Every once in a rare while on Steam, there’s a shining diamond like Indie Pogo. But for every second Steam is running there is a wave of shovelware and effortless cash grabs slapped onto the storefront for customers to fall for. I don’t want to say I was an idiot for spending trading card revenue on this game; at the same time, I had a glimmer of hope that should have never been there. As someone that adores Marble Blast Gold from the PCs of yesteryear, Crazy Ball Adventures was a game I thought could be a void-filler for a new Marble Blast even if it was to be vastly unpolished. Then I actually played the game.
Right off the bat Crazy Ball Adventures looks like a third-rate effort from the late ’90s and not in an endearing way by any means. It’s less about nostalgia tickling and more about the developers just being lazy with the visual design. None of the backgrounds change nor do the tiles and textures used on the levels. The game looks exactly the same throughout its duration. I mean…I guess the water looks fine, relative to everything else onscreen. That’s only because it seems remotely detailed.
One interesting design choice made by the developers here is that you’re actually able to play your own music over the game. This is thanks to the fact that they haven’t bothered putting any music in it whatsoever! The title screen gets its own music but everything else? Nada! The rest of the way you’ll just hear your ball jump and bounce. This makes for a very lonely sounding game, as if it wasn’t already painfully clear how much effort was put into Crazy Ball‘s presentation in the first place.
Similarly to Marble Blast Gold, you’re a marble rolling along a level. The premise is to get the end of each level without falling off. You could also jump to hop over gaps or keep yourself balanced. Whereas the fondly remembered classic uses as much potential of the concept as possible, Crazy Ball Adventures doesn’t even try for the bare minimum. You’d be lucky to find new obstacles, as the game loves to repeat the same stuff over and over again. If all of its features were used in a single level, there may be potential for a decent first level. Unfortunately, all of those things are instead implemented sparingly. There is no challenge here nor any sense of reward for overcoming anything. It’s just one big meandering piece of crap.
When it comes to games like these, one may wonder “How the heck did this make it on Steam?” That is, before he or she realizes that the answer is right in front of them: It’s a Steam game. Because of the lack of care put into moderating what comes in, developers are able to equally not care about what they submit to the platform. What you see is what you get, and what you get is awful.
Copy purchased by reviewer