I remember my first experience with Breakout game. I was about nine, and it was running on an ancient UNIX server at my Dad's office. It had bog standard ASCII graphics, and no sound, but it hooked me in. There's something about bat, ball and brick gameplay that makes it universal. Nowadays. Breakout clones have come a long way. The latest release of Megaball is now commercial, adding more still to the list of game goodies. It's these goodies which set Megaball apart from its Breakout-clone friends.
The basic gameplay is still just a case of hit the ball and bash out the bricks without letting the ball drop off the bottom of the screen, but Megaball doesn't stop there. There are a plethora of powerups that can drop down after you whack out a brick. Some make the ball slower. Some make you bigger (or smaller). Some let you shoot. Some even make you dead (gotta watch those!). There's heaps more though; in total 14 different good, bad (or terrible) things can happen. But wait folks -there's more! In Megaball the bricks are just as interesting as the power-ups. Sure, there's the usual coloured bricks that don't do anything much, and there are the indestructible gold bricks, and there are even the multi-hit bricks.
I've yet to come across many breakout clones with exploding bricks though. These were introduced into Megaball with version 3. and now the author has taken it one step further, adding different types of exploding bricks - some now make more bricks when they blow up. Version 4 has spawned some other new bricks as well as the exploding breeders. Key-and-lock type bricks hit one brick to open up a section of the level), and even amoeba bricks, which slowly fill the level if you let them.
The gameplay itself is also excellent, both with ECS and AGA (which is simply prettier). The sound is as good as you're likely to be able to get away with in a Breakout, and the music's OK too. This version has 20 tunes included, as well as details of how to make your own. On the subject of rolling your own, the latest version is supplied with a level editor, so you can construct your own set(s) of levels in your spare time if you arc so inclined. It's very reminiscent of the old classic Lode Runner. The level editor was only previously available to registered users of the shareware version. If you're about as creative as a stone, don't worry - there are enough levels supplied ready to go to keep you occupied for ages, including my favourite, "Boom!", which features many silly levels containing far too many exploding bricks.
All up, MegaBall 4 is another chapter in the great Breakout saga, and a good one at that. If you were ever into any of the previous versions of Megaball, and never got around to registering, this is the easy solution. If you love Breakout clones, download it - you'll like it.
This is a very nice, colourful Arkanoid clone. You have many extra things to pick up, you can blast the bricks, enlarge your paddle, use guns, etc. Very nice game with cool music and graphics.
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