Klax

For: Arcade, Atari 2600, IBM PC/Compatibles, NES

Genres

Main Genre:
Action , Strategy
Sub-Genre:
Puzzle Solving
Visual Presentation:
Fixed Screen
Gameplay Style:
Falling Block Puzzle

Overview

IBM VGA version of Klax
IBM VGA version of Klax
Klax is an action/puzzle game first released in arcades in 1990 by Atari Games and then ported to several computers and game consoles. In the game players have the goal of catching various colored tiles off of a conveyer belt and aligning them into rows of like color to make them disappear. Klax can be played by one player or with two players simultaneously using a vertical split screen.

Gameplay

The game screen in Klax is broken up into two parts with a conveyer belt located in the top half and the playfield which can hold 25 tiles in a 5x5 grid along the bottom. A never-ending supply of tiles appears at the far end of the conveyer belt and is moved towards the player; by controlling a flipper device at the edge of the belt which can move left and right, players can catch a tile and either place them in the playfield or fling them back up the conveyer belt. The tiles appear in a variety of colors; if three or more tiles of the same color are placed in a row in the playfield, they will disappear (this is called a "Klax") and if there are any tiles on top of the tiles that are removed they will fall down to fill the empty space. Klax's can be aligned either horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. Additionally some tiles that appear will be flashing different colors; these tiles are wildcards and will act as any color when placed into the playfield. It is possible to have multiple Klax's occur simultaneously (such as a vertical and a horizontal with an overlapping common tile) or to have Klax's cascade by tiles forming an additional Klax after they fall into empty space left behind.

Each level Klax has a certain goal that needs to be met in order to be completed. Goals include completing a given number of Klax's of any kind, completing a given number of Klax's of a particular kind (such as diagonal), surviving long enough for a certain number of tiles to appear, or earning a given number of points. Klax features 100 levels in total organized into groups of five; at the end of each fifth level, players have the option of skipping ahead either 5 or 10 levels; skipping levels results in more difficult gameplay, however more drops are allowed and additional bonus points are earned. As the levels progress the game becomes more difficulty by having more tiles appearing at once and an increase in speed.

If players fail to catch one of the tiles when it reaches the end of the conveyor belt, it is considered a "drop"; the flipper device also has a limit of 5 tiles, and attempting to catch a 6th tile will also result in a drop. Players begin the game with a limited number of drops allowed and the game is over either when they have all been used or all 25 spaces in the playfield have a tile in them.

Credits

Platform: Atari 2600
Programmed by: Steve DeFrisco
Platform: IBM PC/Compatibles
IBM version written by: H. Gecko
Thanks to: Teque (for all their help)
Graphics by: Richard Browne, Teque, Tengen
Platform: NES
Original Game Design: Mark Stephen Pierce, David Akers
Programming: David O'Riva
Graphics: Greg Williams
Music: LX Rudis, David O'Riva
Special Thanks to: Mike Alexander
Manual and Packaging Artwork: Louis Saekow Design

Pictures

Click on a picture below to view a larger version.
Arcade Version

Documentation

Instruction Manual
Atari 2600
Instruction Manual
NES

Packaging/Label Styles

This game has releases with the following standardized packaging styles: