Bakugan Battle Brawlers: Battle Trainer

Toy-and-cartoon spinoff provides surprisingly brainy fun.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

If you want your Bakugan to do well in their matches, you need to not only train them well at home, but also care for them by petting them and playing with them. Characters in the game also make a point of saying that intelligence is just as important as strength.

Positive role models

Dan and his friends treat the Bakugan well and worry about the creatures when they're in danger. The game may be built around fighting, but the heroes are only using that fighting mechanic to save the world.

Ease of play

Bakugan is a relatively simple game to pick up and play. There are not many rules to learn and the controls here are no problem at all. Some of the training exercises are a bit more challenging, but they start off simple and get gradually more difficult as the player's experience grows.

Violence & scariness

Some Bakugan creatures wield weapons, like swords, spiked clubs, and even a laser cannon. But the fighting in the game is depicted only with one Bakugan making a swipe in the air, followed by animation of the losing opponent falling down. The only time physical contact is ever shown is in a split-second shot of a punch during the opening cinematic sequence (which is made up of scenes from the Bakugan cartoon). It's also worth noting that none of the combatants ever die. They just lose the battle and come back for the next one.


The hero, Dan, is a big fan of calling his enemies "freaks." He also says once, "This bites."


This game connects to the vast Bakugan media empire, which includes toys, games, cartoons, books, etc. The game also expects players to be familiar with the TV show, as it contains trivia questions based on specific episodes.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that despite its violent-looking trappings (the word "battle" appears twice in the title), Bakugan Battle Brawlers: Battle Trainer is a strategy game at heart. The training exercises test a players reflexes, but the "battles," which are the core of the Bakugan experience, are entirely strategic. Parents should also be aware that the game is intimately tied to the Bakugan Battle Brawlers animated series, which unlike the game, does depict direct physical violence in its combat scenes.

Kids say

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What's it about?

The storyline to BAKUGAN BATTLE BRAWLERS: BATTLE TRAINER is an adjunct to the overall plot to the Bakugan Battle Brawlers TV series, which focuses on Earth kids who discover little balls that unfold to become alien creatures. In this particular tale, a villain has kidnapped and hypnotized all the Bakugan on Earth, except one, and the hero, Dan, must free them all by traveling to the bad guy's space station and defeating him in a series of strategic Bakugan battles, each of which will win him back one of the stolen creatures. In between battles, Dan trains and cares for the Bakugan back on Earth.

Is it any good?


Kids who are already in love with Bakugan will be easily thrilled by Bakugan Battle Brawlers: Battle Trainer. But this game can be just as fun and exciting for players new to Bakugan world. The game can be played -- and won -- with simple strategic planning, as each battle is based on pitting the right creatures against one another and playing the right bonus cards at the right times. But being easy does not mean you sacrifice the fun. As you gain more Bakugan, your strategic options increase and the game becomes automatically deeper and more multi-leveled. The ability to train your Bakugan and earn them new powers allows for customization, variety, and even more chances for tactical planning. The biggest flaw with this particular game is that it's for solo players only -- Bakugan is inherently a multiplayer concept, so it feels like a loss to not even have a two-player option here.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about media franchises and synergistic marketing. If you like a Bakugan game, are you more likely to want to watch the TV show? Or to buy Bakugan toys? Can you enjoy the game without those other things?

  • Is every product branded with a favorite character just as worthy of purchase? How do you know which products are genuinely good and which might be exploiting your love of the franchise?

Game details

Platforms:Nintendo DS, Nintendo DSi
Available online?Not available online
Release date:March 29, 2010
ESRB rating:E for Mild Fantasy Violence (Nintendo DS, Nintendo DSi)

This review of Bakugan Battle Brawlers: Battle Trainer was written by

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent of a 14 year old Written bydjk rockz April 9, 2010
age 14+

djk rockz bbyz

umm i love it
What other families should know
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking


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