“ Manufacturer: Square Enix „
* Prices may differ from that shown
This review is for the Nintendo DS game, Arkanoid, developed by the Taito Corporation and published by Square Enix. The game involves knocking out blocks using a ball which you have to keep in play, and different forms of the game have appeared on most gaming systems.
The game has 140 levels to work through across five different worlds, which is a reasonable number to work through. You can choose to play the game in either the clear mode where you work through the game, or the quest mode. The quest mode is the same 140 levels, but each level has a specific challenge, so you are likely to want to play through the same levels again, so the principle does work. The levels get ever harder, although the difficulty level does appear to have been pitched at a sensible setting, possibly just a little bit too easy to begin with.
There is a control problem with this game though, insomuch as it's fiddly to have to use either the stylus or d-pad buttons to control the game. In the Japanese version of the game, an additional paddle type of hardware was included, so that the game was much easier to control. The omission of this has made the game much less useable, and it is frustrating to lose a life through control problems.
In terms of the display, the game uses the two screens of the DS as part of one larger screen, but this can be irritating, as there is a gap between the two screens, which in my view, rather impacted in the game play. Although in principle it's great to be able to use the two screens, the way this has worked is quite disappointing.
The graphics and the sound in the game are though rather good. There are lots of effects on the graphics which do add to the game, and the sound effects and the background music do definitely add to the atmosphere. These are both pluses to the game, and show a lot of thought has gone into the game.
There is a multi player function so you can play with friends, and this game is one which only requires one of the players to have a copy of the game. This part of the game works well, and it's nice to see the developers haven't taken the route that some others have of requiring everyone to have their own copy of the game.
The game retails at full price for 19.99 pounds, but is currently available on Amazon for just under thirteen pounds. If you're happy with a second hand copy, at the time of writing, these are available for just under ten pounds on sites such as eBay and Amazon. The game is rated 3+, so is suitable for children of most ages.
In summary, the game is based on a successful formula and it does work again and it is fun to play through all of the levels. However, controlling the game isn't as easy as it should be, and so overall, this does diminish the gaming experience somewhat and makes the game really just quite average. If you can get the game for a few pounds, it's reasonable, otherwise it seems just a bit expensive. If the decision to take the paddle out of the game hadn't been made, I suspect that this game would have been much better.
I think if you've been into computer games then you must have played Arkanoid or at least a similar version.
You have a big bouncy pad at the bottom of the screen and a ball, each level has different blocks above strategically built it's your mission like always to destroy or the blocks by bouncing back your ball.
Now I remember this being the first game I ever played back on the Commodore 64, there has been hundreds of alternate versions of this.
Arkanoid DS is made by Square Enix (Cough, cough makers of Final Fantasy), so you know it's going to be good.
You have the option of using the D-pad on the DS or your stylus, personally I prefer the D-pad but I think that's just because I'm old school.
Destroying certain blocks gives you power ups such as a sticky pad so you can relaunch your ball in other directions or bonus lives.
Overall this is a classic game redo really well for the DS id rate this game a 8 out of 10 because it can be bought so cheap and you can become so addicted to playing it.