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Ball laB – Review

I know games that reach onto console aren’t often considered shovelware very often but Ball laB genuinely makes me wonder why it exists. I love a budget game or an unusual game that tries something different but there is no reason for Ball laB to exist. Everything it does has been done better elsewhere and the game is over in a few minutes too.

You control a ball but it handles like a block which you can make move, jump and dash. Across 60 stages you need to reach the portal to continue on. The interesting thing is that the stage mutates and shifts on the single screen which gives the game a twist. The problem is that everything is small, coloured in a greyscale and does not have pixel perfect hit detection.

The greyscale graphics are fine but the small pixel art hampers the games engagement.

Instead, you’ll wrestle the odd difficulty wave where you’ll have no issues running back and forth for 4 or 5 levels and then you’ll hit one single jump that just wants to kill you every time. Part of the problem is the boost jump is very inconsistent. The other problem is visually the game is clearing using a square hit detection for a round ball. It just feels sloppy and when the game is already grey, the gameplay makes it more uninteresting.

Adding insult to injury, the 60 stages are very short and I thought I was still playing the first level when I realised I had cleared all 10 stages needed for the platinum in under three minutes. It is a real shame that nothing in Ball laB makes it stand out or feel satisfying to play but at least the cheap and easy platinum means it’ll be in and out of your mind so fast you’ll barely notice it. Not a recommendation from me I’m afraid.

Review copy provided by publisher.

Ball laB
Final Thoughts
Janky, small, grey and uninspired in almost every way. Without a unique selling point, I'm not sure why it exists.
Morphing levels is a nice idea.
No loading times.
Inconsistent controls.
Tired, safe and boring gameplay.
Unsatisfying difficulty waves.
Hit detection not of the standard needed for a precision platformer.
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