App review: Peggle on HTC EVO 4G

This guest article was written by Bruce Eaton.

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In what has become almost a rite of passage these days in handheld electronics, PopCap Games' very own wonderchild, Peggle, has finally landed on the HTC EVO 4G via an exclusive launch in the Amazon Appstore as today's Free App of the Day.

For all two of you who are not familiar with Peggle, it has been described in many ways as an American take on the Japanese pachinko games that are so very popular abroad. Seeing how this game has been on everything from the Apple iPhone to the Nintendo DS, it  holds up well on Android but might not bring the innovative first time rush to those who might already be Peggle Masters.

Coming in at a hefty 74.1MB download, Peggle is no small game to be trifled with.

First released in 2007 on Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X, Peggle has enjoyed many players across a multitude of platforms due to its simplistic yet incredibly challenging gameplay. The game is split into 55 levels where players must shoot a ball at 1 of 100 blue "pegs," of which 25 have been turned orange and need to be removed in order to advance to the next level.

Players use a launcher at the top of the screen to propel a ball on a crash course of almost unpredictable mayhem by taking aim at one peg and hoping for the best. Players begin each level with ten balls and can earn extras by landing the ball in the moving ball catcher at the bottom of the screen or by earning a high score shot.

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The 55 levels are broken down into five level segments with ten Peggle Masters hosting a set and a final set of Master levels where you can select which Master will be your assistant. You can gain help from these Masters by colliding with one of a few randomly placed green pegs that will then activate an ability unique to each Master.

Peggle3 Nothing short of colorful, as players try to maximize their ball ricochets, the screen lights up in colorful ballet of colored pegs and bonus meter indicators that end in the Fever Mode where "Ode to Joy" blasts out in a slow-mo ball bouncing orchestra of bonus points and a hopeful chance to score the big 100,000 bonus.

Now as I have stated before, this game has been around since 2007 and holds up very well but in this version on Android, PopCap Games has almost phoned it in, what with the same 55 levels and 75 Grand Master challenges that can be found in other versions. If you have played Peggle once, you have most likely already played this version too. If you haven't, then you definitely are in for a spectacular treat not found in many games; the uniqueness of Peggle has yet to really been duplicated.

Settings are few but helpful. With standard sound effects and music sliders, there is an included help guide for those who are new. The biggest settings features are to allow left-handed gamers swap the controls to help them control items with their dominate hand, as well as a colorblind option that I find to be great because it can even help people who are hard of seeing easily identify their targets.

"Colorful unicorns, balls, and colors" is a great way to describe the very unique game that is Peggle. It is a great on-the-go game with auto saving that lends to a full game experience. With a multitude of levels and characters to master, you will not be left wanting.

But as someone who has played Peggle before, I feel the magic has worn off a little since 2007. Then again, as I write this, I am trying to get a perfect score on level 45, showing you that despite its rehash nature, Peggle still lures its players back over and over again.

[Amazon Appstore]

This guest article was written by Bruce Eaton.

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Jenn K. Lee

Jenn K. Lee is the founder of Pocketables. She loves gadgets the way most women love shoes and purses. The pieces in her tech wardrobe that go with everything are currently the Samsung Galaxy Note II, Sony Tablet P, and Nexus 7, but there are still a couple of vintage UMPCs/MIDs in the back of her closet.

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