Spin the Black Circle

Section: 

"This game is very hard." So says developer Andrew Guillen at the outset of Spin the Black Circle. He's right.

It's no more complicated than a hand-held marble maze. Simply spin each level with left and right arrow keys in order to pilot a ball into a hole. The early levels, which introduce the ball's physics and some basic maneuvers, are boot camp. The real game begins at Level 10.

Spin the Black Circle rewards patience and careful attention. You can't brute force your way around its mazes. You have to finesse the ball home. The more trial-and-error attempts you make, the deeper you're drawn into the physics simulation, and the better you'll get. It's surprisingly rewarding. By the time I completed Level 12 (there are 24 in total), I'd reached an almost trancelike state of concentration. And I'd accomplished something that at first seemed impossible.

Thanks to Al for suggesting Spin the Black Circle. If you'd like to recommend a free browser-based game for Act Casual, use our Contact Form to send us a link and brief description.

Comments

Cute, difficult game. I made it to the level with the

[color=white]large spinning wheel[/color]

Might have to try and beat it later though. It's taunting me, saying it's all hard and stuff.

I gave this a shot about six months ago and fell apart somewhere around the late teens in an apoplectic fury. This infernal game demands the tenacity of a watchmaker.

I can't help feeling it would make a brilliant iphone game, although playing on public transport could lead to homicide.

I would hardly call this game casual unless you think self-flagellation is a relaxing past-time. Apparently I tried it some time ago since I could skip to level 11 where I promptly gave up in disgust after two tries. My main problem with games like this is that they're not difficult in a clever way that requires thought to achieve victory but instead require ridiculous feats of manual dexterity that can only be achieved by continuous practice in order to attain the required muscle memory. I don't want to have to practice to beat a "casual" Flash game.

Latrine wrote:

My main problem with games like this is that they're not difficult in a clever way that requires thought to achieve victory but instead require ridiculous feats of manual dexterity that can only be achieved by continuous practice in order to attain the required muscle memory. I don't want to have to practice to beat a casual Flash game.

Though they do require a fair amount of manual dexterity, I found it a little bit more cerebral. I made it past 11 and 12 by discovering new ways to manage momentum and gravity, and carefully refining those strategies through trial-and-error. It's still very tough. And aggravating. Each level is a project.

Amazing video walkthrough here.

The Fly wrote:
Latrine wrote:

My main problem with games like this is that they're not difficult in a clever way that requires thought to achieve victory but instead require ridiculous feats of manual dexterity that can only be achieved by continuous practice in order to attain the required muscle memory. I don't want to have to practice to beat a casual Flash game.

Though they do require a fair amount of manual dexterity, I found it a little bit more cerebral. I made it past 11 and 12 by discovering new ways to manage momentum and gravity, and carefully refining those strategies through trial-and-error. It's still very tough. And aggravating. Each level is a project.

Amazing video walkthrough here.

I might just give up and watch the walkthrough instead. The fact that you had to "discover new ways to manage momentum and gravity," Fly, suggests that you're much better at this than I am. I'm still discovering new ways to manage anger and coffee. Neither of which is helping me past 11.

Dear lord the level in the picture is giving me fits. The end of it is soooooooo tough.

Great little game.

Nyles wrote:

I'm still discovering new ways to manage anger and coffee.

I think we should found a research center for this.

When I finally gave up, I went and looked at the walkthrough, only to find out I was one level away from completion.

On level 23 right now. I will finish this game!

Has anyone else noted the sidebar while playing? In the "Latest Ratings", I'm seeing:

-One on One
-Japanese women slapping each other in the face
-Swoop To Nuts

I'm on 12 so far

I got to the level I lovingly call "Spiral of Doom". I got really close to beating it several times, but always managed to blow it at the end.

A lot more frustrating than fun. I'm still stuck on level 11 and I don't plan to devote my life to trying to complete it.

Didn't even finish the tutorial. Dirty ball is clearly too good for its home.

Awesome little game, got to the same spinning circle level. The level before it is pretty ingenious.

Any tips for getting through level 12? I've been stuck for hours on this mofo.

EDIT: Am of course I beat it two minutes after that post. I got lucky.

I played the first level, then the second level frustrated me. Then,

Tkyl wrote:

Has anyone else noted the sidebar while playing? In the "Latest Ratings", I'm seeing:

-One on One
-Japanese women slapping each other in the face
-Swoop To Nuts

Then I found this. And I was complete. Seriously, it is real. Really crazy.

I noticed that too. But surprisngly, the slapping game is a little more involved than I had hoped it would be. I wanted a buttom-mashing smack fest.

An interesting game(Spin the Black Circle), but when you get slammed with a level that's essentially you tossing your ball into a cavern entirely surrounded by spikes, with the expectation that you can clear it with the use of gravity... no, I will not.

Soooo close on level 17. So close so many times. I hate this game. I love this game.

I've learned more from this game than from Braid.

FenixStryk wrote:

An interesting game(Spin the Black Circle), but when you get slammed with a level that's essentially you tossing your ball into a cavern entirely surrounded by spikes, with the expectation that you can clear it with the use of gravity... no, I will not.

I found that to be one of the easier levels. You just need to roll the ball off the thin edge and turn quickly to angle it inward toward the exit. Takes a few tries to get the timing down but it's not too bad.

I'm stuck on 21 right now. Can't get the timing down on the double jumps.

EDIT: I'm banging my head against the desk trying to get past 21. I wish I never played this evil f'n game!

I just really didn't enjoy this game. Punishing difficulty isn't my thing. I made it to level 13, that's enough for me.

There's no advantage to completing it, you know. It's a purely narcissistic endeavour.