Boom Street Reviews

Boom Street Review

Boom Street Review

It's-a me, Bernie Madoff!

"Guys, after we've finished drinking Mojitos, betting on the wasp races and torching double decker buses for the evening, who wants to come back to mine to play Boom Street, a Wii-based Monopoly variant in which you can buy and sell shares as well as purchasing and upgrading properties?"

Boom Street, I suspect, is going to be something of a hard sell to your peers - regardless of how much you all like a trip to the wasp races. Mario, Luigi, your Miis and even the Dragon Quest gang are all present and correct, but this is no party game collection. There are mini-games, but they're brief, rare and generally rather dull. There are boards themed around Yoshi's Island and Delfino Plaza, but the colour and flair is all cosmetic. Beneath it, Boom Street is a surprisingly complex turn-based affair based on the intricacies of the financial markets. It takes a very long time to play a single match, its depths aren't immediately apparent, and the best way to learn what to do is just to get stuck into one of the ponderous tutorials and embrace your confusion.

If you play by the easy rules, it's actually fairly straightforward. Boom Street is about making money and, as with Monopoly, your job is to move around a board buying properties - shops, on this occasion, rather than entire city blocks - while hoping that your rivals land on them, at which point they'll have to give you some of their cash. Instead of passing Go, you have to pass the Bank, and if you've collected one of each of the playing card suits that are scattered around the board as you make your circuits, you'll get to level up, earning a nice bonus pay-out in the process. Eliot Spitzer would be extremely annoyed if he noticed that. He won't, of course, because he's knee-deep in Manhattan prostitutes.

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