Best of 2008 (shared):
In his ongoing, mad quest to give us all nightmares about geometry, Tonypa has unleashed Cobacoli upon the world. It sounds like a deadly bacteria, but no, it's an elegant puzzle game based around 2-dimensional ball physics, although in many ways it qualifies as an infectious disease. Symptoms include intense concentration, swearing, and the inability to pry your hand away from your mouse.
As the title implies the field before you is not empty, but hides balls. Your colored box along the edge of the playing field can fire a beam in the direction of your mouse, ricocheting off of any hidden balls and exposing them. Clicking the mouse will clear these balls from the screen, and the onslaught of balls will inch its way down the field.
Why we picked them: While none of us here at JIG could decide on a single game to represent this category, we did however reach one consensus: Tonypa, with 8 new games and 2 major updates during 2008, represents the Simple Idea category better than any other developer. We couldn't agree on one specific game to choose as the winner, but there were (at least) two that stood out: Cobacoli (Colored Balls, Colored Lines) is a classic example of what a simple game is at its core. With a clearly defined goal and method of play, comfortable difficulty curve and great music to boot, Tonypa managed to create a game that is the perfect combination of frustration and entertainment. These Balls Are Made For Hiding wins for its straightforward, unique and original concept executed in classic Tonypa style. A simple game with a simple goal that is not-so-simple to achieve, TBAMFH is pure and challenging casual gameplay fun for all, and one of the Best of 2008.
Onekey is a character-based platform game played with only "one key", and thus the mystery of the title is solved. The catch is that you can't affect the main character directly. Instead, you control various objects in the environment while he blunders around falling off of things. This is a good one.