The Ball (video game)
UK cover art
|Director(s)||Sjoerd De Jong|
|Engine||Unreal Engine 3|
|Platform(s)||Microsoft Windows, Ouya, OnLive|
|Release||October 26, 2010|
The game was one of the OnLive's UK launch titles, and one of the 13 games contained in the Potato Sack Bundle, which was a part of the Potato Sack Alternate Reality Game, promoting Portal 2's release.
On June 7, 2016 the spiritual successor, The Solus Project was released on PC and consoles by Teotl and Grip Digital. The game features a very different setting, featuring an astronaut in the future stranded on an alien world, but the games share a universe and some themes.
The Ball is a first-person action adventure game. The player controls an archaeologist trapped in an underground city, armed with only an artifact that can attract or repel a large metal ball. To progress in the game, the ball must be guided into trigger the puzzle mechanisms, act as a platform in platforming or defend the player in combat. As the player progresses, the ball will gain additional abilities, strengthening its combat ability or allowing the player to progress in platforming and puzzles.
The game contains an eight-level single player campaign and a survival mode focused on combat.
The Ball is developed by Teotl Studios, a small Swedish independent studio consisting of three developers: Sjoerd De Jong, level designer and creative director, Markus Palviainen, art director, and Markus Arvidsson, programmer. Fifteen other independent developers were also involved in the project, including Theodore Wohng, composer and sound designer.
To develop his game, Sjoerd De Jong had used several sources as inspiration: Portal for its simple and effective design, Unreal Tournament for its style and atmosphere, Tomb Raider for the mysterious and intriguing atmosphere that emanates from the individual settings and, on the whole, early first-person shooters which were set primarily in dark dungeons and castles.
Originally developed as a mod for Unreal Tournament III at 2008, it was ported over to the Unreal Development Kit to enable a standalone commercial release. A demo version of the game was released on November 5, 2009, the official game was released on October 26, 2010.
The commercial release generated a mixed critical response, receiving a rating of 68% from review aggregator Metacritic and 73.83% from GameRankings. PC Gamer US awarded the game 81/100, calling it "A joyous and addictive action puzzler."
IGN gave the game a 7/10, criticizing the story presentation and combat but praising the variety of gameplay.
- "The Solus Project - What Is Solus?".
- Maxwell McGee (Nov 15, 2010). "The Ball Review". Gamespot. Retrieved March 14, 2014.
- Evan Lahti (Jan 18, 2011). "The Ball Review". PC Gamer.
- Teotl Studios staff. "Meet the Developers".
- Teotl Studios staff (Jul 30, 2010). "Developer Friday – Theodore Wohng". Teotl Studios.
- "The Ball is Rolling…". Mod DB. Oct 17, 2008.
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- Teotl Studios staff (Oct 26, 2010). "Release!". Teotl Studios.
- "The Ball Coming To Ouya". Ouya Report.
- "The Ball for PC". Game Rankings.
- "The Ball Critic Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved Nov 29, 2010.
- Kristan Reed (Oct 29, 2010). "The Ball". Eurogamer.
- Charles Onyett (Oct 25, 2010). "The Ball Review". IGN.
- Epic Games staff (Aug 4, 2009). "Phase 3 Winners -$1 Million Intel Make Something Unreal Contest". Epic Games. Retrieved Nov 29, 2010.
- John Callaham (Feb 18, 2010). "The Haunted wins grand prize in second Make Something Unreal mod contest". Big Download. Retrieved Nov 29, 2010.
- PC Gamer US Staff. "PC Gamer US's Games of the Year Awards". PC Gamer US.
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