Peggle, a cult hit on the PC and both home and handheld consoles, has made it’s way onto the next generation of consoles with Peggle 2. Is it worth spending the money for right off of the bat or at the very least deserving of a mike drop at E3? Hmmmm…
For those of the unenlightened, Peggle is a very simple arcade-style game in which you shoot a metal ball at blue and orange pegs. Once the ball hits a peg, the peg disappears; once the orange pegs are all gone, the level is complete and you move on to next board. Sounds simple, right? Well, you only have 10 balls to complete the level and the pegs are never in an easy place to hit. Not to mention that a lot of the times the pegs are moving. On the positive side, there are several ways to get more balls (tee hee!) to shoot at those pesky pegs; in particular, there are special moves that you can use that you unlock when you hit a green peg. These powers, which can include super balls (tee hee!), guided shots and a ball multiplier (yeah, that one’s too easy). It was fun, simple and easy to play…but challenging.
Popcap, who also created some other mega-hits like Plants vs Zombies and Bejeweled, decided that the next generation of consoles deserved the launching of the much anticipated Peggle 2. Peggle 2 ups the ante in almost every category while still keeping the charm that made the original such a cult hit. More puzzles, unlockable alternate costumes for your masters and new trial levels give players even more Peggle goodness. The new Masters, including Gnorman (a gnome whose power is to electrify two nearby pegs) and Jeff (a giant troll who is a carbon copy of The Big Lebowski…psst! He’s my fave!) give even more options on how to play each level. Some alternate outfits include a cyborg uniform for Bjorn the Unicorn and a sweater vest for Jeff.
Also new to the game are Trials; these are short, theme specific levels where there is only one goal (i.e. hit these four super-fast moving pegs with three balls). Completing these trials will unlock even more goodies including even more alternate outfits and (gasp!) end game credits! Another new feature are the three extra goals per level; you’ll need to beat each to get all of those ultra-important achievements. There is also a pretty robust multiplayer mode where you take turns against your buds to out duel each other.
Peggle has never been without its faults are this is no exception. Some of the side challenges are VERY difficult and would take a severe amount of luck in order to complete the 150+ amount. Speaking of luck, if you didn’t have any this game would absolutely suck. Sometimes, luck is all you have in order to complete a level (especially when you get closer and closer to the end). Bad luck also keeps some of the frustration mounting and it’s even worse when you’re trying to 100% complete a level and it winds up screwing you over and you have to try the level again. I also hope that more downloadable content comes along because the single player game is incredibly short.
All that aside, I will say that the game is still incredibly fun. The tenseness of getting close to hitting the last peg (the camera zooms in and there is a drum roll) is still exceptionally thrilling. Also, “Ode to Joy” plays whenever you complete the level and, frankly, it never gets old. Adding this with the fact that this title is only $12…there’s really no reason to not get this game. Don’t expect to get an in depth, story driven affair but you can expect to get as much fun as you can (legally) have for the money. Go grab this title and have a good time, sir!