Have you attempted the new game, “Bumble Beams” and labeled it as “one of those games I’ll never be able to master”? Bumble Beams is a game with a strange mix of strategy, luck and timing that makes it one of the most unique games on this site. If you’re having a bit of trouble with the game, hopefully this article can clear a few things up.
Oh no! The Robot Petpets have been wandering around and are now lost in the Recycling Centre! YOUR goal is to save as many of these wayward petpets as you can by maneuvering them on several beams in an effort to place them in recycling bins. As you progress further in the game, your margin of error will have to decrease because of limited resources and rusty equipment. Petpets that aren’t saved will be recycled, crushed and incinerated into ashes. As a renowned petpet saver, your job is to make sure this doesn’t happen!
Controls and Game Mechanics
In Bumble Beams, you will be required to shift petpets from one beam to another on a downwards journey to one of the recycle bins at the bottom, which are constantly moving to the left (eventually, the same bins will rotate again). The total amount of bins that will rotate is equal to the maximum number of petpets you can save. You will encounter several types of beams and develop preferences of which ones to use. There are no set paths that you must take to reach the bottom, as long as you do reach the bottom, that is. In between levels, you’ll be presented with a synopsis of the stage including a description of its treachery (only given in the first level of each stage) and the minimum number of petpets you must save to advance to the next level.
Bumble Beams will require a few key elements; control and timing. The controls are quite simple to learn, but hard to master. All you need to do is press your left arrow key if you want the beam (that the petpet is on) to shift to the LEFT (some exceptions later on) and the right arrow key if you want it to turn RIGHT (also some exceptions later on). You will have no containment over the petpet's movements if you ever make it to the Incinerator Stage.
Speaking of stages, Bumble Beams has three of them; a Sorter stage, a Grinder stage and an Incinerator stage. Each stage has its own individual levels where you’ll be presented with a minimum requirement to proceed to the next level.
Sorter: This is the first stage you’ll be presented with after beginning the game. Most of the beams that you’ll be working with are sturdy and well-supported. The recycle bins that rotate on the bottom move slowly, giving you ample time to position your petpet for its drop. There are few levels here that will require more than one or two tries to master. This stage serves as an introduction to the more difficult areas.
Grinder: After clearing the Sorter area, you move onto the next stage, the Grinder. Here, more beams are slippery and hard to control over, but you’ll sometimes have a few beams that will provide more support than others. Be prepared to balance some petpets while waiting for empty bins to come though.
Incinerator: The hardest stage in the game. Here, petpets are very much aware of the danger they’re in and as a result, you have less control over where they move. Beams are fragile and require much maneuvering to work. Good luck saving those petpets!
The Items and Power-Ups
Stars: The basic bonus item is the yellow star which can be mostly found on beams. These stars, upon being collected by the petpets, will grant you three additional points. Likewise, if you happen to collect a red star, you’ll receive ten points. Don’t sacrifice one of your petpets to get either of these, though; you’re better off trying to earn the points from getting them into the recycling bin and decreasing the chances that you’ll lose that level.
Springs/Bombs: Whatever you’d like to call them. They’re red flashing beams that’ll shoot your petpet up into the air where you’ll have little to no control over where they land. Generally, there are stars or other bonuses on them to entice you to drop your petpet on them. If you missed quite a few petpets that level, don’t bother with these; they’ll only hurt your chances of advancing.
Gears: I call these gears, but I’m not really sure what they are. They’re two colored blobs (blue and green) that each have different functions. The blue one will add 3 total petpet points onto your petpets saved which will give you additional points at the end of the level (more on the scoring later). Note that these gears WON’T count towards your actual petpets saved and that you’ll still have to save the appropriate number of petpets to continue. The green ones add one petpet saved point to your score and this WILL count towards your petpets saved; therefore, green blobs should be taken over blue ones. As always, don’t get either of them if you’re not performing well.
BASIC SCORING: Each time you drop a petpet into a bin (not containing a petpet yet), you will receive five points at the minimum. IF however, you drop a petpet into the bin and it lands “perfectly” in, straight in the middle, you’ll receive fifteen points (that’s three times the number of original points, people!). Note that getting one perfect petpet is equivalent to three imperfect ones, so it is imperative that you get as many of these perfect petpets in as you can.
ADVANCED SCORING: Every time you complete a level, you’ll receive bonus points equal to the number of petpets you save. So if you saved 13/15 petpets on a particular level, you’d receive 13 additional points, which can help in raising that score. Remember what I said earlier? Stars will grant you three or ten points, depending on the color. Because gears add points to your accumulative petpets saved total, you’ll also earn points if you collect those as well (assuming you complete the level you collect them on; otherwise, it’s wasted).
Tips and Tricks
Once you play the game a few times, you’ll see what Bumble Beams has to offer. At the time of writing, the game’s NP ratio is 1:1, so you’ll receive 1000 NP for, well, 1000 points. Here are a few pointers to help you make it easier and faster.
- ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS try to time your petpets so that they fall into the bins perfectly. The bonus for doing so is huge (ten more points PER petpet) and it will impact your score if you choose not to. Of course, getting them into the bin to begin with is the first priority.
- I find that the orange beams that have confusing directional controls are hard to manipulate. Try avoiding these if possible; release the petpets off of other beams. If you can’t avoid them, you can try holding either your left or right arrow key (hit the left key if you think the petpet will end up on the RIGHT side of the platform and the right arrow key if you believe the petpet will land on the left) after the petpet hits the beam and hope that the beam stays still. If it does, KEEP HOLDING. You can release your finger when a bin is right next to the beam and remember to time your release correctly!
- Balance is also important in this game. You may find it hard to balance the petpets on the beams as long as possible, but practicing this technique will only help you later on. Try and keep your petpet on one individual beam as long as possible without making it fall and when you think you can’t hold on any longer, let it drop to the next beam. Once you get to the harder stages, you’ll need to use this strategy to stall for time while waiting for an empty bin to show up.
- Try to give yourself point goals between levels. You aren’t really required to score a certain amount of points, but if you want a high score, you’ll have to be wary of your progress throughout the game.
- If you do get a great score, check the World Challenges and see if you can earn a map piece and some more Neopoints by participating in the challenge.
Good luck in your quest to save those petpets! Hope to see you on the High Score Table soon!