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Peggle is a highly addictive series of puzzle games from developer PopCap Games, available for purchase via Valve's Steam service and Microsoft's Xbox Games Store.The goal is simple: you're given ten balls and you have to knock out all the orange pegs on the screen by bouncing the ball off the various pieces of scene geometry. Succeed, and you're off to the next level. Beat all the regular levels and you can then try your hand at the challenges, which are the same levels, but with certain conditions that must be met to beat the challenge. Conditions include getting a certain minimum score (harder than it sounds), playing a variation of the usual level with more orange pegs than normal, or clearing every single peg to name the three most common ones.The Peggle series currently consists of six games:
Peggle Deluxe: The original game. 55 levels and 75 challenges.
Peggle (iPod): An iPod port of Peggle Deluxe that is identical gameplay-wise, but features numerous minor visual modifications to suit the iPod's capabilities as well as providing 12 balls on level start instead of 10. All the same levels and challenges as Deluxe. Sold only through the iTunes Store.
Peggle Extreme: A sort of demo version of the game originally released as part of Valve's Orange Box, it contains unique levels themed for Half-Life 2, Team Fortress 2, and Portal and an extra Counter-Strike themed level. 10 levels and 5 challenges. Available for free on Steam.
Peggle Nights: Dream themed game. 60 new levels and 60 challenges.
Peggle Dual Shot: The Nintendo DS version of the game. Contains all of the levels from Peggle Deluxe and Peggle Nights, a new "bonus underground" mode, and a collection of new levels featuring art from Q Entertainment.
Peggle 2: Released December of 2013 and so far the latest installment. Has a new animated visual style, new levels, and four new Peggle Masters (with Bjorn being the only returning [playable] Master thus far), each with their own leitmotifs and abilities.
Boring but Practical: Some of the more basic specials, like the Super Guide and the Pyramid, can definitely come in handy on some levels.
Boss Rush: One of the challenges revolves around beating consecutive Peggle Master duels.
Bowling For Ratings: Splork's obsession with round things naturally leads him to bowling in his stage in Nights. His WoW getup also contains a staff topped with a bowling ball.
The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: The game's AI. Even watching Demo Mode is convincing enough. Heck, just shoot a Zen Ball to see it—one of the few times you can actually use this to your advantage.
Cute Kitten: Kat Tut, and in Nights, Lord Cinderbottom's stages consist of him saving the cats and kittens of a town from a fire.
Excuse Plot: The game's narrative premise is that you are learning to play Peggle at the famous Peggle Institute, and therefore must play endless levels of Peggle. One wonders who is willing to fund such a programme
Fireballs: Lord Cinderbottom's powerup - a big freaking ball 'o fire.
Granola Girl: Tula....which kinda makes sense in a way, since she's a flower. Lampshaded by Tula herself in the opening of one of her levels:
It's easy for levels to devolve into whether you can land in the bucket twice in a row.
The placement of pegs at the start of a level may cause players to just go right ahead and hit restart if things like green pegs are in impossible locations, or if certain orange pegs are in obscure areas.
Mission Pack Sequel: Nights added one more Peggle master and Ace medals, but it's essentially 60 more levels and 60 more challenges.
Mundane Made Awesome: Once you get the last orange peg, the game goes into super-close-up, super-slow-motion on the ball while Beethoven's Ninth Symphony belts out at full blast, almost as if you had just achieved world peace by kicking cancer right in the gonads.
Heck, Master Hu's band in his dream is even called "The Hu".
If you pull off a particularly awesome shot, Jimmy Lightning will pop out and yell a Totally Radical phrase in much the same way that Dan Forden does in Mortal Kombat. This isn't a coincidence, either; one of his phrases is actually "Toasty!"
Serious Business: The Excuse Plot of the game is that you're at "Peggle Academy" being taught by "Peggle Masters". Why there's an entire academy set up to teach people how to throw silver balls around is beyond understanding.
The Smurfette Principle: Tula vs. 9 male masters (presumably Renfield the pumpkin and Splork the alien are male) in the original. Nights added a second girl in Marina.
Totally Radical: Jimmy Lightning. Even when he isn't the assist character he'll still butt in occasionally to remark how "tubular" that shot was.
Video Game Tutorial: A subtle one. The first character you meet is Bjorn, whose special skill explicitly shows the player how the ball will bounce after striking the first target. Lining up shots for favorable second and subsequent bounces is the entire point of Peggle; Bjorn's special skill is really just training wheels for the shots you'll need to make later on.