E3 is arguably one of, if not the biggest, events in gaming each year. We learn about new projects, consoles, games, technology and more at the event. B3 Game Expo For Bees is a game that uses E3 as a bit of a parody point and pokes fun at the industry as a whole. While the game manages to actually do quite a bit of things right, there is one major flaw that makes the game hard to fully recommend.
B3 Game Expo For Bees starts out with a simple but well-written story. The B3 Expo is getting ready to start, with all of the juicy secrets of the event ready to unfold, but a sneaky large bear, Robobear, can’t wait. He tries to hack into the hive (as you are a bee, everything takes place in a hive) and get the secrets before anyone else does. You, as a security bee, have to stop this from happening. It sounds simple, but the writing and dialogue is actually really well done and pokes fun at the video game industry as a whole, console development, and more. It’s very tongue in cheek, with tons of “bee” puns, but I enjoyed it.
The game draws heavy inspiration from the Metroid Prime series in terms of gameplay, graphical style, and music. Everything takes place in a first person (first bee?) perspective and is based on exploration and scanning things. Your security bee gets a weapon to handle enemies in the hive, and even the layout and life bar look a lot like Metroid Prime.
The graphics have a clean and solid design, with characters and environments looking quite nice. It’s not a technical marvel or anything, but it’s a good design for this style of game. The bee’s themselves look cartoon-y, but since it’s a light-hearted game, it’s more than likely what the developer wanted. The music compliments this as well, with some “Samus-like” vibes in some of the tracks.
The GamePad is used really well in the game too. The GamePad is a sort of a hub for all of your actions and activities, with unlockable things that require “bling” that you accumulate in the game to purchase. The GamePad also has a “live B3 chat” that helps with tips, information, and other things. It’s clever in design, really well done, and actually draws you into the game.
The problem with B3 Game Expo For Bees is that “game” is sort of a hard term to use for this. It’s more of a tech demo. Right when everything starts to click and you start enjoying yourself, the game abruptly ends. B3 Game Expo For Bees can easily be finished in under an hour, and maybe even under 30 minutes on a second playthrough. Aside from scanning everything in the game, there isn’t much point in revisiting the game, as you see everything the game has to offer in your one playthrough.
There are only 2 enemies you fight, the Robobear, and some circular things. It’s just such a strange decision to put time and effort into solid writing, decent graphics, and interesting GamePad use for a game that will last you a blink of an eye.
B3 Game Expo For Bees has a lot of potential, but the shortness of the game is just unacceptable. Considering the game is $9.99 on the eShop, if you are curious, I’d wait for a price drop. The presentation, graphics, controls, and atmosphere are well done, but the fact that the game is over before it really starts makes this a hard game to recommend.