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Arkanoid (NES) artwork

Arkanoid (NES) review


"Arkanoid goes by many names. Some call it Breakthru. Some call it Hit the Wall. Still others call it, “that game with the ball and paddle where you break the blocks but it's not Pong.” Whatever you personally decide to call it, Arkanoid is proof that you don't need complicated gameplay, graphics, or sound to deliver fun. "



Arkanoid goes by many names. Some call it Breakthru. Some call it Hit the Wall. Still others call it, “that game with the ball and paddle where you break the blocks but it's not Pong.” Whatever you personally decide to call it, Arkanoid is proof that you don't need complicated gameplay, graphics, or sound to deliver fun.

In Arkanoid, you play the role of The Paddle. Formerly, not much was known of the shadowy life of The Paddle, but with recent advances in the field of Paddlecology, we can now make some safe assumptions. The Paddle led a fairly stable life, up until the point that The Ball was introduced. At this time, the development of The Paddle takes a drastic turn. It is torn between its simultaneous feelings of hate and desire towards the ball. It is a classic love story, with obvious romantic overtones.

Arkanoid is rather simple to play. You control a paddle that moves from left to right at the bottom of the screen. The object of the game is to keep the ball moving vertically and horizontally while not letting it fall into the chasm at the bottom of the screen. However, each stage is full of blocks. You must knockout all of these blocks with the ball to advance to the next level. There are also enemies, ranging from flying saucers to witches, swirling about in an attempt to eat your ball. Points are awarded for blocks knocked out and enemies defeated.

A simple concept delivered effectively is what makes Arkanoid so fun. While you're knocking out these blocks, power-ups drop from them. There are over ten different power-ups. Included are a laser beam, multi-balls, an instant warp to the next level, and paddle length extenders.

The graphics present in Arkanoid are also kept wonderfully simple. They are clean and clear, with bright images. Your small gray ball bounces off the walls, striking against the vibrantly colored brick walls and ricocheting off flying saucers. Amazingly, there is no slowdown, even when multiple balls and enemies crowd the screen.

The only flaw in Arkanoid is the replay value. If it doesn’t catch your appeal within the first five minutes of playing, then additional playing will do nothing to alleviate your suffering. There are no really significant variations, just slight increases in speed and block pattern from stage to stage.

Arkanoid is an outstanding game that deserves a spot in your gaming library. I highly recommend it. If you like puzzle games like Dr. Mario and Tetris, then it’s a safe bet that you can find a place in your heart for Arkanoid.

Rating: 9/10

sgreenwell's avatar
Community review by sgreenwell (Date unavailable)

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