STORY / GAMEPLAY
In Arkanoid, your planet is invaded by an alien species and you control "Vaus". Vaus is a kind of an oddly designed spacecraft that you use as paddle that prevents any alien ball from falling out of the playing field. The Vaus re-bounces any ball towards a number of colored bricks. When a ball strikes a brick it causes it to break and when all bricks are cleared from the screen, you advance to the next level where another pattern of bricks appears. There is a number of more solid bricks that must be hit multiple times to break (like the metal ones) while there are also unbreakable bricks that can change the ball's direction. In more advanced levels, you will encounter some flying enemy ships and other creatures that can bounce back the ball when hit. You can collect power up capsules to enhance the Vaus in various ways: you can expand its length to cover more space, multiply the number of balls you strike, equip a laser cannon to shoot bricks and enemies, open a direct "portal" to the next level, make a ball to stick on your paddle and more (even make the paddle's length smaller -which is bad). Still the gameplay remains the same. Arkanoid is among the greatest video games in history and so highly accepted that it was released in almost every 8bit/16bit home computer and video game console; it is a really addictive -yet tricky game- that needs some skills to master but it never gets frustrating.
GRAPHICS / SOUND
Technically the MSX port is great and the game here is comparable to the CPC port. The backgrounds themselves are fine: nothing to complain about or to get overly excited about, for that matter. Colors are great while sprites move relatively fast and smooth most of the times, but only when not many sprites occupy the screen (note that the game runs faster on the C64 systems at any time). Each screen offers very bright colors while the background design resembles most of the original (arcades) version! In terms of graphics, this along with the CPC version is probably the best looking 8bit home-computer port I think!
The sound is also good featuring the original memorable short tunes at the beginning of each level, along with some sci-fi SFX.