Loud beeps and confusing menus... ah Atari...
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I'm Gaming Jay: Youtube gamer, let's player, retrogaming fan, and determined optimist... Join me in this series while I try out EVERY game in the book 1001 VIDEO GAMES YOU MUST PLAY BEFORE YOU DIE, before I die. The game review for each game will focus on the question of whether you MUST play this game before you die. But to be honest, the game reviews are just for fun, this series is more about the YouTube gamer journey. Let's try out those classic retro games we grew up with, have fond memories of, or heard of but never got a chance to try! And with that said, the game review for today is...
Developer(s) Atari, Inc.
Platform(s) Arcade, Atari 2600, etc.
In many ways, Breakout was a spiritual successor to Pong. Though Pong excelled at two player combat, Breakout opted to perfect the single player experience. Instead of hitting a ball at your opponent, you now hit your ball at a rainbow colored wall, slowly chipping away at it, and earning points as you went.
A variety of game modes were included in the Atari version, though like many Atari games, to select between the modes you had to flick one of a number of ambiguously labeled switches on the console. Doing so switches between non-descript game modes like "1", "2", and "3". However, these game modes do mix up the standard Breakout formula, making the colored wall invisible, letting your ball break through the wall rather than bounce back, and even adding in a 2-player mode where players take turns.
Though Breakout has aged, its timelessness can be seen by the fact that Breakout style games still exist to this day. Albeit, these games mainly exist on smart phones, tablets, and other such devices. Nonetheless there's something addicting about trying to wipe out that colored wall, one ball hit at a time... Oh, and did I mention that the original Breakout was developed by none other than Steve and Steve of Apple Computers fame?
➙ Must You Play It?
Despite its age, Breakout still holds up as a fun way to kill some time. These days though, Breakout is better classified as a casual game than as a serious, engrossing video game. It is a classic game though, and if you've never tried it, there are countless versions you can check out, even on your phone, and it may be worth doing so. However, it's not the most exciting game out there anymore.