Digital media artist and UC Davis student, John Cooney, has produced this highly addictive Flash action arcade game, and he has made it available for the world to play on his website, jmtb02.com.
Ball Revamped: Metaphysik is a game of dexterity and timing, requiring the player to guide a multi-colored ball to the goal to complete each level. Score is tallied in seconds, with the lowest score being best.
The starting point for each level is the top left corner of the play field, which is represented in 2D and viewed from the side. The vertical orientation of the game suggests a bit of gravity physics influencing the ball, and this fact can be seen as the ball accelerates down as it is released.
Using just the arrow keys for movement, you will need to press the up arrow just enough to suspend the ball's rate of fall and balance it in mid-air. Some levels are maddeningly difficult, requiring you to make complex horizontal movement whilst balancing the ball's vertical position. And if that weren't enough, there are a variety of devices, timers, switches, and other objects that exist to thwart your advancement through the levels.
In Metaphysik, there is no concept of a 'life'. If the ball hits a wall, or most any object except the goal itself, you simply restart the level again. You may try as many times as you wish, although your score will continue to increase as the seconds tick away. The game features 125 different levels and a final boss. And if you need to see how any of the levels is completed, John has a video on his site of someone completing the game in 346 seconds—which would be unbelievable if it weren't for the video.
As I mentioned before, the game is difficult, and yet it is built upon a simple and basic core gameplay mechanic. The ball physics make the ball behave as if it were super light, and the lightest touch on the keys will affect it slightly. As it is, I had to use both hands on the arrow keys to be able to get up to level 40. There is no way to save your progress, so if you get tired and want to come back to it later, you will have to start from the beginning all over again. A little effort with Flash's local shared object could have avoided this one significant flaw.
All things considered, the game features nice visuals paired with excellent level design that together forms an addictive little Flash game that's hard to put down.
Thanks to Capuchin for suggesting this game.