Action 1991 Dos id Software, Inc. Platformer

Bouncy bouncy!

Paragon is a little known but very clever and enjoyable little puzzle game which is perfect for fans of Spindizzy and Marble Madness. It combines a simple concept with elegantly designed levels and some cunning puzzles to great effect, meaning it's a game that you can easily lose yourself in for some time. Like the best such games, the idea here is simple enough, with no pretensions to adding unwanted narrative, and you find yourself in control of a little bouncing ball. Your goal is to explore a series of levels, collecting treasures to rack up the points while avoiding the many obstacles which get in your way. You don't move freely and instead your ball follows a series of wires placed around each level until you choose to jump off and bounce around the walls before hooking back on. Each level has a certain number of bonuses and numbers which must be collected before the next one opens up while hazards include laser beams and zombie balls. You can only take a certain amount of hits before it's game over and you have to start again. Paragon might not be the greatest puzzle game ever but it's surprisingly enjoyable and makes use of some inventive mechanics to help it stand out a little. The controls are easy enough to grasp but getting your timing right to make your bounces count takes some effort, although it's never frustrating. The visuals aren't going to set the world alight but puzzle games don't really need flashy graphics and instead you can just concentrate on the well-designed levels. An addictive little game that is worth a look for puzzle fans.

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