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Monday, 23 August 2010 04:42

Never BallNeverball is a 3D platform game similar to Super Monkey Ball. It is currently available for Windows 2000/XP, Mac OS X, Linux, FreeBSD, Dreamcast and iPhone OS. Neverball is free software under the terms of the GNU General Public License


Never BallThe main gameplay of Neverball is based on moving a ball using gravity by tilting the game world, not directly controlling the ball (it is somewhat similar to the game Labyrinth  without the holes in the middle). The mouse (or a similar pointing device), keyboard, or joystick tilt the level to help guide the ball to a goal, via an obstacle course, with a set time limit. Moving platforms and other crazy objects get in the way, making levels progressively harder. To unlock the goal on each level, the player must collect a required amount of coins. Coins come in three different colors: yellow, red and blue. Yellow coins are worth 1, red are worth 5 and blue are worth 10 coins or points. Collecting 100 coins in "Challenge Mode" gains an extra life.
The current release (v1.5.2) contains 141 levels, split into 6 level sets - as well as 134 holes in the Neverputt subgame. The first Neverball level set is Easy (for beginners), and the other two are for more expert players (Medium, and Hard respectively), plus three "expansion" sets.
There are also additional level sets that are available for download from third party websites, but these are not (yet) endorsed by the official Neverball project - although it does occasionally include new levels (or light modifications thereof) into its package.
Neverball features other challenges such as collecting as many coins as possible within the time limit (Most Coins), to see how quickly the player can finish a level (Best Times), or to see how quickly a player can finish a level while getting enough coins to "unlock" the level (Fastest Unlock). Easy, Medium and Hard high scores are available for each and every level.
Three camera modes are available at the press of a key. Pressing F1 switches to the Chase Camera, which rotates to follow the ball quickly and closely. Pressing F2 switches to the Lazy Camera, which is the same as the Chase Camera, but responds slower. Pressing F3 switches to Manual Camera, in which the camera will only rotate when you press the specific buttons for it (default is left/right mouse buttons).
Neverball features a replay recording system, which records gameplay in any level. Recording begins automatically when the level begins. Replays can be saved when a level is cleared, or when the ball falls off the level. In 1.4.0, up to 64 replays can be saved, with support extended to 256 in 1.5.0, and the limitation removed in 1.5.2.

Neverball allows the creation of levels with GtkRadiant, the level creation program for popular games such as Quake. GtkRadiant currently has versions for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.

Neverball has relatively high system requirements for smooth play, but it is possible to lower the resolution, the graphics and sound compression to get Neverball running faster on more modest systems. A processor that runs at least 1000 MHz, and a good graphics card are recommended for fast running gameplay.


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