Skee-Ball 2 Review

Skee-Ball 2 doesn’t do very much, but what it does do, it does very well. The key question behind whether it’s worth a purchase is whether you value what it does.

Simply put, this game is a proposition of nostalgia. If you ventured into an arcade during their heyday throughout the 80’s and 90’s, you probably remember the different games which allowed you to earn tickets that could then be exchanged for cheap, sometimes-lame prizes. Chief among these– seemingly a staple of just about any such arcade or amusement park gameroom– was skee-ball, a physical game which allowed you to take a series of allotted wooden balls and roll them up a ramp and hopefully into a plastic tube-like target, ideally one marked for higher points.

Here comes trouble.

That is the experience Skee-Ball 2 promises and delivers on– about as much as an iPhone game can, at any rate. There is a surprising amount of depth beyond the real thing here, as the game allows you to use power-ups (such as rolling three balls at once), score bonus points when targets glow, and exchange your tickets for prizes you can use in-game, such as balls which have a tie-dyed look to them or new lanes. You can even affect the table by tilting your device, which puts a little extra ‘spin’ on the ball, and when you come to your final ball, a dramatic zooming-in on the ball in slow motion takes place. There are some in-app purchases as well, which allow you to get more tickets or more tokens, should you decide you need them, and there are daily bonuses as well.

The graphics and sound are suitable, though not spectacular– not that they really need to be. It has great physics which, like the graphics and sound, simulate the experience very well. But overall, it feels sort of like a busywork kind of game– that is, repeating tasks in order to gain new items and such so that you can continue repeating them in a slightly different way, at least if you intend to ride it out beyond the initial nostalgia rush.

“…So. Wanna check out Mortal Kombat?”

For the same price, it should be noted that Midway Arcade provides a bare-bones but relatively comparable skee-ball experience on top of everything else included in the game’s package, so if you already have that, you may not want to bother with this one. But if you’re a real skee-ball afficionado, then you should find a pretty good time with Skee-Ball 2.

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