Delta Omicron

The 9th Stardawn
144.3 PT (Pulsar Time)

The past haunts me.
Five years since we met
our dreadful nemesis Doh.
The search for a new world
goes on. Our goal remains
elusive. When will it end?

Yet, I know he's out there
watching... waiting...

End log entry.

Arkanoid: Doh It Again is a sequel of sorts to the eponymous Arkanoid and Arkanoid 2. It was released more than a decade after the original, by Taito in 1997 for the Super NES. It followed the same basic rules of Arkanoid and every other Breakout clone out there, as in you controlled a paddle at the bottom of the screen and bounce a ball around an arena to destroy blocks over 99 levels. Word.

UPDATE the ELDER: Alert reader mkb informs me you can now play a version of this game on shockwave. It is masquerading as Blasterball 2.

UPDATE the YOUNGER: Another fine reader malcster tells me the game was also released on the Satellaview in Japan as BS Arkanoid: Doh It Again.

STORY - After the text from the Game Attract Sequence above, once the game starts another bit of filler story scrolls up. Let's go!

The 11th Stardawn
75.05 PT (Pulsar Time)

Our sensors have
detected a stunning new
terra class planet.

I dispatched our scout ship
"VAUS" to conduct initial
colonization surveys.

Our joy was short lived.
Note that the story doesn't explain why you must destroy blocks, or whatever, or why "Vaus" wasn't just fitted with missiles or autocannon instead of a bouncing ball, but anyway. Oh, and note also that in this writeup the term "Vaus" has been replaced with "paddle", or "bat", since that makes much more fucking sense.

If you've played Breakout, then you know the score for this game. You control a paddle at the bottom of the screen, and a ball bounces around a large arena breaking blocks and suchlike. Much like Tetris, it's a simple premise, but soon proves to be extremely addictive. The inclusion of powerups and enemies make for a slightly more varied ball-and-bat game. Superfun.

"ENEMIES" - not really enemies per se, but little things that float around the arena from time to time. Generally not a major threat, since they're destroyed on contact with your ball or paddle. Destroying an enemy nets you points.

  • Blue cone - float in spiralling patterns. When hit by your ball, explode and send the ball in a random direction.
  • Red cube - floats in a more geometric pattern than the cone, but will sometimes turn into another block that must be destroyed.
  • Green saucer - when hit by the ball, it explodes and takes out any blocks in its immediate area. Useful.
  • Cyan infinity symbol - just another target, but at odd intervals electrifies itself. During this period it is invincible, and contact with it makes the screen wobble. WoW.
  • Tri-coloured balls - once hit, they split into three separate balls that can bounce around and smash blocks, but are destroyed when they come into contact with the real ball or your paddle.
  • Clear UFO - Can't be destroyed without lasers or acidball. If touched by a normal ball, it will teleport it to a random location on the arena. Can be very helpful, can be more useless than a condom machine in the Vatican.

BOSSES - every 11 levels, you encounter a boss creature. Woo.

  • Level 11 boss: A snake-type thing composed of linked spheres. Not much threat, but will occasionally divebomb your ship. Just bounce the ball off it repeatedly.
  • Level 22 boss: Doh, a giant Inca head. Spewed out mini-Inca heads that shoot laser beams at your ship. Just aim for the main head, but be sure to destroy at least one small head each time or you'll live in a world of hurt.
  • Level 33 boss: Inca head with added body. And arms. Aim for the arms first, then take out the body. While the arms are intact, they can flip the arena - be careful, since your controls will be reversed.
After this, they start repeating - Level 44 is the snake again, Level 55 is the Inca head and so on.

Sometimes, destroying a block releases a pill-shaped object with a letter on it, which rotates its way to the bottom of the screen. Positioning your ship in such a way that the pill collides with your ship does not, against all common sense, destroy your ship, but instead grants a special feature. Below is a listing of the pills and their effects, in alphabetical order. But remember: Winners Don't Use Drugs William S. Sessions, FBI.

  • ( B ) - A girlish pink, once collected a secret wall opens on the arena, and you're free to go to the next level. Nice.
  • ( D ) - A nice cyan colour, this pill causes your ball to split into eight different balls. Fun when in confined spaces.
  • ( E ) - Dark blue, when collected this pill lengthens your paddle by an extra half-length. If two are collected consecutively, the paddle is doubled in length.
  • ( G ) - Lime green, collecting this makes your paddle sticky - instead of bouncing off, the ball will stick to it allowing you to position the paddle for a better shot.
  • ( L ) - Blood red in colour, this is my favourite pill - Lasers. once collected, your paddle will be able to fire block-destroying laserbeams. When you absolutely, posititvely got to destroy every last block in the room, accept no substitutes.
  • ( M ) - Despite being another effeminate pink, this is the key to the deadly acidball - instead of bouncing off blocks and enemies, your ball will plough through them like they were so much damp tissue paper.
  • ( P ) - Military grey, one free life is yours if you can catch this pill. Pretty rare, too.
  • ( S ) - Tangerine bright, this slows down the ball. Useful near endgame when it's bouncing about like a cat on crack.
  • ( T ) - Dark green, once collected a one-time-only barrier is erected along the bottom of the playing field. If you miscalculate and miss the ball, the barrier will bounce the ball back, but will be destroyed in the process.

The 14th Stardawn
136.8 PT (Pulsar Time)

The mission has
ended in tragedy. Our
dream world was a hoax,
created by the vengeful
mind of Doh.

Yet, we must not give up.
Our quest will continue.
Some day we will find the
peace which we seek.

End log entry.

The 13th Stardawn
113.49 PT (Pulsar Time)

The journey is
at an end! We have found
our long sought home.

We will never repeat
the mistakes of the past.
Humanity and environment
will co-exist together.

Doh is gone forever,
banished into oblivion!

I now end my final entry.

PLAY TIME: 02H 13M 51S

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