Monster Pinball for iPhone review

If you’re of a certain age, pinball will no doubt evoke memories of seaside towns and wet Bank Holiday Mondays, taking shelter in amusement arcades that had seen better days. Often themed, occasionally around a popular film, TV show or band, pinball could happily occupy a stray hour or two. The skill in keeping a small silver ball in play often proved addictive and that obsession has transferred well to the iPhone, despite the limitations of a diminutive screen.

Quite a few pinball-themed games are now available via the Apple iTunes App Store and Monster Pinball is a recent addition to the growing throng. This iPhone app is the first from Macclesfield-based Matmi and sports the bright and distinct styling that has helped the company win an impressive client base. Monster Pinball has stunning animated graphics spread across six interconnected tables, with characters that are very much in the designer toy mode.

Enhanced by a quirky soundtrack of suitably out-of-space sounds, play is fast and furious with multiple flippers adding to the fun. Time soon passed playing Monster Pinball, and while not quite transported back to seaside holidays of old, the game helped pass a long journey and would no doubt be an entertaining distraction for the little ones in your life. Gameplay is simple without being too repetitive, and suitable for young and old alike.

Monster Pinball isn't meant to be a simulator, a digital port of a traditional pinball table, and that might be a disappointment for anyone expecting fully realistic retro fun and games. Ball physics lack the full feel and quirks of the real thing and Monster Pinball skill levels remain on the same plane despite a selection of tables to play. We'd also like to see some half-hidden cubbyholes for future versions where additional points and goals could be achieved, while a few tasks and challenges would not go amiss.

OUR VERDICT

Monsters and pinball prove to be perfect partners and Monster Pinball is a fine start from new media design team Matmi. Although there are several pinball-based iPhone apps available to download – some more authentic than this one – great graphics ensure Monster Pinball provides novel and addictive gameplay that's also a lot of fun.

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