The Brickening is another Arkanoid style game. I view it as a "no frills" version of the Android game Galaxy Breakout because it's just a plain and simple breakout game with power-ups. There's no story... there's not even any "flvaor text" like Arkanoid had. You're just pounding away at bricks in level after level, but that's ok because this game has a trick or two of its own up its sleeve.
First the basics. There's a paddle that you control at the bottom of the screen. There are four kinds of bricks: red, yellow, green, and steel. The steel ones can't be destroyed, but the red, yellow, and green ones take 1, 2 and 3 hits to destroy and as you hit them they color degrade so you can keep track of how many hits are left. I'm a bit intrigued by the color order as in the USA generally red means stop, yellow means yield, and green means go so I'd have expected green to be one hit and so forth.
The game includes 100 levels and a level editor so that you can upload/download levels with other users. Hopefully that will take off, but I suspect that will need to be more of an author supported thing. The graphics are basic and the sound adequate. The two real nice things about this game, though, are how smooth it plays (I have not seen a game where the paddle tracks as close to my finger as well as it does here and given the importance of control in a game that's a pretty big deal) and that the author was clever enough to provide some space where I can place my finger for moving the paddle BELOW the play area. No longer am I blocking my view of the game with my giant hand.
The game also features a full bevy of power-ups: +3 balls, laser cannon, sticky paddle, barricade (a layer of bricks below you paddle to make that extra save), ...etc. I was particularly impressed when I got a +3 balls power-up followed by another +3 balls so I had 7 or so balls on the screen at once for about a tenth of a second. Let's just say it's hard to keep track of that many balls and that it was quite a rush.
This game is well worth a buck. There are plenty of levels and the game plays so smoothly that I really enjoyed it. I've never been too big on story modes in these kids of games anyway... they always seem a bit convoluted. This game is all about the action and takes a step back towards the genre's successful roots in the game Breakout while leaving in the goodness that is power-ups. 4/5 stars. There is also a demo version in the Android Market that is available now.