Game Circus (for Android)
In Paplinko, players drop a ball and bounce it off pegs, racking up points. As the collisions destroy the pegs and others respawn, the board is constantly changing while special pegs carry enhancements such as teleporters, multi-balls and score and multiplier bonuses. This adds just enough order to the unpredictable trajectory to suggest a skillful strategy can change the ball’s descent. At the bottom of the board, the balls land in a slot with a reward—currency, extra balls, puzzle pieces, prizes or special events—or an evil slime creature that wreaks havoc on your high score. It’s a lot going on for a game centered on dropping a ball, but that’s the beauty of it—there’s always a goal or prize just out of reach. Incentivized gameplay isn’t new but Paplinko incentivizes the incentives—collecting a set of prizes or completing a puzzle unlocks additional bonuses and collectibles. Though the free game uses microtransactions, it also allows players to trade in-game currency for additional balls if they don’t want to wait for the ticking clock to refill their supply. Paplinko is fun, colorful, addictive and a reminder that the simplicity in casual games can be well designed and executed.