The defintive mobile version
Peggle was an internet phenomenon when it was released in 2007 for both the PC and Mac platforms. Created by PopCap Games, the game helped propel PopCap Games into the mainstream, earning both critical acclaim and blockbuster sales status. It reached such epic popularity among core gamers that it was available both on Steam as well as a World of Warcraft add-on players could download to get their Peggle fixes in during raid down-times.
The basic premise is simple: Peggle is akin to Plinko on the Price is Right where minuscule pinballs cascade down intricate patterns of pegs, lighting them as they go.
To win, the player must light orange pegs that are sprinkled through-out the game board. Once all the orange pegs are successfully lit (and subsequently removed) the player has won. Of course, difficulty is introduced when the board (and adjacent orange pegs) are surrounded by a multitude of blue pegs whose only value is to help boost the player's score and create additional points for the ball to chaotically project from.
Along the way players find new colored pegs (green and purple to name a few) which cause power ups such as multi-ball and the ability to predict where the ball will bounce off its initial trajectory. While you can easily aim for most of these "special" pegs, the joy of Peggle is when chains of pegs are lit unintentionally. Read: the true satisfaction of Peggle is the unintended results of ones actions - a ball that is seemingly endless in its proverbial pings of pegs.
While Peggle's controls are simple (aim a beam that represents where your ball will be shot) it belies the games true genius: trying to create the perfect ricochet cycle. The symphony of lighting pegs both intended and not induces predicted and unpredictable results which may or may not benefit the player. Despite this chaos, the player still attains a sense of skill as mistakes (and success) are repeatable in the same manner, much as physics is wont to repeat itself in a controlled environment. This simple fact enables strategy in a game otherwise dominated by luck.
The iPhone version of the game is a peerless rendition on mobile fronts. The controls feel perfect for a touch screen and precision can be had by both simple touch screen rubs or by using a wisely included slide which enables more pin-point precision. After the shot trajectory is established the humble "Fire" button sends the ball on its merry way.
Graphically the iPhone version is near picture-perfect to its computer counterparts, a port only in the sense that the underlying code is optimized for the iPhone platform. There are no compromises to be found here from the original, no content seemingly missing. Everything about the original Peggle is in true form and PopCap Games should be commended for its efforts.
It's rare that a game feels so well paired with a system when it is ported from a completely different input methodology. Here we have a humble touch screen replacing a much more sophisticated mouse and keyboard combo. Even so, Peggle does not just work on the iPhone: it swells and sings to such heights that anyone experiencing Peggle for the first time on the iPhone won't have the slightest inkling this wasn't a game built from the ground up for it.
PopCap Games I salute you.