Over the past couple of days I've been playing the balls off of TNNS, Action Button Entertainment's new paddle-ball game for iOS devices. It's colourful, challenging and infinitely entertaining, and that has nothing to do with the involvement of frequent Kotaku contributor Tim Rogers.
Wait, that came out wrong.
What I meant to say is my enjoyment of the game has nothing to do with Tim Rogers. Nope, still not right.
The fact that Tim Rogers was involved in the creation of TNNS is not an enjoyability assessment factor. Awkward, but accurate; I'll go with that one.
Anyway, TNNS — it's quite good. It has pleasing colours and shapes, which is something I look for in mobile game. It features tricky bending physics, and I've always been a huge fan of how matter and energy interact.
It's got a seemingly endless amount of levels, and I like levels. Some of them are simple. Some of them are insane. Some of them are incredible machines for transporting balls to their ultimate goal.
TNNS even has local multiplayer of the sort I might play, and I'm not big on letting other people touch my iDevices with their filthy, stinking hands.
It's a great game. It's iTunes description might be better. I'll just paste that here. You'll have to get the game yourself and compare. I can't do everything.
TNNS (pronounced "Tennis") is a game about bouncing and bending balls. It's a game about keeping your eyes on balls. Sometimes there are a lot of balls. Too bad you only have two eyes.
Your psychic paddle zips to your finger. Wiggle to bend ball paths once (or twice) to make tricky shots in two hot modes.
✔ TNNS For One: It's you and a never-ending sequence of progressively trickier levels. Collect star coins; smash star boxes to proceed. Survive as long as you can. Spend money to buy power-ups to boost your scores. Brag to your friends on Facebook or Game centre.
✔ TNNS For Two: If you play TNNS with a friend, they might become your best friend . . . or your worst enemy. Bring the skills you've sharpened in single-player to a multi-ball challenge. Bend and swerve. Stage crazy fake-outs. Sink epic shots. Scream when you win; scream when you lose.
We plan to submit TNNS to the Pulitzer Prize committee. (*As of this writing, the Pulitzer Prize committee does not have a category for games. We expect them to make one.)
We also plan to submit TNNS to the Nobel Prize committee, in the "physics" category. (*As of this writing, the Nobel Prize does not accept games as submissions. We expect them to make an exception.)
Those last two paragraphs were jokes.
✔ You will never see the whole game: Each trip into the single-player endless mode of TNNS sees you through a path of levels randomly selected from over 500 hand-crafted layouts. The probability of your seeing everything in this game is about as high as the probability of your climbing Mount Everest with one hand tied behind your back. And: spoiler alert — some of the harder layouts are just plain weird.
✔ That's right — Hand-Crafted: The levels aren't random arrangements; they're premeditated first-degree obstacle gauntlets designed to always surprise you. Some blocks you break; some blocks you bump; some blocks stay put. Black holes teleport your balls. Sometimes, everything is spinning. And sometimes, it's a chaos freak-out. TNNS is like a pinball machine married a jazz band and had a million weird babies.
✔ Your iOS Device is now a portable party: Anywhere you bring your iPad or iPhone is a place where people are going to like you unconditionally. Experience the shrieking joy of Party Mode — where players compete for goals . . . or for stars. Or for both! It's your party: just keep your eyes on the balls. Bend; be tricky. Out-think your opponent. One thing you won't have to think about is Having Fun: we've already done that thinking for you.
✔ Power up, get down: Spend the stars you've earned in single-player or multiplayer to buy power-ups at the in-game shop. Make your paddle bigger. Double the coins you'll earn. Start your next game with an extra ball (or three). Equip boosters to three slots that you can activate when you want: pop a multi-ball to triple your fun, or launch a fireball to tear a stage apart — if you can control its awesome power.
✔ Customize: Maybe you'd prefer the background look like a football field. Maybe you want the ball to look like a basketball. We like you, so we want you to be happy. Head to the customise shop and go nuts.
✔ Play how you want: It's your iOS device. So play how you want. TNNS is a landmark first* in iOS app Design: the game does not rotate as you rotate your device. The scoreboard, however, does. Play right handed — or left-handed. Play with the screen held upright and the paddle at the bottom. Or play with the paddle at the top, if you're feeling feisty. (*Note: Statistic refers only to the 148 apps we have evaluated out of millions available.)
✔ You'll want more: So we'll give you more. There are more levels in this game than you can ever see. And we're making more. Downloading TNNS today is just the beginning — we're going to keep pumping it full of new levels. We've already made a game you literally won't be able to get enough of; now watch us keep making too much of it.
Full Disclosure: You don't really want full disclosure. There is information out there that would blow your mind.
TNNS [iTunes App Store]