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[minis Review] BreakQuest: Extra Evolution

“BreakQuest: Extra Evolution is an enhanced and improved version of original BreakQuest, one of the best break-out games of all times, created by Nurium games. In addition to the energizing gameplay of its predecessor, the game boasts a superior physics concept, new art style and cool sound. Breaking bricks has never been so fun!”

What is it?:
It is a brick breaker game that does not have too many actual bricks. I really enjoy playing most brick games, going all the way back to Arkanoid. The menu design is straightforward. Play Game and Options can be selected from the main menu. Play Game will present you with 10 different starting stages, each stage has 9 levels, plus 1 boss level. You must finish each level to progress through the stage. It’s a very simple, and straightforward layout for level selection.

Each level has a distinctive feel to it. Only a few levels have true bricks that you break. The levels are colorful and unique, with some interesting puzzles, some of which are frustrating to finish. I was really struck by the amount of detail that was put into this minis game. Some of the levels were hard to tell what I was actually trying to hit, and on the PS3, the colors would make me dizzy at times due to the contrasting colors that were used. I thought I was looking at one of those hidden posters a few times. I generally could only complete 1-2 stages in any one sitting, due to frustration on a level or general lack of interest, but I was always compelled to come back and play the game. The boss levels were by far my favorite, and were generally lots of fun, with the exception of 1 boss level.

The controls are akin to a standard brick game. You can control the “pad” with the analog or digital controls. The ‘x’ button allows usage of certain pad upgrades/bonus. The L1 and R1 pads are used to deploy a wall/floor that acts as a barrier for the ball. The actual responsiveness of the pad with a PS3 controller is fairly decent. I wasn’t super annoyed by the controls due to the usefulness of the ‘wall’ control.

Power ups
Like most brick breaker games, there are power ups, and power downers. Most are broken up into a few categories. Pad size, pad gun, ball speed, and ball types. A number of the power ups/decreases aren’t straightforward. There are a number of different guns/rockets you can get, which are quite fun to use. The sputnik power-up puts 3 multi color balls that circle around the main ball and then hits different bricks on the main balls path. I think this is one of the better parts of the game, and how the different power-ups affect levels in different ways.

This is a mini game, so no trophies, but there are built-in achievements. Some of the achievements are based upon a rolling score that can be achieved by playing the levels again and again. Once you beat each boss level, you will unlock a new pad that can be selected in the options menu. It took me about 10 hrs to complete all 10 stages, of 10 levels per stage.

I played the first BreakQuest, but I enjoyed this one a bit more, and the controls felt a little tighter than I remember from the first one, however that could just be me. Experiment with the power-ups, and if you get stuck on a level, just keep experimenting.

[review pros=”Lots of levels
Each level is unique
Challenging puzzles within each level” cons=”Hard to play for more than 1 hour at a time
A few frustrating level design choices” score=84]

This review is based on a psn copy of the game provided by Beatshapers. The mini game was played entirely on a PS3