“One of the goals was to make a Smash Brothers type game that is deterministic. It has no randomness to it,” said Noah Sasso, whose BaraBariBall plays like an 8-bit mash-up of Nintendo’s brawler and volleyball. BaraBariBall ditches the power-ups descending from on high and the jarring stage shifts in favor of a giant moon-shaped ball and some super-chunky graphics.
I played Sasso at his own game during the TooManyGames Expo, and while challenging the developer of a skill-based game went about as well as you could expect, the game was still immensely fun. Feverishly frenetic, but instantly accessible, it actually reminded me of how much fun Smash Brothers used to be before it was ruined by the garbage that constantly pollutes the screen. As the match begins, a ball drops from the sky. and the game becomes a frantic competition to grab the ball and chuck it off the opponent’s ledge into the water below. It’s the same theory as Smash Brothers except you’re throwing an object off the ledge to score instead of the enemy. That also means that you have to defend your own side of the map and make sure the ball doesn’t wind up in your side of the pond. It’s an ingenious twist that leads to insane back-and-forth brawls and heroic saves. Read more