Iggy's Reckin' Balls
Every so often a game comes along that makes me sit up and take notice. There are a number of different things about the game that makes me take notice; sometimes it is the great graphics, other times it is the tight gameplay, and the third thing that makes me pay extra special attention to a game is unique gameplay. If the game has something new or different to offer then I am sure to give it some extra special consideration. This is the case with Iggy's Reckin' Balls. There is just something about this game that gives it enough originality to warrant a look or two.
Iggy's Reckin' Balls is a racing game of sorts that takes racing in a totally different direction; up. This game packs plenty of originality and brings over 100 tracks, seven different racers (not including the secret racers), four player split screen action and plenty of replay value. If the idea of trying something a little different appeals to you then read on, because you may find what Acclaim has done rather interesting.
I really did not know what to expect when I received this game. I had seen all of the advertisements and read the press material but I still was not sure what I was getting myself into. So, like any good gamer, I went straight into the racing. Of course I did not bother opening the manual because who needs a manual, right? I started off on the easy tracks just to ease myself gently into the game. After doing just fine on the first race, it became quickly obvious that I was going to need some tutoring because things were starting to get ugly for me real quick. I conceded and hit the training mode option on the game and started my tutorial.
Most games with training modes usually over-complicate things but this was not the case with Iggy's. Wait, before I go any further, the reason that I am even telling you about the training mode is because they did such a great job on it that it warrants mentioning. Okay, so I started going through the training mode and was quickly introduced to the basics of the game. Now the cool thing about this was that I was not just given the instruction but I actually had to perform the maneuvers before continuing on. I don't know about you but I am the type of person that requires some hands on time before I really understand things. That made this training mode ideal for me because the more complicated the moves and actions became I still had to actually perform them before moving on to the next area. So the training mode will walk you through a complete hands-on of all of the different moves, objects and conditions that you will encounter during the actual races. I highly recommend going through this training mode before playing the game just so you can say you have tried everything in the game at least one time.
Usually when a game has a training mode you know that it is going to be complex and require a ton of brain power. I hate using brainpower when I am playing games so I was pleasantly surprised to find that the game was actually quite simple to learn and play. This is the reason I recommend doing the training because after going through it once, you will be prepared to start playing the game without worrying about not knowing what you are doing. This does not mean that you will be able to win yet, but you will be able to play the game with a level of competency.
I have not really described the gameplay much so you are still probably not sure what type of game you are getting yourself into. I did mention that it is a racing game but this might not be the best description for it. When I think of a racing game, I think cars on a track competing to the finish line. The only thing that Iggy's has in common with this type of racer is that there is a finish line of sorts and that is where all of the similarities stop. You pick one of the members of Iggy's Reckin Crew and you race against three others until you reach the finish platform. Instead of racing in the traditional sense, your race goes left, right, up, and even down. The tracks are multi leveled platforms that resemble, well, they don't really resemble anything that I can think of. The basic idea of the game is to climb, jump, and swing your way to the end of the course before the rest of the other racers. That pretty much sums it up.
If I would just leave it there you would probably think that the game sounds pretty boring. To be honest, after the first few races I started to think the same thing. I was thinking that the game was different but not very exciting. The more I played and the farther into the tracks I got, the more I really started to get sucked in by the competition of the races. The courses started to get trickier and more complex as the game progressed, which got my competitive juices flowing even more. The courses were all well thought out and complex enough to keep you thinking but not too complex so the focus always remains on the racing aspect and not the courses.
One of the other things that really made the game fun was the fact that you could actually perform attacks on the other racers. These attacks would do anything from smashing them into the ground, temporarily stunning them, to launching them down off the platform to a lower level. This was great because on some of the more complex courses, you would have to wait for the upper level to rotate down so you could jump up to it. Occasionally your opponent would also be waiting so you could run up, smash him into the ground and make him miss the opportunity to jump up. This would cost him valuable time and allow you to take over his position. I know it sounds complicated but it is really simple. Trust me.
I did not have any major complaints about the game either. There were a few minor things like the different Reckin' Balls had very annoying voices and that they tried to give the Balls personalities and it just did not work. Other than that, this game is pretty solid in all respects. I really never found any instances that the game made me feel cheater either. It did seem like I would either finish in first place or last place most of them time but there was an occasional second or third but it was rare.
