Screenshot of the Arkanoid arcade game
Developed by Taito in 1986, Arkanoid is a simple yet addictive video game. Based upon Atari's Breakout games of the early '80s, the player controls a small pad that has to keep a ball from falling from the playing field, bouncing it against a number of bricks. Each time a ball hits a brick, it disappears. When all the bricks are done, the player goes to the next level, where another pattern of bricks appear. There are other variations (bricks that have to be hit a number of times, flying ships, etc.) and power-ups (enlarge your pad, multiply the number of balls, go directly to the next level) but mainly its bricks-ball-pad stuff. After 30 or so levels, a player will take on the game's unusually named boss, Doh.
Three versions of the game were developed for the coin-op market, the original game, Doh's Revenge (Arkanoid II) in 1987 and Arkanoid Returns in 1994. Many of the 8-bit computer ports (ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC 464, Commodore 64) were very popular in Europe in the 1980s. Console ports on the NES and Game Boy were also popular. The most recent Arkanoid game was a Super NES port called Arkanoid: Doh It Again in 1997. It has remained a popular game and is commonly cloned by aspiring game developers in freeware and shareware titles. Many companies have also regularly cloned the game in arcades.
Arkanoid's popularity led to it being featured in Rainbow Islands, which has a whole level (4 stages in all) dedicated to the game, including Doh as the level boss.