Screwball Scramble: The Ball Trailer

By John Walker on February 18th, 2010 at 9:23 am.

I think his face may explain where the ball is.

You may well have previously played The Ball. Toltec Studio’s Unreal 3 mod generated a lot of attention back in 2008 during development, and then was released in 2009. It’s sort of Weighted Companion Cube: The Movie. You move around the world in first person, but you interact by manipulating a large lead ball. It’s used for puzzle solving, as well as crushing your foes. Now the project has become commercial, and is due to be released this Summer. Which means a new trailer has been created, and it’s a goodun.

The final mod version is still available to download, and you can find it here. It’s just over 500MB. The full commercial version is promising six hours of game, and a giant gorilla. Enjoy the trailer:

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21 Comments »

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  1. Dan S says:

    Wow, definately an interesting concept. I’ll keep an eye on this one, it seems like opening up this engine is paying off with the indy community. Anyone played the mod?

  2. PixelCody says:

    I knew it was meant to be a good mod but I didn’t know The Ball looked that slick! There’s definitely talent on that team. Time to reinstall UT3.

    • Scalene says:

      Oh DANGIT.

      Just remembered it’d be using UT3. I had it, but lost the CD in the move… hrmph.

    • PixelCody says:

      If there’s any chance you write down your CD keys or keep them separate from your disks you could plonk that into Steam and download it from there.

    • Blather Blob says:

      @PixelCody: Instead of reinstalling UT3, there’s also a standalone UDK version which came out with the UDK as a demonstration of what it could be used for. I don’t know if it’s quite the same as the UT3 mod version though, as they describe it as “basically a 40 minute long compilation level that we made using parts from our various levels [from the WIP commercial version].” But they also say the UDK version is less memory intensive than the UT3 version, which seems hard to compare if they aren’t both the same content.

  3. Scalene says:

    How do you fight a gorilla… with a ball?

    Do you put a blonde wig and a dress on it and hope he steals it and climbs the Empire State Building?

  4. RiptoR says:

    There should be a UDK version too if I’m not mistaken. Not sure if it contains all levels of the final mod though.

  5. JonSolo says:

    Maybe it’s overused, but I think a better title would have been “The Sphere”. Great trailer, though. Good to see some innovation in an FPS.

    • John Walker says:

      Kieron did a (horrible) sphere-based pun last time we wrote about it.

      And how can you not love a reference to Screwball Scramble?!

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      Lambchops says:

      I will forever have frustrated memories of that bloody rickety bridge bit at the start. And the parallel bars in the middle. And the bouncy steps. And getting out of the damn maze, And most of all the bloody fucking catapult. So pretty much all of it really! It’s sheer genius in retrospect, a game designed to completely frustrate children that is still kind of fun.

    • Clovis says:

      That description of Screwball Scramble made me think it was a knock-off of Marble Madness. Google explained that you were talking about a meatspace game.

    • terry says:

      Preferred Kongman, because it was a lot easier. Those parallel bars on Scramble were too murderous for my tiny noggin.

      Edit: for tag gibberish

    • Caiman says:

      How about The Bollock? No?

  6. Spacewalk says:

    It’s as if QPong was reimagined with gorillas and zombies.

  7. jsutcliffe says:

    Rolling ball games are always pleasing. I think they remind me of my Helter Skelter type toys, though they always make me wish someone would do a proper remake of Marble Madness.

  8. Pantsman says:

    Giant ZOMBIE gorilla, you mean!

  9. suibhne says:

    One of the folks behind this is Hourences, the best professional third-party mapmaker (which is to say, the best mapmaker period) from Unreal Tournament 2003 and Unreal Tournament 2004. A lot of his maps were included with Epic’s games or later bundled with expansions, and one of the basic problems with UT3 was that Epic moved all of its development in-house and mostly cut off their contracts with great designers like this.

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    UW says:

    I don’t think any screenshot has ever singlehandedly sold a game to me, but something about the one posted at the beginning of this.. yep.. that’s done it.

  11. The Dark One says:

    That Gorilla’s skin looks like my grandmother’s just before they started lowering her medical steroid dosage.

  12. Y3k-Bug says:

    EPIC should be really proud of the work they’ve done with the Unreal 3 engine. Absolutely gorgeous graphics that runs like a dream on even lowly computers.

    Just sublime. I wonder how bad they’ve hurt id’s profitability, I haven’t seen anyone use their engine in ages. id seems to have fallen into obscurity.