App Reviewed on: iPhone 4
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Atari's Breakout Boost+ is not a complete overhaul of its super popular Breakout Boost app, which racked up more than two million downloads in the first two months. Rather, it makes some minor additions while changing the price from free to $.99 and gets rid of the micro-payments that unlocked various level packs. It's a welcomed addition as now there's access to 100 new levels under a dollar.
Playing off the major improvements of Breakout Boost over the original from back in the day, Breakout Boost+ has the same updated HD graphics that put quite a bit more color into the visual gameplay. However, it still provides the same basic gameplay in that there is a ball and a paddle and the overall goal is still to break as many bricks as possible.
I've seen a few complaints about lack of intense, over-the-top graphics and gameplay, but as a self-proclaimed Breakout purist, I find that the simplicity of the game is why it's so addictive. Sure, some of the enhanced balls such as the grenade ball could make a bigger explosion and have some sort of crazily intense sound effect, but again, simple has kept me enjoying this game for years. Other ball upgrades include fire, acid and of course splitting. Splitting is an absolute blast when a few are hit around the same time and there are six balls flying all over the screen for the ultimate destruction.
The new version of the game still features the newer style of boost control where the user can manually increase the speed of the ball for increasing the score multiplier. I found this to be a nice addition to the Breakout franchise. It adds enough velocity to the ball to make it as difficult as the gamer wants it.
The question isn't really about if the new version is a must have as there were already two million downloads to prove the popularity of the new gaming style. The heart of the matter is a comparison between Breakout Boost+ and the recently released Breakout Boost. To be honest, I'm a big fan of pay up front, especially when it's a game that I know I'm going to love. However, if the gamer is new to the game and wants a taste, then the previous version should be tried out as the first five levels are free to play.