I was not overly impressed nor put off by the graphics in this game. I can't think of any instances that the graphics hindered the game in any way but I also can't really think of an instance that they were spectacular either. I guess what I am getting at is that they get the job done but are not going to win any awards. I really don't think that they are taking advantage of the N64 and think that they could have released this game on the PSX and it would do just fine.
This game is pretty difficult to describe yet very easy to play once you get the hang of it. If you are looking for a different type of game to add to your library and enjoy addictive multi-player games, I suggest you check this game out. While not overwhelming graphically, the gameplay does more than enough to carry it. Just make sure you go through the training mode and you will be scaling the courses in no time. I am glad to see that there is still a little bit of creativity left out there in the video game world.
Iggy's Reckin' Balls DownloadsIggy's Reckin' Balls download
Even though we don't read each other's reviews before going to print, I've got a pretty good idea that my Reckin' Balls score'll be lower than anyone else's. I've already heard everyone's arguments as to why they dig this game, but nobody's been able to sway me on it--it's just not my thing. Don't get me wrong, Reckin' Balls is hardly a bad game. Puzzle fans will definitely enjoy it for its depth alone (there are more than 100 stages, not including hidden stuff that I haven't found yet). It's got a pretty good Multiplayer Mode too (for racing), but the Battle Mode is boring and uninspired and nowhere near as fun as most N64 games' Battle Modes. My problem is that the game just doesn't do anything for me. The characters are lame (they're like Madballs rejects with horrendous voices), the weapons are substandard and I just can't find the fun in mindlessly grappling your way through level after level of endless track. It's like Uniracers, but without all the coot stuff (the tricks, the speed, etc.). For four-player racing, I can slightly recommend it; for a family-type game that the kids might be amused with, I can probably recommend it a little bit more--but as far as "must-have" N64 games go, this just ain't one of 'em. Not for me, anyway. Definitely get out and rent it if you can before committing to a purchase.
I don't get why Ricciardi doesn't like Iggy's that much. It's one of those games that looks overly simplistic and boring, but once you sit down to play it, it really grows on you. The best part of the game is the excellent level design. Each track has a unique layout, keeping the pace frantic and the challenge level high. Multiplayer, as expected, is a lot of fun. This is no Mario Kart by any means, but you should still check it out.
This is a really weird action/racing/puzzle game that turned out much better than I thought it would. Once you learn all of the different techniques, the One-player Mode is a lot of fun--if you can ignore the repetitive music and lame voices. As far as the Multiplayer Modes go, Iggy is good for two players. Anything higher makes the viewing screens too small. I advise renting this--it's a game you'll either love or hate.
I hate its characters--and I despise the sound effects--but otherwise Iggy's Reckin' Balls is pretty fun. Its gameplay is best described as a 3D take on Uniracers (minus the tricks), and as in that game you need to learn the tracks before you start having real fun. IRB's fast pace makes for some confusing moments--particularly when you tangle with several other balls. Multiplayer racing's a blast, but Battle Mode's a bust.
Strange racing game where grapple-equipped balls chase up rollercoaster-like courses. Fun when (and if) you get into it.
This puzzle offering from Iguana looks nice but plays blandly. Push left or right and watch the CPU opponents win every time. Dull.
Reckin' Balls - the latest game from Turok developers Iguana - is quite a departure from the gory mayhem for which they have become famous. Acclaim's best description of the game was that it was"hard to describe", which to be honest is a pretty good account!
Up to four players can take part in this jolly game of everyday ball folk. It's а sort of racing game, but with puzzle elements like conveyor belts and springs, as well as a wide variety of bizarre weapons, also playing a major part. The idea is simply to get your ball from one end of a track to the other as fast as possible, preferably before your opponents do the same. Each ball is equipped with a grappling hook that fires from their head, which can be used either to pull themselves up to new parts of the track or to bash away at the other racers.
The tracks are twisting, looping spirals that rise high into the air, bringing to mind the old Super NES game Unirally, only, um, not. With over a hundred courses for the balls to strut their bouncy stuff upon, in a variety of environments from high-tech cities to worlds of sweets, as well as eight different balls to choose from, there should be plenty in Reckin' Balls to keep players busy!
Press R+Z on the menu then type the following in on the new cheat menu (which has just been activated):
- JUMPAROUND: Level Select
- ICEPRINCESS: Icy Tracks.