Marble Madness Hands-On

Midway Games has definitely seen better days–majority owner Sumner Redstone liquidated the publisher for a mere $100,000 a few months ago–but all is not lost. Midway still has a catalog of arcade classics a mile long, and a great new place to sell them called the App Store. Developer Handheld Games has been hard at work bringing Marble Madness to the iPhone, and we got a good look at it earlier today at E3.

There are already ball-rolling games galore for the iPhone, but Marble Madness created the genre all the way back in 1984. The old trackball’s been switched out for tilt controls here in 2009. You can choose the throwback graphics if you want, or opt for the updated look and feel, which is somewhat reminiscent of Tron.

There were six levels in the original Marble Madness game, and they’re all present and accounted for in this version. There will be additional bonus levels on top of that, and three difficulties.

Handheld Games is also adding some new play modes to the mix, like a flag race where you attempt to slalom through each level along a specific path. The lights are off during a night race, so you have to work extra hard to navigate the track from memory.

Marble Madness should be up on the App Store in the next couple weeks, at a yet-to-be-determined price. We’ll have our preview video up as soon as we get permission from the developer to post it.