Ballz: The Directors Cut

a game by PF Magic
Genre: Fighting Games
Platform: 3DO
Editor Rating: 6/10, based on 4 reviews
User Rating: 6.0/10 - 1 vote
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Ballz: The Directors Cut
Ballz: The Directors Cut
Ballz: The Directors Cut
Ballz: The Directors Cut

Wow! That's all I can say! What? Oh, all right, I'll be more specific.

Ballz: The Director's Cut makes most fighting games look pathetic and dumb. As the title suggests, all of the combatants here are made up of nothing more than those most basic of geometric shapes, balls. (Well, spheres, actually, but that doesn't sound nearly as cool.) What a uniquely subversive concept! Game companies have traditionally tried to hide and gloss over the rough shapes that make up videogame characters, but the programmers of Ballz decided to make those shapes work for them.

And work is exactly what they do. As far as computer-screen displays go, nothing conveys the feeling of three dimensions as well as a cluster of spinning, interconnected balls. The characters here twirl, leap, contort and lunge at a brain-snapping rate, and the illusion is enhanced even further because the player's viewpoint is always shifting; it's almost as if we're viewing the action from a zooming steadicam mounted on the outside of the battle ring.

The gameplay is outstanding. Complex, funny moves are simple to learn and execute, and the big, brightly-colored shapes insure it's always fairly easy to make out what's going on. The much-maligned 3DO controller in this case provides a perfect interface; it's almost as if moves appear onscreen as quickly as you can picture them in your head.

The characters are ridiculous and unforgettable; monkeys, mutants, ghouls, clowns, rhino-men...nine in all, plus eight equally goofy bosses. All characters have their own voices, catchphrases and arenas, and each commands a series of moves ranging from the standard (punching, kicking) to the truly bizarre (throwing body parts, self-destructing). And because they're all just collections of nice, bouncy balls, there's no messy blood to mop up!

But whatever Ballz lacks in blood-and-guts violence, it more than makes up for in obnoxious noises and gross-out imagery. Television screens set up behind the combat ring continually flash insults, horribly violent images, and more than a few gestures your mom wouldn't let you do at the dinner table. Sure, it's immature and unnecessary, but just try not to laugh.

The background music, a bombastic series of techno music tracks laid down by the mid-'80s new-wave group Information Society, rounds out the take-no-prisoners attitude of this spectacular, hyperactive game. Ballz is a joy to play, and has more spunk and personality than any fighting game I've yet seen. With gameplay like this, who needs caffeine?

Download Ballz: The Directors Cut

3DO

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews

Those spherically incorrect fighters are back, and this time they have a ton of graphics-processing power behind them. Ballz for the B DO is a great improvement over the original.

Nothing to Sphere But Sphere Itself

The 3DO tries hard to be mainstream in the fighting genre with such offerings as Super Street Fighter II Turbo and Way of the Warrior. But fighting 3DOers will find a good battle in the Ballz arena.

Although basically the same game as the 16-bit titles of a year ago, this version includes improved graphics and speed enhancements. Other bugs have also been worked out. With fully rendered and revised backgrounds, this version rules.

The format's still best-two-of-three rounds, and there are still maniacal bosses like Jester and the Kangaroo to contend with. Also retained are the stinging taunts and verbose insults. New fighters, like the pugilistic poltergeist Zombie, make for nine total ball-busters.

Round Figures

The characters look better and move more fluidly. The speedy gameplay also makes for faster, less defensive rounds. Add in a true 360-degree rotation of the battle arena, and you have the makings of a classic.

The sounds are better than before with great CD-enhanced music and character-specific theme songs. There are even more hilarious grunts, groans, and farts than before.

The controls are easy to learn and understand, but Ballz is definitely a game that becomes more fun when you've memorized the moves. Although filled with humor, you could easily win rounds by just pounding the crap out of your opponents. The fighters also have a tendency to fling them selves around the arena without stopping for air.

Have Some Balli

Ballz' appeal is mainly its nonconformist attitude. There are no flaming Dragon Punches or bloody ball-splitting fatalities. Just plenty of laughs and lots of fun. It's not for every fighter, but those looking for a change of pace i should definitely get someBallz.

ProTips:

  • The finishing move for every fighter can be performed when your opponent's health bar is at 25 percent or lower. When in dose, tap Up twice to execute the move.
  • After your opponent's ballz have been shattered, press Button A four times.
  • Holding Down-Away and repeatedly pressing Button C yields a defensive throw. If you are playing a character who's relentless, this tactic works well.
  • Stun moves are the most effective. Divine's Knee To Nuts leaves opponents achin' and shakin'. Tap Down, Down, Up to execute It.
  • Getting tired of your fighter? Try morphing. Every character has a morph. For Yoko, tap Up, Right Shift, A, and C.
  • Taunting (simultaneously press Buttons A, B, and C) is more than just funny. It also pumps up your power. Several taunts and one hit could destroy

For wicked head-to-head fighting action with a deadly sense of humor, you can't miss with Ballz. The enhancements in the Director's Cut version make this sequel worth more than just a look.

To begin, they juiced the game's speed - this game is three times faster than its predecessor. The nine fighters and eight killer bosses arc joined by a new fighter, Zombie. All the characters are shown in rendered 3D graphics. To add variety, each fighter sports new special moves and can morph into another character. The Director's Cut also lets you replay your victory from any angle - even overhead. Finally, delightfully wicked grunts, groans, and other sounds emanate from these ballsy fighters.

Move anywhere on the playing field ... it continues forever! The camera automatically pans in or out depending on how far you get from your opponent. It's pretty cool!

Ballz for the 3DO definitely blows the other versions away with better graphics, sound and control. See for yourself!

FIRST IMPRESSION

Ballz? For the 3DO?

BEST FEATURE

It has improved graphics and sound over the other versions.

WHAT'S MISSING

Well, the control is not as good as it could be, but I guess that's because of the controller. I never did like the 3DO controller when it came to fighters ... it's simply too limited. Otherwise, everything seems to be in order.

YES, BUT DOES IT HAVE BALLZ?

Sure does. Not only does this version take everything from the previous versions for the other platforms, but it also uses the 3DO's superior processing speed and power to crank out some additional effects, such as vastly improved backgrounds and as mentioned before, better sound. This is definitely the best version of Ballz yet... that is, until the PlayStation version comes out!

Snapshots and Media

3DO Screenshots

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