Quarth

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Quarth
Quarth Poster.png
Arcade flyer for Quarth.
Developer(s) Konami
Publisher(s) Konami and subsidiaries (Ultra Games in US)
Composer(s) Norio Hanzawa
Platform(s) Arcade, MSX2, NEC PC-9801, Sharp X68000, Famicom, Game Boy, Mobile phone, Virtual Console
Release date(s) Arcade
Q4 1989
Game Boy
JP 19900316March 16, 1990

NA 1990
MSX2
1990
Famicom
JP 19900413April 13, 1990
i-mode phones
EU 2005
Virtual Console
Wii (MSX)
JP 20100202February 2, 2010
Nintendo 3DS (Game Boy)JP 20120222February 22, 2012
NA 20120927September 27, 2012
Wii U (MSX)
JP 20140423April 23, 2014

Genre(s) Puzzle game/Shoot 'em up
Distribution ROM cartridge

Quarth (クオース?) is a hybrid puzzle game/shoot 'em up developed by Konami which was released in 1989 as an arcade game, sold as Block Hole outside Japan.

Besides the arcade version, there were also ports of the game to the MSX2 (with a built-in SCC chip), Famicom, and Game Boy—home releases used the Quarth name worldwide (with the exception of the Game Boy Color release in Europe of Konami GB Collection Vol. 2, where the game was renamed to the generic title Block Game for unknown reasons).

Quarth was released on the Konami Net i-mode service as Block Quarth, with an updated Block Quarth DX in 2001. It was released without the "DX" suffix in 2005, and was made globally available through Konami Net licensing on many i-mode services offered by mobile operators. In Europe, for example, it was available from O2 UK, O2 Ireland, and Telefónica Spain.

In 2005, Konami also included the game in the Nintendo DS title Ganbare Goemon: Tōkai Dōchū Ōedo Tengu ri Kaeshi no Maki. An emulated version of the game was released in 2006 for PlayStation 2 in Japan as part of the Oretachi Geasen Zoku Sono-series.

Gameplay[edit]

Screenshot from Quarth on the MSX

Quarth is a combination of Tetris-style gameplay and a fixed shooter in the Space Invaders tradition. The player's focus is on falling blocks, and the action is geometrical. Rather than arranging the blocks together to make a row of disappearing blocks, a spaceship positioned at the bottom of the screen shoots blocks upwards to make the falling block pattern into squares or rectangles. Once the blocks have been arranged properly, the shape is destroyed and the player is awarded points based on the shape's size. The blocks continue to drop from the top of the screen in various incomplete shapes. As each level progresses, the blocks drop at greater speed and frequency. There are also various power-ups which could be located to increase your ship's speed, among other bonuses.

The game continues until the blocks reach the dotted line at the bottom of the screen, whereupon the player's ship is "quarthed," crushed flat.

Multi-player[edit]

Like most arcade games, the game featured a multi-player mode. In the arcade, this was demonstrated via a split screen with Player 1 on the left and Player 2 on the right. For the Game Boy, multiplayer required the Game Boy Link Cable with each player able to view only their fields on their own Game Boys.

The MSX2 and Famicom versions had two different 2-player modes: Mode A, where both players worked together on the same game, and Mode B which was the same as the arcade split-screen game.

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