|System: DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Taito||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Square Enix||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: June 17, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-4||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
In all single-player game types, blocks will randomly drop power-ups. These falling goodies will augment your VAUS by increasing or reducing its width (a VAUS with reduced width increases point totals), giving you a laser cannon, multiplying the Energy Balls, increasing or decreasing their speed, allowing you to catch the ball and re-deploy at your leisure, giving you an automatic warp to the next level, etc. Using power-ups in Arkanoid DS is not only important but also quite fun.
In multiplayer modes (and Vs. COM), players will also be able to catch power-ups to help their cause. But this time, power-ups are used not only to buff themselves but also to hinder their opponents' progression. Multiplayer game types include two and four-player Bust All and Bust Color (clear all bricks or all bricks of a specific color respectively). Multiplayer can be accessed via Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection or locally through DS Wireless Communication capabilities. Doing so allows you to play with fellow countrymen over the internet or with friends either at home or online. One thing that is certainly praiseworthy is the ability to play multiplayer with up to four players with just one DS cartridge via Download Play. This makes Arkanoid DS quite family-friendly, as kids and parents stuck in a speeding car during the Summer road trip can have some serious competitions without having to break the bank on multiple carts.
The presentation of the title is very nice. The visuals are solid for the DS. Plus, all the customizable graphics and unlockable sprites are a nice feature. This also extends to the greatly varied musical selections. Furthermore, the beginning of each level is marked by the classic Arkanoid theme that helps to root the game in the tradition of its predecessors.
All in all, Arkanoid DS is an excellent handheld title that will resonate with casual gamers, arcade aficionados, and nostalgic gamers. Some may find the gameplay mechanic to be repetitive and even dull, but the majority of gamers should be pleased with the quick, intuitive play and multiplayer options. Arkanoid DS is a game I can highly recommend for anyone looking to beef up their gaming-to-go library!
CCC Editor / News Director