Darkstar’s Aceball Indie Game Review
Sorcery Games’ Aceball is an enhanced Pong indie game. I don’t say this as a bad thing, no I thought this game was great. Now I’m sure you’re saying why do I want a Pong game for. Well, if you say you absolutely hate paddle games then there is probably not much I can say to change your mind. I’ll try though.
Aceball has two modes, single player and multiplayer which supports 4 players. This was a very nice addition to the game. Also it’s not just about getting the ball past your opponents paddle. The game has a point system, so depending on how you play, whether for points or to get to the next stage it has a little for both playing styles.
In single player arcade mode, the stages vary from the first stages layout of the standard paddle table. The other stages start to change it up with walls extending off the table that could cause the ball to come back at you much quicker than expected. That is not all, it also has stages with breakable bricks on the stage similar to a game of breakout, except your still trying to get the ball past the opposing paddle. Another addition to this game is the floating heads and little aces. When the ball hits a head it racks up points and bounces that ball off the head. While the joker head can be the most dangerous one to hit since it appears that hitting this head can send the ball off in any wild direction and not the one you would expect. I love the randomness of it. Now the little aces the ball goes right over just adding points to your total. Some stages force you to juggle multiple balls and others don’t end until you knock a certain number of balls past the enemy paddle.
The multiplayer options are equally interesting. You can play you and a partner against the computer through the same stages in arcade mode. One players paddle is in the standard paddle position while your partner’s paddle is a farther up. This can be a good thing and a bad thing. My partner had the wonderful ability to put their paddle right in front of me when I bounced the ball forward causing it to come right back at me. So many balls lost this way, I felt like I just couldn’t handle my own balls. Anyway the other option sets two paddles on both sides and allows you to choose which side you will be on and the AI level of the computer paddle on your team. This is important since easy AI almost always seemed to get in my way more than it did help me.
So in closing, this game is better than your standard paddle game. It is a great deal of fun alone or with up to 4 players locally. It does have the downside of lacking a leaderboard to show how many points you racked up in comparison to others, but for local and single player play it is an acceptable loss. So get out there and pop some heads with those balls of yours. You won’t regret this purchase.
Final Score: 4/5