullets – missiles and bombs are a different story, though.
As you play through the levels, you will find gears. You can carry up to three gears, which allows you to shift up – this increases the power of your drill – this is done by holding one of the shoulder buttons until you see the words ‘SHIFT UP!’ appear on the screen. When that happens, you have to release the button for a split second, then hold it again to shift up. For the first and second gears, the drill spins for a limited amount of time, but once you activate third gear it keeps going for as long as you want.
However, every time you start a new level you will be dropped back down to one gear, meaning you’ll have to hunt for some new ones if you want to shift up.
As you play through the game, you’ll find chips in levels. This is the game’s currency, which you can use in the shop in order to upgrade your Drill Dozer – this could be with Energy Tanks (more health) or even stronger drill bits.
You will also gain equipment that allows you to operate underwater or in the air as you play through the game.
Also scattered throughout the game are treasure chests, which are often hidden in hard-to-reach areas that may even require new upgrades to get to.
A neat game from Game Freak that I have enjoyed so far. Definitely worth looking into if you’re a fan of action-platformers.