Caromble! (Crimson Owl Studios)

Caromble! (Crimson Owl Studios)

Like Caromble! on Facebook

Follow Caromble! on Twitter

Check out the official Caromble! Website

Give the developers feedback on the Steam Discussion Page

Buy your Early Access copy from the Steam Store page 

Fancy a rather destructive take on the brick break genre? Well, Caromble from Crimson Owl Studios has got you covered. The five members that make up this talented team of Dutch indie developers have apparently been working on the game for a few years already while also juggling other jobs, so clearly they are committed to getting it right!

Caromble sticks close to the basics of the genre, so you are given a paddle to control and must use it to bash around a sphere. Instead of simply using the sphere to break blocks though you get to smash apart crates and knock over drums thanks to the physics based gameplay. The way that the levels are designed means you will also have to learn how to curve the sphere and direct it towards ramps, conveyer belts and other obstacles. We like the fact that most levels require almost a bit of puzzle solving to complete and not just straightforward brick breaking.

This Early Access version we played contained two of the planned six chapters, each with four levels that are further divided into multiple playing areas. So far the level designs are great and you also get to engage in a boss battle at the end of each level. Players are awarded medals for speed runs and high scores, but it doesn’t look like the story is present yet. According to the store page it will involve fighting evil and freeing the corrupted world, which to us sounds like sufficient motivation to cause carnage. Also present so far are four unlockable “Skill” levels where you try for a high score on specific challenges, such as knocking down targets within a specified time or curving the sphere around an obstacle to score points.

It didn’t take us too long to get through the levels available so far in Early Access, but we definitely had a lot of fun doing so. The game still needs some optimization, but it already looks and plays great. Having to deal with pinball style bumpers and shifting playing fields keeps the gameplay interesting and we were looking forward to seeing what new challenges awaited in each area. The game features all the expected Breakout-style power-ups, such as paddle growing/shrinking, multi-balls and aim assists as well as some really harsh ones like the one that pixelates the visuals for a short while. The chapter 2 update also introduced “Focus” which is one of six planned super power-ups.

Visually the game looks good and we like the audio, although the music is a little on the mellow side. The controls also work well enough whether using a keyboard, mouse or controller. You simply need to move the paddle left or right to prevent the sphere from falling off the bottom of the screen and costing you a life. Holding down a button “charges” the paddle for an extra powerful shot, but you cannot move while charging.

We think fans of the genre will enjoy what Caromble! has to offer and this Early Access version provides a good indication of the direction that the developers are taking the game. We had a lot of fun with it and can’t wait to play the rest of the chapters.

Related posts

Freaking Meatbags (Wild Factor)

Freaking Meatbags is set in a world where puny humans are even lower on the food chain than lowly cleaning robots. You don't play as a human in the game though, but as the lowly cleaning robot, named Chip by the way, who has to wrangle the meatbags into performing some labor. Chip is given this unpleasant task after getting on the wrong side of his boss and to make matters worse, he is ordered to protect the humans under his command. This is not an easy feat seeing as his job is to gather resources from planets in a solar system that is on the brink of exploding. Then there is also the small matter of roving bands of wild robots that attack at night.

Brigador (Stellar Jockeys)

Brigador (Stellar Jockeys)

Brigador, an Early Access title from Stellar Jockeys, challenges you with the task of liberating the city of Solo Nobre. At your disposal is a selection of tanks, mechs and antigrav vehicles, but standing in your way are the factions occupying the city. Whether you opt to go in all guns blazing or sneak in stealthily while picking off your targets, your mission remains the same, clear the city or die trying.

Lichdom: Battlemage (Xaviant)

Books and movies always portray mages as powerful and nearly unstoppable, but when it comes to gaming it usually only takes one or two hits from a lowly Kobold before your mage is out of action. Even if they do manage to avoid getting killed in the first few minutes of battle they are rendered useless after only a few powerful spells because their mana is depleted.

Friendship Club (Force Of Habit)

Friendship Club (Force Of Habit)

Young Timmy Bibble is a boy with a very active imagination and he uses it to make his four imaginary friends battle each other. Ranging from a mountain beast and crazy old prospector to a duck and ninja-bandit-skeleton-thing, these characters are ready to kill each other for their spot by Timmy’s side. As far as storylines goes it’s pretty wacky, but then again who needs an excuse for some good old fashioned arcade action.

Blockstorm (GhostShark)

Blockstorm (GhostShark)

First person shooters are a dime a dozen these days and Minecraft has spawned its fair share of imitators. There have even been a few titles that combine the two genres, but Blockstorm is definitely the first time that the combination has been pulled off this well.

Nom Nom Galaxy (Q-Games. Ltd.)

He who controls the soup controls the galaxy. That is why, as a worker for Soup Co. it is your mission to keep the soup flowing. It appears that the galaxy doesn't particularly care what the soup is made of either as you can slap together just about anything to make some. The local wildlife obviously objects violently to being turned into a soup and Soup Co. also has powerful rivals so you have your work cut out if you want to survive this cut-throat business.

Leave a comment

6 − 4 =