Pucca Power Up (Nintendo DS) Review

By Mike Mason 13.05.2011 3

Review for Pucca Power Up on Nintendo DS

Korean series Pucca’s tale of a girl with Herculian strength - Pucca herself - and her attempts to snatch a smooch and the heart of ninja Garu has captivated many since its creation. Its popularity has been cemented with the release of several video games, including Nintendo DS title Pucca Power Up. Is it an addition to the growing franchise that fans will appreciate, or does it fall as flat as the 2D animation on which it is based?

Despite taking on the all-too-typical form of many a-licenced game, the good old side-scrolling platformer, Pucca Power Up does not rest upon the sales potential almost guaranteed by its licence’s wide-stretching audience alone. Developers Barunson Creative have delivered a video game that standards firm on its own merits. While far from being an original design, Pucca Power Up shows itself to be a solid example of the platforming genre at each turn.

Gameplay switches between Pucca and Garu, with the two sharing abilities such as jumping and projectile attacks, though Garu gets to use a sword and shurikens like the ninja he is, as opposed to Pucca’s pan and arrows. Pucca Power Up as a whole is varied enough to retain interest; platforming, leaping around to hit levers to open new areas, and collecting items are the main orders of the day, but this is broken up by mini-games between some stages, such as a Frogger-like game that dares you to dart across rapids on moving logs, and boss encounters that force you to be a little more strategic with your jumping. Some stages have more of a puzzle air about them, too, with mazes of doors to be traversed before you find the switch that slides open the blockade into the next section.

Screenshot for Pucca Power Up on Nintendo DS

Pucca’s image, products and TV show have generally been accepted by young girls and boys in their droves, which makes the direction taken for Pucca Power Up ever-so-slightly mystifying. It’s a surprisingly challenging title once the early stages are out of the way, crediting players’ skill levels rather than pandering to them with an easy ride. The reasonably generous health bar, and regular items to top it up, fights off any frustration that this may cause, however, and each of the large stages is split into sections that also act as checkpoints, so losing a life doesn’t throw you too far back. Collect a number of chili peppers to fill a power meter and you can temporarily go into a crazy, all-flaming invincible state with a tap of the touch-screen in those more difficult moments, too.

A playthrough of Pucca Power Up’s main game will last a good number of hours, but then there is also unlockable content to digest. Orange figurines are hidden around the levels, and these can be spent in the shop accessible on the Super Mario Bros.-style map screen on new stages, health extensions and other goodies. You can also buy the right to view the cutscenes or play the mini-games from the main menu. Each of the six worlds’ stages can be revisited at your leisure upon completion, so there is always ample opportunity to go back and search for any figurines you might have missed.

Screenshot for Pucca Power Up on Nintendo DS

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

It may not be the most original game, but Pucca Power Up is a quality platformer that does good service to its parent franchise and fans. Pucca Power Up will have youngsters occupied for quite some time, and there’s plenty of play for the older gamer too.


Barunson Creative


Rising Star


2D Platformer



C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date TBA   Japan release date TBA   Australian release date TBA   


Holly player (guest) 13.05.2011#1

So nice game that I expact to play.

corbu (guest) 14.05.2011#2

Really cute!!

Tao (guest) 20.05.2011#3

I just looove this game! It reminds me of the best time of the old game boy times =)

try it and buy it!

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