Peggle Deluxe
Gameplay 9
Graphics 9
Sound 9

Like all the best puzzle games, Peggle Deluxe is almost insultingly simple to grasp, but once you get into it you’ll be hooked. It is horribly addictive and the whole package is just put together so well one can’t help but be charmed.

Gameplay: Very simple and very addictive.

Graphics: For a casual game, it is pretty good with some nice backgrounds.

Sound: The tunes are OK and the sound effects serviceable

Summary 9.0 Outstanding
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

Peggle Deluxe

Developer: PopCap Games, Inc. | Publisher: PopCap Games, Inc. | Release Date: 2007 | Genre: Casual | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

I have to admit that if it wasn’t for the free ten level version of Peggle called “Peggle Extreme” that is available on STEAM I would never have given Peggle a second glance. After rapidly working my way through Peggle Extreme I knew I had no choice but to get my hands on Peggle Deluxe, the 55 level commercial version of the game. Popcap has proven themselves to be masters of the casual games arena, most notably in the puzzle genre, but with Peggle DX they have outdone themselves.

Like all great puzzle games the idea behind Peggle is so simple you’ll at first wonder how on Earth it could be any challenge. Heavily inspired by Japanese “Pachinko” machines each board in Peggle has a certain number of coloured pegs on it arranged according to the lines of the whimsical background image. The blue pegs are just there as obstacles, but the orange ones need to be cleared to complete the level. The catch is you have to launch your ball from the top of the screen and any pegs it hits as it ricochets around the board gets cleared away. Once the ball falls down the bottom of the screen its gone, unless it lands in the “ball catcher” that systematically moves back and forth. Since you have no control over the ball catcher and only have a limited amount of balls (usually ten) you can see where things start to get tricky.

The gameplay is so involving that initially you’ll just be launching the ball directly at random nearby orange pegs in order to clear it, but once you have your head wrapped around the concept you’ll be using the blue pegs to bounce the ball off in order to hit as many orange pegs as possible on the way down and hopefully land in the ball catcher thus netting yourself an extra shot.

To help you out a bit there are ten “Peggle Masters” each with their own special powers that are activated when you hit one of two green pegs that are randomly placed on each board. Some will show you the angle your ball will bounce while others might give you  pinball flippers at the bottom of the screen or even blow up nearby pegs. They all have very limited uses, though, so don’t always count on them to get you out of a jam. Getting a very high score on a single shot will also net you a extra ball and when your ball goes off the screen you have a fifty percent chance of getting a retry ball, but all in all you need to plan your shots very carefully in order to get the most out of them.

The graphics are very basic and feature all kinds of unicorns, sunflowers, cats and other things that hardcore gamers wouldn’t want to be seen dead playing with but if you can overlook the cartoony, childish visuals you will find a game that is very challenging not to mention supremely addictive. In fact the game is so addictive that a special version was even included within the popular online RPG World Of Warcraft in order to keep players hooked. The audio is pretty low-key apart from the song “Ode to joy” that comes blaring out of the speakers when you hit the last orange peg on a level and the game goes into fever mode. During this time you have no direct control over the action apart from hoping your ball falls down the bucket with the highest point value that appears on the bottom of the screen.

Fifty five levels might sound like a lot, but Peggle is a victim of its own addictive gameplay and can easily be finished in a single day. At least the Adventure mode that is. Challenge mode should last quite a bit longer and then of course there is the duel mode where you can play against another player or a CPU opponent in a shot for shot contest to get the highest score. For casual players and puzzle fans Peggle DX is a no-brainer and even hardcore gamers brave enough to try out a game that looks like this might find themselves drawn into its addictiveness.

*Review originally published 2008.

System Requirements

  • Windows 98/ME/2000/XP/Vista
  • 256 MB RAM
  • 500MHz or faster
  • DirectX: 7.0
  • OS: OS X version Leopard 10.5.8, Snow Leopard 10.6.3, or later
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 1.66
  • Memory: 512 MB of RAM

Related posts

Alan Wake’s American Nightmare

Alan Wake's American Nightmare

American Nightmare offers more action and less atmosphere than the original game, but it is still a compelling addition to the series. With only three locations to explore it lacks the depth of the first game, but the story is still very interesting. It is important to remember that this is not a sequel, but a bite sized addition to the Alan Wake saga. Gameplay: A more action oriented approach than the original game. Graphics: Good but the wide open areas makes it less creepy. Sound: Overall good, but some of the voice acting could have been better.

Guilty Gear X2 #Reload

Guilty Gear X2 #Reload

While most fans would have loved to see a PC port of Guilty Gear Xrd, the latest installment in the series, appear on PC instead of #Reload, it doesn’t mean that it should be dismissed. This game still has just as much to offer as it did ten years ago and fighting game fans that somehow missed out on it are in for a treat. There are a ton of modes that will keep you busy for ages and the huge cast of crazy characters offer something for every fighting style. Considering its age the game has held up extremely well and hopefully garners enough interest to prove that there is a market for more of these games on PC. Gameplay: A huge character roster to select from and fast paced fights makes for an adrenaline pumping experience. Graphics: The visuals might be old and 2D, but they still look very impressive and the game is not afraid to take things over the top. Sound: Some of the character voices can become annoying after extended playing sessions, but the soundtrack is still great.

The Sun and Moon

The Sun and Moon

Don’t let the simple visuals fool you, The Sun and Moon is a devious platform title with a very interesting ground diving mechanic. Being able to jump into the ground means you’ll have to approach platforming in a whole new manner and makes for a challenging, but addictive experience. In addition to the arresting gameplay the game features a nice soundtrack by Dubmood and very responsive controls that keeps you in control of the action at all times. Gameplay: It takes a while to wrap your head around the ground diving mechanic, but it makes for a challenging experience. Graphics: Very minimal, but ensures that the focus is on the action. Sound: Some fitting tunes provided by Dubmood.

Contrast

Contrast

The visual style is what drew me to Contrast but the clever puzzles and wonderful atmosphere is what kept me playing. Each new location was genuinely interesting to explore and the concept of switching between 3D and 2D planes mean you have to think out of the box sometimes. The latest patch fixed most of the launch issues and the result is an entertaining and memorable experience. Gameplay: Switching between 3D and 2D to solve puzzles is a unique and interesting twist. Graphics: The locations are larger than life and very memorable. Sound: Great voice acting and a stellar soundtrack.

The Order of the Thorne – The King’s Challenge

The Order of the Thorne - The King's Challenge

The Order of the Thorne – The King’s Challenge offers a witty, entertaining and family friendly point and click adventure experience. The retro style visuals take a while to get used to, especially on larger monitors, but definitely captures the charm of the classics of the genre. As far as point and click adventures goes this one is rather straightforward, but definitely a lot of fun and well worth adding to your collection. Gameplay: The story and puzzles are relatively straightforward, but still very entertaining. Graphics: Looks like it was lifted straight from a nineties Sierra title. Sound: Great voice acting for all the characters and a nice orchestral soundtrack.

Solar Shifter EX

Solar Shifter EX

With its non-stop action and intense visuals, it is hard to believe that Solar Shifter EX is the work of a solo developer. The game is quite tough, but fans of bullet hell shooters will enjoy the challenge. The ability to shift around the screen definitely adds to the experience and while not perfect, Solar Shifter EX has a lot to offer fans of the genre. Gameplay: Very tough, but the inclusion of checkpoints makes the challenge more manageable. Graphics: Crank it up to “Extreme” and marvel at all the detail. Sound: Features some nice tunes, but the sound effects lacks a little punch.

Leave a comment

4 + three =