Guide a ball to the finish line, by carefully balancing it along precarious paths.
Players: 1 player
Age: Any age
Game Time: 1-3 hours
Developer or Designer: Klaus Riech
Repeated failure could lead you to throwing your tablet across the room
In 1984, Atari released an arcade game called Marble Madness
, in which you must guide marble around an isometric landscape. Two decades later in 2004, they updated this game for the PC, and called it Ballance
- a fusion of 'ball' and 'balance'. The puzzle game employed physics, in which you had to keep the ball balanced on various platforms as your roll it along to the finish line.
Now Bouland have published a sequel,Ballance Resurrection
, which is free to play on Android tablets.
The game has beautiful graphics; the floating landscape features Ancient Greek architecture, suggesting that maybe this is Olympus.
There are twelve levels, each more challenging than the last, with new obstacles to encounter. Obstacles include, crates, pillars, and other giant balls.
Precision and patience are the key to success, as the pathways are narrow, and easy to fall from. If you do fall, you either go back to the beginning or your last checkpoint, which is marked by two flames.
You have five lives before the game is over, which get replenished each level. When you reach the end of a level, you will be given a star rating, and this is dependent on how many lives you have left, and how many orbs you collected.
Orbs are shining balls of light. Most are easy to attain, but some are hidden behind crates, or hovering in the air, making them trickier to get.
When playing Ballance Resurrection
you have the choice of touch screen controls or tilting. With the touch screen, you press the arrow keys to move left, right, forward, and back. The advantage of this is that it is slower, which is safer when close to the edge of a platform. The disadvantage is that you haven't got a full range of movement (NE, SE, SW, NW). That's why I prefer tilting. This also feels more organic.
The camera can either be fixed or free. If it is fixed, you have to manually change the angle, which can be difficult while trying to control the ball at the same time; I therefore think free is better.
is a great game if you like puzzles, but you really do need to be patient, because you can easily get frustrated by falling off the edge so many times.