Launch games of all stripes have a pretty narrow premise; you launch some helpless critter or contraption for distance, buying upgrades to gradually improve your chances for ultimate success on later attempts. There aren't many ways to dress up this concept, so to stand out, I surmise, new launch titles are going to have to push the envelope thematically. Exhibit A is
Burrito Bison from Juicy Beast, in which you play a grim, roided-out minotaur in spandex briefs, kidnapped by the fascist oligarchs of Candyland to fight in their gladatorial combats, and resolved to launch himself with the combat ring's elastic ropes and propel himself to freedom, via grit, rocket shorts, and the gummi, pliable sproinginess of Candyland's fleeing citizenry. Top that, future launch game developers and purveyors of the bizarre!
You begin each launch attempt in the ring. Follow the spinning power gage at the top of the screen to determine the best time to launch, then click your mouse. Monitor your speed with the gage at the bottom left corner of the screen as you bounce and fly towards exodus. You will slow down if you hit solid ground or heavily-armored Candy-cops instead of squishy gummi-folk; to prevent this, click again to use one of your limited number of body-slams, which will recharge as you squash the panicked mobs of Candyland. Other power-ups will appear on the screen that will aid you in your flight for freedom, and you can purchase other power-ups and upgrades between launch attempts with cash recovered from squished Candylanders during your rampage.
On the one hand, for a light, casual title, Burrito Bison takes a long time to get to where you feel like you're getting somewhere. This adds to the game time, but like shoulder pads, or extra breadcrumbs in meatloaf, it increases the size but not the substance of the experience. On the other hand, Burrito Bison takes part in the trend of launch games where the player does more than hit the launch button and get a snack while the game plays itself. A mouse click here or there is all the game asks for, but that's all it takes to make the game a more involved experience than the typical launch title. This, combined with the game's giddy premise and EXTREME presentation, means that despite the grinding and repetition, I found myself firing launch attempt after attempt and enjoying it. Burrito Bison succeeds as a wacky bit of breaktime fun, for everyone's inner musclebound man-cow determined to squash all challengers.