Fads come and go, but sometimes they become video games along the way. One fad that is popular with kids nowadays are these little rubber band toys called “Silly Bandz” (and various off-brand knock-offs). They are rubber bands that fit around your wrist and can snap back into a silhouette shape. They’re collectable, tradable, and inexpensive, and that’s why they’re so popular. So how on earth did they make a video game out of this? You’ll just have to read on to find out.
In the Silly Bandz video game, Silly Bandz critters are imprisoned in cages and chests, and you must rescue them. The Silly Bandz are trapped behind stacks of blocks, and you must pull back and snap rubber bands to knock down the various building blocks surrounding them. You have a limited supply of rubber bands in each level, and if you use them all before saving the caged critters, you must start the level over again.
Judging the angle and strength of how you fire your rubber bands reminds me of a simplified version of Scorched Earth. Use the stylus to pull back the bands like a slingshot, and move around the stylus to adjust your angle of fire. Lift the stylus off the screen to let go and send the band flying. One handy feature is the game will show you the angle and strength of your last throw, so you know not to use that same angle again. While firing, you can collect coins, treasures, and extra bands to boost your score.
The rubber bands come in different colors and shapes. Yellow bands are the weakest, while blue ones are stronger and red ones can take out the toughest blocks. There are other bands that have special powers, too. Like star shaped bands, which can split into multiple bands if you tap the touch screen while they’re in mid-air. Blocks and obstacles come in different colors and shapes, too. Just like the bands, yellow blocks are weak while red ones can take a beating. Other blocks explode on contact or can make your rubber band projectiles stick to them.
You can view your rescued Silly Bandz and even find out which pack you can buy them in. And a two player mode rounds out the game. But as fads tend to be forgotten with time, so will this game, as it’s not that much fun. Really the best part of this game is it comes with some real life exclusive Silly Bandz in the shapes of various joysticks and gaming controllers!
Reading skill is helpful for the text instructions, but not totally necessary since most of the game is easy enough to figure out just by playing. Besides, a lot of the instructions are poorly written, and I had to fumble around a bit myself. I didn’t realize at first that you must use the little tree branch to pull and snap your rubber bands, for instance. While it is an easy enough game, I think even the most rabid Silly Bandz fans will get bored with it quickly. At least it’s fairly inexpensive and comes with some of the bands, too. Silly Bandz is rated E for Everyone.