Crüe Ball is a digital pinball game endorsed by the Heavy Metal band Mötley Crüe for the Sega Genesis. Developed by NuFX and published by Electronic Arts in 1992, it was originally designed by veteran Pinball artist Mark Sprenger with music by pinball composer Brian Schmidt.
The game is nominally based on the exploits of Crüe mascot Alister Fiend, whose attempts to play loud music all night is abruptly disrupted by Craig, the "Keeper of the Wall." Alister must play through nine scrolling pinball playfields filled with bumpers, gates, ramps, maggots, monsters, skeletons, and other obstacles. Alister's goal in each stage is to smash down the Wall that separates him from the Volume Knob, then "Crank it Up" to advance to the next level. Conquer all nine levels, defeat Craig, then discover the truth behind his anti-Metal crusade.
Crüe Ball demonstrates the following tropes:
- Anthropomorphic Personification: Mr. Gore, the Spirit of Anti-Metal.
- Bizarre Alien Biology: Many of the enemies qualify as this. One example would be the Cerebral Cyclops, which look like a brain with one eye and a short tail.
- Bonus Stage/Breaking Out: A hidden game has you play a Breakout-style game using a flying Flipper Sled against exploding skeletons.
- Dem Bones: The Bad Bones are legless Skeletons.
- Dolled-Up Installment: The game was originally developed under the names "Twisted Flipper" and "Headbanger Ball", but MTV balked at a license. Mötley Crüe was added late in development.
- Excuse Plot: If you can figure out how playing pinball relates to playing Heavy Metal, let us know.
- Damage-Sponge Boss/Giant Enemy Crab: Crabula, who releases numerous maggots and requires numerous hits to destroy.
- Licensed Pinball Table: Duh.
- Living Statue: The Beethoven Dudes are moving marble busts.
- Loud of War: Alister Fiend does this in the opening cinematic, waking up his sleeping neighborhood with his music.
- The Man Behind the Man: Craig ultimately answers to Mr. Gore, the Spirit of Anti-Metal.
- Monster Clown: These are one of the playfield monsters you must battle.
- New Media Are Evil: This is the motivation given by Craig.
- No Fair Cheating: Averted with the nudging feature — no matter how much you shake the (virtual) table, it won't tilt.
- Real Song Theme Tune: The game features the Crüe songs "Dr. Feelgood", "Live Wire", and "Home Sweet Home", but only from the "Music Demo" on the title screen. The in-game music consists of cycled PCMs by Brian Schmidt.
- Skill Shot: Plunge the ball so that it hits any of the scoring rollovers (worth between 5,000 and 50,000 points). You get zero points if you overshoot the 50K rollover.
- Take That!: Mr. Gore, the Man Behind the Man, is based on Al and Tipper Gore's founding of the Parent's Music Resource Center, which infamously crusaded against metal bands and other "scandalous" acts in the 80's.
- Top-Down View
- Tornado Move: The Sister Twisters.
- Waddling Head: The Dread Heads, skulls with sandaled feet that wander the play-fields.
- Your Head A-Splode: This is how Craig is defeated.