Review: Awesome Ball – Breakout with a twist

Awesome Ball [gmc | yyg] takes the basic breakout concept and adds in the power of changeable gravity fields which act upon the ball.  The gravitational fields which act upon the ball are controlled by the player and are changeable at any time – through careful adjustment of these the ball can be swung towards particular bricks.

Changeable gravitational fields are the only real difference from a classic game of breakout and its many clones.  There are a variety of different block types, some which are stronger than others, and power-ups including lasers, extra lives and extended bat length.

With 4 difficulty modes and 25 levels Awesome Ball is strangely addictive, and also popular.  The game has a 4-star rating at YoYo and has received praise such as “one of the best brick breaking games I’ve ever played” and “probably the greatest brick-breaking game”.  After reading those opinions you might be expecting a fully-flourished and smoothly implemented game with well-designed graphics, however there are couple of issues that taint this view.  

Firstly the graphics are very basic.  In a game like this you would expect simple graphics, however I was disappointed with some of the graphics – particularly the powerups, where the type of bonus was not always identifiable until it had been collected.  

When running the game you are not prompted to select a difficulty setting, but you must first configure this or the game will not run – an annoyance that occurs each time you want to start a new game.  You are also unable to use the QWERTY characters on your keyboard to enter your name on the highscores table, and instead must use the up and down arrows to scroll through the available letters and then press Enter before moving on to configure the next letter in your name.

That said, despite these minor irritants, this is a good fun arcade-style game that adds a twist to the classic.

What do you think?

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