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... Competition Jezzball for the Internet



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Instructions - Object of the Game

The object of the game is very simple: clear as much of each level as possible. The more you clear, the more points you get. Playing on the fast setting will get you twice as many points for the same area cleared.

To clear area, you need to to draw lines without the balls bumping into the lines while they're being drawn. If a ball bumps your line before it has completed drawing, you lose a line and a life. The drawing completes when the line reaches the wall.

The draw direction for your lines is shown by the arrows at the bottom of the game board, and you can change the draw direction by clicking the button to the left of the arrows or by right-clicking your mouse anywhere on the game board.

If your line finishes drawing without being hit by a ball, it will either close off an area (clear the area) if there are no other balls in that region, or it will divide that area off, leaving balls within it bouncing around in the smaller space. Although the main thing you want to do is clear area, it can be useful to trap balls in small areas so you have fewer of the little guys to contend with when trying to draw lines.

Here both ends of the line will successfully finish drawing because the balls are far away and will not bump into the lines before the drawing completes. The resultant line will turn blue and will divide the playing field in two.

You also get some bonus points for lives remaining at the end of a level, and a smaller bonus for time remaining.

But the real juice comes from the area bonuses. The area bonuses are what can really propel you up the high scores lists. The trick is this: the level is over when 75% is cleared, but bonuses don't kick in for less than 80% cleared. So you need to plan things so that your last "draw" takes you from 75% to 95% or better, if you can arrange it. It's up to you to develop the strategies for doing this, but here's one little hint: "pipes". Some links are provided below to pages by other folks which demonstrate some of the more subtle strategies.

Finally, although the different ball colors don't mean anything, you may occasionally notice that one ball starts flashing a sort of magenta color. This is the "bolaloca" or "crazy ball". If you should manage to completely trap that ball, that is fully immobilize it in a teeny little square where it can't move at all, you will get a huge bonus. However, there's risk involved and you may lose lives trying to trap it. It's your call-- do you go for it or not?
Here the board has been divided and a portion "cleared". The solid blue area in the middle is the cleared area. Another line is being drawn, with one end of the line already completed and anchored to the wall (and therefore shown in blue) while the other end of the line is about to touch the wall and complete. When it touches, the area below the line will be "cleared" and will turn blue, leaving the two balls above bouncing around in a much smaller area.

A few other little tips:

  • You will notice you can also change the draw direction by right clicking your mouse.
  • The game will play more smoothly if you make sure the Java JIT is turned on in Internet Explorer's advanced settings.
  • I have had screen draw problems with Netscape 4.x on NT and I don't know what's up with that. Same code runs fine on all other platforms I've tested or heard reports from.

You can also find some great tips at www.jezzball.com and at the nifty BolaLoca-specific jafosei's BolaLoca strategy page and mshieh's BolaLoca trap setting tip page.


High Scores

Two sets of high scores are maintained: the daily scores and the all time high scores. The daily scores are cleared nightly at midnite Eastern U.S. time. The all time high scores will of course last for eternity.

Note that you only get one entry on each list. This prevents the more heavily addicted players from cluttering up the scores lists with their many repeated high scores.

You can also play offline as Anonymous. You'll need to be connected to the Internet to start the game, but then you can close your 'net connection, leaving your browser open to Jezzball.net/BolaLoca.com and continue to play. Sorry-- can't save scores that way though due to valid security restrictions built into the Java language used for the game.