It’s a casual game with colors, rainbows and quirky animals. In this way, it’s obviously an object of despise for any self-respecting PC player. So, I pouted, I gritted my teeth and wiggled in discomfort during the hours I spend playing the game. I also enjoyed it quite a bit, but that’s completely unrelated to the fact that Peggle isn’t bloodthirsty enough for the daily needs of a hardcore gamer.
Luckily, despite the lack of violence, the game is not completely devoid of shooting. It’s actually the only thing that is expected of a Peggle player. You shoot balls out of your magnificent cannon placed atop of the gaming screen. There’s not much ammunition – you’ve got only ten balls – but personally, I find it to be an unrealistically spectacular amount of balls. Anyway, the goal of the game’s main mode is to destroy all orange peggles. Each of seventy five levels of Peggle is filled with peggles, but only the orange ones are the enemy. The others are either an obstacle in the way of a glorious success, or a helpful aid if one is skilled enough to plan the shots with a grand strategy in mind.
There are also magical green peggles and they represent the other important aspect of the whole puzzle. When hit, they produce powerful effects depending on the Master who is overseeing your game. These Masters are various strange-looking talking creatures with large eyes. They are presented in a cute, appropriate for children manner. As a grossly cynical and randomly random player, I believe the Masters to be drugged out of their earlobes (if present) and tripping balls (present). Again, I have no evidence of such misbehavior but that is my general impression based on speech patterns, pupil dilation and facial expression of the Masters.
Also, I believe it affects the player in some ways. You see, this is not a game about losing or gritty wallowing in self-pity. This is a game about winning, and anyone who has played a level of Peggle can surely attest to that. When you win a level, Beethoven’s Ode to Joy begins to gloriously roar, and a large “Extreme Fever” sign lights up in the middle of a screen. Then the ball falls to one of the baskets filled with thousands of points at the bottom, fireworks shoot right in your face and a rainbow blasts through the screen. It’s an orgasmic experience and clearly designed as such.
Other than that, I don’t remember much of the music of Peggle, though the game surely has some. I don’t think much can be written or said about its graphics either, though they are 2D and colorful in all the exploding ways. They are just instruments that serve to enhance and prolong the player’s contact with this silly gaming construct.
Honestly, I’m not sure if I am capable of recommending Peggle. It is what it is. A game about balls and peggles that is as enjoyable as one would expect from a game about balls and peggles. In other words, shamelessly enjoyable. The adventure mode that starts the game is merely an intro to the mechanics and finishing it opens up challenges which increase difficulty and extend the gameplay considerably. There’s even a hotseat multiplayer which is something every game no matter the genre should have.
In the main menu of Peggle, there is a unicorn. He stands there smiling and welcoming you to the game but if you decide to leave, he will cry. So if you don’t want to make extinct imaginary animals cry, you should play Peggle. It’s for your own good.
[A digital copy of Peggle Deluxe was given away for free for a limited time a couple weeks ago, and that’s where I got it. I do believe that the game is available on almost anything that can play games – consoles, computers, handhelds, phones and pads – so it shouldn’t be hard to get a hold of. Though the normal price of the PC version seems to be $20 which is too much in my opinion. Also, it’s supposedly sold fifty million copies worldwide, so everyone and their mother (or mostly the mother) have already played this and maybe the price was right for them. Eh, it’s $1 on iPad so they might have bought it there as well.]