Three for Free: Breakout Clones

Features Spanner Spencer 18:18, 21 Jun 2012

We take a look at three free Breakout clones for the iPhone, to demolish your gaming boundaries.

Breakout is actually a very relevant game when it comes to the iPhone as, you're probably aware, the original arcade machine was built for Atari by none other than Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak.

Since that day, over 30 years ago, dozens, if. It hundreds of single player Pong variations have appeared. Naturally, over the last year or two, the majority of those Breakout clones (and the Atari original, of course) have been on the iPhone, so we thought it was time to take a look at three of the best free versions.

A great slice of gaming history, and as much fun as you can have with a bat, ball and a wall without having to go outside.

Twim Brick Breaker
(iTunes Link
Although this is pretty much an off-the-shelf Breakout clone, it's slick gameplay and classic, well-designed levels make it instantly appealing and does its heritage proud.

Each round begins with a nice twist to the established mechanics, however. A Bust-A-Move-esque catapult is pulled back and released to send the ball where you want it to go, after which the catapult reverts to a paddle so you can bound the ball around as normal.

An insane multi-ball feature often kicks in amongst the many other bonuses, creating a superbly chaotic barrage of balls that wipes out a whole level - if you can keep some of them in the air. This all adds up to a typical Breakout game that's considerably more entertaining than it ought to be.

By the way, if you're struggling to find it on your App Store, search for Brick Breaker 2012, too. Seems to be different depending on your region.

3D Brick Breaker Revolution FREE
(iTunes Link)  
Breakout doesn't need to be in 3D, but that doesn't mean a bit of extra depth to the action isn't welcome. This is one of two companion games, with the other being a standard 2D version of the same thing. They play equally well, and it's nice to have the choice between stylish, flashy retro-ized graphics, and stylish, flashy retro-ized graphics on an angle.

In true D-Choc style, the upgrades, bonuses and power-ups are what make the game. Chunky, blinding lasers burning up the screen, flaming multi-balls, nukes and mirrors turn this Breakout clone into something of a bullet hell shoot-‘em-up as much as a one player Pong game, and that's probably the biggest compliment we could offer it.

You don't get a whole lot in the free version, sadly, but it's a tasty sample of what's to come if you go for the paid upgrade.

Radial 50 Lite - 360° Brick Breaker
(iTunes Link
Evidently there's more than one way to add another dimension to the Breakout gameplay mechanics. You might not need to take the concept 3D, but playing it around a 360 degree circumference adds a powerful new twist to the action.

To look at, you'd never guess this was a Breakout clone, but as you begin sliding the curved paddle around the outer edge of the circle, bouncing the ball into the centre to know out the rings of bricks, it all becomes pleasingly familiar.

Bonuses and collectibles are squirreled away in the middle, where they're hardest to get at, though the excellent, dial-like control system ensure any balls you miss are entirely your own fault. A crisp and clean aesthetic style round out Radial 50 beautifully, making it the underdog Breakout champion you've been looking for.

What would Woz do? We think he'd love it.

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