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Iggy's Reckin' Balls [N64]


Iggy's Reckin' Balls (N64): Hard Mode Difficulty, Iggy's Challenge and Time Trials

Enter a parallel universe where humans cannot walk and aren't bipedal. Instead, these creatures rotate their gourds from Point A to Point B with grotesquely extended arms or tongues. The outcome of this abhorrent evolutionary track is a cacophony of slithering sounds and battle cries...


Worse still, these subhumans compete in platform races and steamroll their slimy heads over the faces of their enemies. Let the outlandish games begin!

The Challenge? Complete all Worlds on Hard Mode and beat all Par Times in Time Trials.

Is this a worthy Challenge? Let's find out.

Iggy's Reckin' Balls (N64): Hard Mode Difficulty, Iggy's Challenge and Time Trials

Gameplay

Iggy’s Reckin’ Balls is Challenging to the peripherals and demands forethought. Numerous platform variants and interfering obstacles force players into a contradictory position of patience in a fast-paced environment. A compounding component are the A.I.s natural understanding of the endless amount of Levels. Observe A.I. movement on Hard Mode and they hardly stutter as they proceed through this complex tiered universe. Thus, players are left to their wit to make headway while attempting to hinder enemies.


At first glance, moving balls on a rope from point A to Point B appears relatively straightforward. But, players soon realize that these strange Worlds exhibit kaleidoscope-esque platforms that appear to defy 1990s gaming physics.


Iggy's Reckin' Balls (N64): Hard Mode Difficulty, Iggy's Challenge and Time Trials

To begin, players have an initial list of characters to choose from and may unlock others along their Iggy’s Reckin’ Balls journey. Characters have very minor traits related to racing including both innate speed and maximum velocity on boosts. One noble gamer took the time to record each character's speed as seen in VGA322's YouTube video.

Iggy's Reckin' Balls (N64): Hard Mode Difficulty, Iggy's Challenge and Time Trials

Lord Rigor chose the character Sonny because he embodies the Sun. Egotistical yet dependable, Sonny the yellow glowing head represents stellar dominance through his spoken metaphors. Upon winning in a race, Sonny may shout “Ooh I’m Hot!” to outwardly emanate his planetary dominance. In a race of floating spheroids, the Sun should naturally be the gravitational influence that forces other spheres in line and out of 1st place.

On Hard Mode, Computer A.I. ferocity is amplified to be less haphazard and more direct. Of all enemies, Lord Rigor abhors Charlie. Charlie is a lackadaisical floating head that consistently slimed into 1st or 2nd place as Lord Rigor waged platform wars with other A.I.s. In turn, it is with great dissonance to formally condemn Dave Schwalenberg. Listed in Iguana Entertainment's credits upon completion of Iggy's Reckin' Balls, Dave single-handedly crafted the Computer A.I.s. Thank you for the pain, Dave.

Iggy's Reckin' Balls (N64): Hard Mode Difficulty, Iggy's Challenge and Time Trials

Lastly, despite its inherent mimicry of Mario Kart and Diddy Kong Racing, Iggy's Reckin' Balls racing would not be as Challenging without Items. Indeed, the valuable Items are reserved for players in last and there is even an invincible "star" Item. Lord Rigor believe that the Turbo Extension is the most beneficial Item because it replenishes the Turbo Boost gauge. Advantageously, if a player runs over an enemy while boosting, the recipient is momentarily stunned offering the user a double benefit of both speed and intrusion.

Although the Reverse, Ice, or Minimize Items appeared to minimally affect the A.I.s, their utilization against Lord Rigor caused many cliff plummets. Nevertheless, game-play patterns were recognized and strategies were formulated to overcome these racing oddities.

Hard Mode


Inherent Difficulty on Iggy's Reckin' Balls ranges from Easy, Medium and Hard Mode. Exuding tediousness, there are 90 Levels in total to complete across the Racing series which simply retards memorization. In turn, skill in Iggy’s Reckin’ Balls is determined by sheer reaction time and a pure understanding of surroundings as players progress through Worlds.


Best compared to a Mario Kart “Cup,” Iggy’s Reckin’ Balls "Worlds" consists of 10 Levels that require 1, 2 or 3 laps to be completed. Notably, completing a World can take 20 - 30 minutes per attempt. While Racing, players have the option to "Restart Level" mid-World which may be utilized to prevent a loss. Of course, Lord Rigor did not utilize this menu option. Disregarding this option is a monumental test when players feel weak in the knees 15 minutes into a World. Countless Hardships were experienced due to this decision but honor supersedes such common shortcomings.

Iggy's Reckin' Balls (N64): Hard Mode Difficulty, Iggy's Challenge and Time Trials

When Racing, players must obtain a 1st place standing by the conclusion of a World to unlock the subsequent World. Lord Rigor only reached a perfect score of 100 on a few worlds in Hard Mode. Interestingly, unlocking characters requires a perfect 100 points per World; an initiative reserved for Medium Mode inhabitants. To pursue such a feat, an insufferable amount of Level memorization would be required. Lord Rigor only unlocked 4 Characters on Hard Mode.

A few Worlds required Lord Rigor to repeat its races because He did not achieve 1st place upon first attempt. Compounding Level complexity and A.I. brutality contributed to these initial failures. Fortunately, the player is offered three credits to "Continue" the World if placed in 4th place or below in a race.

Iggy's Reckin' Balls (N64): Hard Mode Difficulty, Iggy's Challenge and Time Trials

World X: Iggy's Challenge

Iggy's Challenge is the final World in which each race is the final race (Level 10) from each of the previous Worlds. Like the other Worlds, a secret character may be unlocked if 100 points are obtained. As a final test of endurance, this is the racing Challenge that Iguana Entertainment intended Rigorous players to attempt. Many Game Overs were experienced in this perfection endeavor.


Below is Lord Rigor's triumph:


With a honed energy, Lord Rigor lifted the veil from the secret character: Iggy's girlfriend, LIzzy, whose superb hideousness forced Iggy to hide her away in World 10.


Nevertheless, the deed is done and, upon considering Iguana Entertainment's recommendations, it is indeed Lord Rigor's bedtime.



Time [Trials]

 

Trials are open-form objectives with adjustable Difficulty scales or Collectability Challenges. In Iggy's Reckin' Balls, all 90 Levels across the 10 Worlds are presented with default Par Times to compete against. Each are achievable and worth the commitment. Those Trials are outlined in the below Uniform Resource Locator:


Conclusion

Is this a worthy Challenge? Yes.

Iggy's Reckin' Balls is a gratifyingly eccentric adventure for Difficulty seekers. Yes, the single joystick on the Nintendo 64 controller will batter the thumb and damage the spirit. However, play Iggy's Reckin' Balls sparingly and, in time, fortified calluses will yield victory. For those players not willing to commit to the task, Iguana Entertainment disappointingly granted the utilization of Cheat Codes. Yes, even for unlocking Lizzy in order to avoid Hard Mode.


There is a reason the Cheat Code nomenclature includes the word "Cheat." On a console not connected to the Internet, fragile players that choose such a path dilutes the individual experience. A consistent moral choice afflicts the mind: Instant or Personal Gratification? Lord Rigor leads by example and willingly chooses the later.

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