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qomp2 Review: A Fiendish Sequel to Pong

qomp2
Image: Atari

Out today on consoles and PC, qomp2 is inexplicably a sequel to Pong. As you can guess by the name, it’s not the first, either. Though the original qomp, unlike this sequel, only released on PC.

In any case, it finds the little Pong square getting fed up of being hit back and forth and, evolving into an actual ball that can turn blue and unleash a burst of speed, trying to escape from its confines. A shame that all that awaits it is a labyrinth of spikes and other dastardly traps.

Like other reimaginings of classic games by Atari, qomp2 features a minimalist but striking art style, and marries it with old-fashioned gameplay with a twist.

Here, you’re to guide the brave Pong ball through 30 perilous levels, with only two buttons to perform actions. Basically, you can change your angle as you move forward by 45 degrees, and charge up your ball, turning it blue and gaining a burst of speed upon releasing your pent-up energy. That’s about it.

qomp2
Image: Atari

In keeping with the rules of Pong, progressing in qomp2 is all about angles. You need to consider how you’re going to bounce off walls and other objects in order to reach your goal. But making that all the more tricky is a range of obstacles, some of which will destroy your ball on contact, sending you back to a checkpoint.

There are some objects you can interact with providing you’re blue, as well. Some blocks can only be moved by hitting them with a burst of speed while you’re blue, for example, while swirls of blue energy will pull you in if you’re also blue, allowing you to shoot yourself out in one of two directions.

Needless to say, as the levels progress, things get more and more difficult. Timing becomes ever more important, and added complexity comes into play, with you needing to collect keys to unlock door and allsorts. With its limited controls, that can be very frustrating at times, many players might simply give up before they’ve even made a considerable dent in qomp2.

It can be absolutely mind-boggling trying to get your head around the movement of the ball, and should you find it taking you back to an area you just come from, you’re likely to blow your top.

Those who do get their heads around it, though, and like a challenge, will likely find its 30 levels keeping them entertained for some time. For added longevity, there are collectibles to be found in each level too, though doing so will truly be a test of one’s skill and patience.

In any case, qomp2 isn’t a game for everyone. While it may be a sequel to Pong, it lacks the raw simplicity of the original. And while some may fall in love with its strange premise and unique gameplay, others are likely to simply see it as a source of frustration.


qomp2 Review – GameSpew’s Score

GameSpew Our Score 6
This review of qomp2 is based on the PS5 version of the game, with a code provided by the publisher. It’s available on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Switch and PC.
Editor in Chief // An avid gamer since discovering the wonders of the Acorn Electron in the '80s, Rich has nearly played more games than he's had hot dinners. Not one to put all his eggs in one basket, Rich is happy to play games of all genres, but he particularly enjoys racing games and anything that's full of non-stop action, especially if it includes a good dose of humour, horror or crudeness!