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On the Ball

MobyRank MobyScore
Arcade
...
2.5
Sharp X68000
...
...
SNES
...
3.4
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Description

There's a kind of knick-knack you may find in dusty games rooms, a maze through which you navigate a marble by subtly tilting the board, dancing with gravity and momentum, deftly rolling your sphere out of dead ends and around the obstacles posed by holes in the board. Marble Madness explores this theme in a fudged 3-D perspective, Cloud Kingdoms in a flat 2-D one -- both by directly influencing the actions of the ball. The game takes a different approach toward a similar end; instead of moving the ball around the board, you move the board around the ball.

That's right; from the get-go, gravity pulls ever down, down, down on your ball toward the bottom of your screen regardless of board orientation; the task of the player is to rotate the board now clockwise, now counter-clockwise, to further a timely and unobstructed path beneath the ball in its progress toward each level's goal before the timer ticks down to zero. The game might as well have been named "inertia." Many obstacles can be avoided, but some must be engaged head-on: a certain momentum, if not terminal velocity, must be achieved to break through crumbling brick barriers; other obstacles toggle on and off like traffic lights, demanding not only speed but timing. Some influence the ball's direction, and in addition to merely delaying the ball's progress, touching some impediments incurs an additional time penalty -- conversely, some blocks bestow time bonuses, if you can afford the ever-diminishing time needed to take the scenic detour and collect them.

Screenshots

On the Ball Arcade Ouch! Lost 2 seconds.
On the Ball Sharp X68000 Tutorial
On the Ball SNES If after all those gambles you still lose, it even gives you a few continues to play with.
On the Ball Sharp X68000 Configuration mode

Alternate Titles

  • "Cameltry" -- Japanese title
  • "キャメルトライ" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Fun for a short time, but way too simple and easy SNES Martin Smith (63162)

The Press Says

Nintendo Magazine System UK SNES Feb, 1993 82 out of 100 82
All Game Guide SNES 1998 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
GamePro (US) SNES Dec, 1992 4 out of 5 80
Power Play SNES Aug, 1992 52 out of 100 52

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Trivia

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Contributed to by Riemann80 (18291), f1reball (203), Pseudo_Intellectual (44272) and Terok Nor (18320)