capsule review

Parasol Wallop

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Parasol Wallop is an interesting twist on the classic brickbashing theme, which has been around since the earliest days of arcade gaming. It’s also family-friendly—although the fast pace is likely to frustrate gamers with underdeveloped hand-eye coordination.

In Parasol Wallop, you are little Audrey, a pink-haired young lass who must fend off monsters attacking from the sky. Armed only with your magic umbrella, you’ll bounce a ball against layers of bricks overhead, in order to knock monsters to the ground and then cage them. If you begin to lose control of the ball, a quick twirl of the magnetic parasol will attract it. But learning to use that special twirl properly takes some time—the magnetic attraction can also pull the ball to the ground and kill you.

The game contains about 80 levels and is spread over four differently themed worlds, including a beach and an industrialized wasteland. An upbeat soundtrack and whimsical sound effects complete the package. The game runs in windowed mode—a feature I particularly appreciate because it means I can leave other applications running in the background and pause Parasol Wallop if, say, an important e-mail comes in.

With 32-bit graphics and OpenGL effects, Parasol Wallop isn’t the lightweight confection it might seem from the screenshot. There’s a lot of game here—especially for fans of the brickbashing genre. However, the system requirements are relatively modest. They call for a 450MHz G3 or faster.

The Bottom Line

A refreshing change from the endless stream of shooters and strategy games on the market, Parasol Wallop harks back to a time when games were a lot of fun without being overly complicated.

Brickbashing gets a new twist in Parasol Wallop.
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