Receiver IK is from Yoshio Ishii, author of the Hoshi Saga series. You start the game with one single dot. The dot moves in a random direction at a slow, fixed speed. Coming out of the centers of the four sides of the screen are essentially pong paddles on chain-like apparati. As you move the mouse, the paddles follow your movements, as well as they can given the restriction of their chains. Your goal is to block the dot from moving off the screen. However, every eighth hit produces a new dot, which you must also keep in play. With only three or four dots, this is an easy task, but as you accumulate more dots, you've got more to juggle. Since a new dot comes with every eight blocks, you'll be gaining them at a faster rate the longer you play. Once one dot goes off the edge of the screen, it's game over.
Analysis: Probably the simplest way to describe this game is "sadistically pleasant." Honestly, it's a very slow-moving game, if you're good at it. And the delightful pings and twangs the dots make when they hit the paddles is soothing, almost like wind chimes—random, and increasing as the wind picks up. But when your score gets into the hundreds, you've got over a dozen balls flying around, and you're scrambling around like mad trying to keep everything in play, you notice the demonic side of the game. After you lose, you can't help but say to yourself (or out loud, to each his own), "Ouch… I could probably do better." And then you play again. And again. And that high score is just tempting you, waiting to be beaten. And even when you do beat it, you still want to beat it again. Receiver IK is easy to play and aesthetically simple, with vector-like graphics and soothing sound effects, but the evil challenge is what keeps you coming back for more.
Cheers to Ishii for another delightful game!