Mr Driller Online

Namco hails Chilean miners, causes offence

Publisher pulls Mr Driller image, apologises.

Namco Bandai has removed an image of Mr Driller from its website that it created to celebrate the successful rescue of 33 trapped Chilean miners earlier this week.

Mr Driller Online

Mr Driller Online

Spelunker-dunk.

After several weeks of defending the besieged portcullis of casual gaming with precious little assistance from the parade of lazy mindless tat on Live Arcade, I've finally found a brave knight who can help me slay the dragon of Kneejerk Hardcore Gamers Who Are Scared Of Fun. And he's got a drill.

Mr Driller was last seen in Drill Spirits on the Nintendo DS back in 2004. That game made Tom use the words "you'll love it" and the numbers "8/10". Having been rejigged, reworked and redeployed to the 360, Mr Driller remains the sort of fast-paced puzzle gem all "casual" efforts should aspire to.

The concept, as with all great things, is dead simple. Superficially similar to Tetris, if only because you need to have a quick eye for shapes and how they'll interact when one is removed, the closest comparison would be a fusion of Boulderdash and Dig Dug. Hardly surprising, since the game began life as a continuation of Namco's underground monster-inflating classic. Mr Driller, should you care, is supposed to be the son of Dig Dug star Taizou Hori.

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