PONG Quest is the hip grandchild of PONG; the grandaddy of all video games developed by Atari. It’s an Action-Adventure/RPG with PONG battles. Yes, it’s Legend of Zelda meets PONG !
48 years after the world had been introduced to PONG, and essentially to video games, we get PONG Quest, the epic adventure of a young paddle journeying across numerous dungeons to take on the challenge of the paddle king and save the paddle kingdom, fighting all kinds of paddle enemies, unlocking over 50 types of paddle balls, as well as paddle costumes and paddle accessories, solving paddlin’ puzzles along the way. Paddles !
The creative minds at Chequered Ink took Atari’s classic, and transformed it into a modern Action-Adventure game with all the story elements, progression, and customization unlocks that you would expect from a modern title, while preserving the essence of what made PONG the timeless classic that it is, the paddle wars.
When I started the game I immediately jumped to Classic mode to get my fix of PONG, a game I played endlessly in the arcades as a kid, a game formula so simple I never thought it left room for improvement, but boy was I wrong ! As soon as I started the Quest Mode I immediately admired the humor, the clever narrative, and the simple, colorful hub world that navigates you to the different dungeons. And after embarking on my quest in the first dungeon, I immediately forgot that I am supposed to be playing a PONG game, and now I am definitely playing an arcade adventure akin to the classic Legend of Zelda, that was until I stumbled upon my first enemy paddle, and was transported into a paddle battle, and there I found myself playing PONG again, but not just regular PONG, it’s PONG with powerups !
In PONG Quest it’s not just a battle of score, the player has a health bar now, and every ball bounced off the player’s paddle decreases their health by a point, and the balls aren’t regular balls, each ball has a special unique ability whether it is a ball that restores health, leeches health off the opponent paddle, a curve ball, a bullet ball, and much more. This kind of variety turns every paddle battle into a careful balance between skill and strategy of which ball to use, as well as focus and quick responses.
Apart from the main quest mode, the game also has classic mode, and multiplayer battle modes; where you can play 1-on-1 battles against a friend, or even a 4-player mayhem battle ! This game provides enough variety for endless hours of fun and reserves itself a permanent space on my precious Switch storage memory.
I very much enjoyed my time playing PONG Quest, and it is nice to see life breathed into the video game that started it all. PONG Quest it is without a doubt a spectacular game, both as an action-adventure, as well as a casual timeless classic that I won’t be putting down anytime soon even after completing quest mode. A highly recommendable title to all long-time PONG fans as well as new comers.
I couldn’t rate this amazing game less than a 9/10 !
PONG Quest is developed by the talented team at Chequered Ink, and is available now on the Nintendo eShop here
Special Thanks to Atari for the review code.