Belle Boomerang is a 2D platformer featuring a young lady with her ever trusty boomerang. With the King and Queen suffering from a horrible curse, she sets out on an adventure to remove the curse and bring back prosperity to her land!
Released: 2 July 2022
Belle Boomerang is heavily styled after NES games, along with gameplay mechanics and a difficulty scale that fits right in the 8-bit era of games. Belle’s only two moves in her arsenal include jumping and throwing her trusty boomerang a short distance away, but this is further expanded by obtaining various power-ups from enemies which allow her to pick up and throw items, shoot bubbles, possess statues, or even fly, among other abilities. In the levels, she can pick up bells to buy upgrades for her boomerangs, as well as find and collect 12 roses across the game’s world.
Although the first three levels are relatively easy, the game becomes progressively harder with each stage, thanks to the variety of enemies and hazards present. Thankfully the difficulty is balanced out with checkpoints, the ability to close the game and resume from said checkpoints, and infinite lives. Some of the later levels are boss fights, including multi-phase challenges!
After completing each stage or from the world map, Belle can return ‘backstage’ where she can talk with the inhabitants of the land and gain tips or otherwise listen to conversations. After going midway through the game, she also gains access to a village with yet more denizens.
Is the play worth it?
Belle Boomerang is graphically almost similar to a GameBoy Color, except with a lot more detailed and alive environments even with its minimal use of colors. You can find background elements like waterfalls, light seeping into dark areas, and constellations, all moving in some way or another, making the game feel a lot more immersive. The game often likes to switch between the letterboxed (with black bars on the side) and widescreen aspect ratios depending on the scenario; for example, areas which you must vertically climb are letterboxed.
The music isn’t just heavily environmental, but also dynamic, so the melody changes depending on which area Belle is in within the level – adding a lot of depth to the soundtrack in the process.
Belle’s Boomerang is a return to the 8-bit era with all its charm, visuals, music, and difficulty weaved with modern sensibilities such as checkpoints and collectibles. The game is challenging but also fair, never relying on fake difficulty, making Belle Boomerang a top pick if you want a retro game without cheap deaths. If that isn’t enough, you can always try the demo for the game!