Relive the award-winning classic that redefined the brick-breaking genre. Shatter returns in stunning 4K resolution running at 120fps, with a modernised UI, and multiple visual improvements. Re-experience the highly acclaimed original soundtrack, remixed and remastered in 5.1 surround sound.

Reviewed on: PlayStation 5
Also available for:
PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch, PC, iOS, Android

Developer: PikPok
Music By:
Publisher: PikPok

Shatter was one of my favourite PSN games for the PS3. It was also one of the earlier digital games I purchased and brought me into the ecosystem of discovering smaller games on the PlayStation Store. Years later, there’s a remaster, and although it doesn’t give me the same revolutionary feeling I had playing Shatter in 2009, it’s still a fantastic brick-breaking experience. 

If you’ve played Pong, or at least understand how Pong works, you can understand the basics of Shatter. You control a paddle and need to bounce a ball or, at times, balls to smash bricks. When the game introduces several other gameplay mechanics, Shatter begins to shape its own image. 

Using the L2 and R2 buttons, you can either suck or blow air from the paddle. This allows you to help keep the ball bouncing around without coming to the paddle or sucking some loose bricks towards you. You have to be careful, as if any loose bricks hit your paddle, it’ll bounce unconscious for a moment, and you won’t be able to control it. 

Different brick types will drop power-ups or require specifics to break. Some of the power-ups will smash through bricks that would need 2-3 hits of a standard ball to break, and another ball is easily guidable with your air ability. As you progress through the 70-odd levels in the ‘campaign’, you’ll be introduced to red blobs that create more bricks unless dealt with quickly, connector bricks that, if broken, will drop a bunch of ant-gravity bricks on you and more. Knowing where to aim your bricks and having a game plan instead of mindlessly smashing bricks is another thing that makes Shatter stand out from your typical brick-break game. You’ll also have some levels through a spanner in your plan as they switch the level’s geometry, from your standard side-on brick-breaking design to a space-invaders design or even a half-circle one. The game does a lot to make sure each level feels different in some way, and you’re never going to feel like the game is repetitive or boring, which is easier said than done with a brick-breaking game.

The boss battles were always the most memorable part of Shatter for me. And re-playing them in Shatter Remastered Deluxe is no different. Each has a distinct design that slowly becomes more complicated and requires using different Shatter mechanics to defeat. One boss battle, for example, requires you to suck or blow a shield out of the way so you can bounce a ball into the boss’ weak point and damage it.

Everything has been remastered in Shatter Remastered Deluxe to provide a beautiful-looking brick-breaking game. Though it’s only once you compare the PS3 and the PS5 version you’ll truly appreciate how much better the new game looks. It also sounds fantastic, with a remastered and recognisable soundtrack providing the backing to the levels and boss fights. There are many modes here, too, from time-attack boss rushes to an infinite mode and score attack for those looking for a little extra challenge. If you want to chase higher scores in the campaign, you can spend hours attempting to beat it without using any continues. 

Shatter Remastered Deluxe is an excellent brick-breaking game. Considering its over ten years old, it is a testament to how good the core gameplay is that a simple visual and audio makeover could make it feel fresh again. If you’re a fan of the genre, it’s a must-play, especially if you never got a chance to experience it on PS3.