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Chessplosion is like Bomberman but with chess pieces

It's chess, but the pieces are bombs, and you are a duck

Like so many others, I watched the Queen's Gambit recently and very much enjoyed it. I've never been that into chess, but it made the game exciting for someone clueless like me. But now that I've seen arcade puzzler Chessplosion, I do wonder if the show could've been elevated by transforming each chess piece into a bomb and the main protagonist into a small duck.

In Chessplosion you control a cute duck who hefts chess piece-shaped bombs onto its head. The aim of the game is simple: drop these pieces onto the board, create explosive chain reactions, and toast your opponents. But crucially - don't toast yourself in the process.

Each chess piece-bomb explodes in a manner similar to how they'd move. For example, drop a Rook and it'll explode in a cross shape, while a Bishop explodes outwards diagonally. Things get frantic when you pop multiple pieces down quickly, as you can imagine.

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Chessplosion has a number of modes, all of which look ace. There's one where pieces charge you down, so you've got to dodge out the way of their moves and plant bombs to get rid of them before they overwhelm you. Another has you destroying targets using a limited number of bombs, while there's one where you've simply got to survive waves of increasingly tricky bomb patterns. It all sounds very stressful, but this is offset by the music which is super jazzy and surprisingly calming.

I like the sound of Chessplosion's PVP modes too. You've got one on one fights, team battles, and even a Tennis Battle mode which has you throw bombs over a centre line for your opponents to dodge. Man, developer CT Matthews has absolutely packed the game full of splodey goodness.

Chessplosion arrives on Steam and this September and I can already tell I will be awful at it.

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