History and Versions
Klax is a stacking-type puzzle game originally released in 1989. The game was designed by Dave Akers and Mark Pierce. The game was programmed by Akers using AmigaBASIC and then ported to C. From here the game was ported to the arcade by Atari where it became more well-known.
Klax has been ported to the arcade, Amiga, Amstrad CPC, Atari 2600, Atari 5200, Atari 7800, Atari Lynix, Atari ST, BBC Micro, Commodore 64, DOS, Gameboy, Gameboy Advance, Gameboy Color, MSX, Nintendo Gamecube, Nintendo Entertainment System, Playstation Portable, SAM Coupé, Sega Game Gear, Sega Genesis, Sega Master System, Sharp X68000, Sony Playstaion, TurboGrafx-16, X-Box, and ZX Spectrum. An excellent video that shows all the different official versions of Klax can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4CL2RgBNLg
Klax is played on a single screen with a board stretching into the background at an upward angle. Tiles fall down this board, which usually resembles a conveyor belt in most versions. The board is five tiles wide and tiles will move down it on all five spots.
Below the board is the main playing area. Players control a small catcher positioned above the playing area. As the tiles move down the board, the player can move this catcher back and forth to catch the tiles. Once a tile is caught, the player can move the catcher over one of the desired rows and lower the tile down below. The catcher can hold up to five tiles at a time and will always lower the topmost tile first.
Missing a tile is considered a "drop" and counts against your drop total. Depending on what bonus point option was chosen before beginning a round, the player is allowed between three and six drops before a game over. The allowed number of drops is reset every five stages. Stages are advanced by meeting the a certain threshold of tasks set at the beginning of each stage (see Stage Goals below for more information). Reaching stage one hundred will end the game.
The playing field itself is five tiles by five tiles, allowing for up to twenty-five tiles to be placed in it. If the playing field is filled up completely this will result in a game over. The goal of the player is to create "klax" by aligning three tiles of the same color (or same design pattern on the black-and-white ports such as on the Gameboy) vertically, horizontally, or diagonally, as demonstrated below:
The leftmost column of green tiles would be a vertical klax, while the row of red tiles along the bottom of the plating field would be a horizontal klax. A diagonal klax could be constructed as follows:
Creating more than one klax at a time counts as multiple klax. For example, this would award you points for both a vertical and a horizontal klax:
The leftmost column counts a vertical klax with the green tiles, while the third row counts as a horizontal klax. Creating a klax of four tiles counts as two klax, while creating a klax of five tiles counts as three klax. The major exception to this is creating a "X" across the playing field like this:
This would create two diagnol klax from red tiles meeting at the center, but by making a "X" like this the player is awarded a massive amount of bonus points.
Scoring between the various versions seems to be fairly universal. I have done cursory play on most of the versions I could find and have not really noticed any difference between them on this front other than the Gameboy version which awards no points for catching a tile and awards points at a tenth of what they are in the arcade. For example, a klax is worth five points instead of fifty. If anyone reading this has observed a different method of scoring on one of these versions, please drop me a line and I will update this guide to reflect that.
Catching a tile is worth five points. A vertical klax is worth fifty points. A horizontal klax is worth one thousand points. A diagonol klax is worth five thousand points. If you create a "X" klax you will received five-hundred thousand points.
Some other things to note. Creating a four tile klax counts as two klax, while creating a five tile klax counts as three klax. This is reflected in scoring as well. Creating a combination, whereby when tiles vanish upon being matched causes another klax to be formed, will double the score of both the first and the second klax. Likewise if you create another combination klax from the second one then the score multiplier will be triple for all three klax; that is, the score received for each klax will be multiplied by three.
At the end of the stage bonus points are awarded in a few ways. You receive twenty-five points for each tile on the board or on the catcher when the round ends. You also receive two hundred points for each space in the playing field that is not occupied by a tile. Lastly, if you had chosen to skip to higher difficulty stage sets initially you will receive the bonus listed when you complete a stage set (either one-hundred thousand or two-hundred thousand points depending on which difficulty was chosen).
As with scoring, the stage goals seem consistent between the different versions, excepting again that the Gameboy version asks for a tenth of the points for stages requiring a point threshold. If I am mistaken in this for a particular version of the game, please drop me a line and I will update this guide to reflect that.
|01||3 Klax||26||30 Klax||51||30 Klax||76||22 Klax|
|02||5 Klax||27||13 Diagonol Klax||52||13 Diagonol Klax||77||6 Diagonol Klax|
|03||3 Diagonol Klax||28||Lower 80 Tiles||53||Lower 90 Tiles||78||Lower 100 Tiles|
|04||10,000 Points||29||35,000 Points||54||60,000 Points||79||80,000 Points|
|05||Lower 40 Tiles||30||15 Horizontal Klax||55||18 Horizontal Klax||80||20 Horizontal Klax|
|06||10 Klax||31||30 Klax||56||30 Klax||81||40 Klax|
|07||6 Diagonol Klax||32||13 Diagonol Klax||57||15 Diagonol Klax||82||20 Diagonol Klax|
|08||Lower 55 Tiles||33||Lower 80 Tiles||58||Lower 90 Tiles||83||Lower 100 Tiles|
|09||25,000 Points||34||40,000 Points||59||60,000 Points||84||100,000 Points|
|10||5 Horizontal Klax||35||5 Horizontal Klax||60||18 Horizontal Klax||85||5 Horizontal Klax|
|11||15 Klax||36||30 Klax||61||30 Klax||86||30 Klax|
|12||13 Diagonol Klax||37||13 Diagonol Klax||62||15 Diagonol Klax||87||20 Diagonol Klax|
|13||Lower 75 Tiles||38||Lower 90 Tiles||63||Lower 90 Tiles||88||Lower 100 Tiles|
|14||25,000 Points||39||40,000 Points||64||70,000 Points||89||100,000 Points|
|15||10 Horizontal Klax||40||15 Horizontal Klax||65||13 Horizontal Klax||90||20 Horizontal Klax|
|16||15 Klax||41||35 Klax||66||30 Klax||91||25 Klax|
|17||13 Diagonol Klax||42||13 Diagonol Klax||67||15 Diagonol Klax||92||13 Diagonol Klax|
|18||Lower 75 Tiles||43||Lower 90 Tiles||68||Lower 100 Tiles||93||Lower 100 Tiles|
|19||30,000 Points||44||50,000 Points||69||70,000 Points||94||70,000 Points|
|20||13 Horizontal Klax||45||15 Horizontal Klax||70||15 Horizontal Klax||95||15 Horizontal Klax|
|21||20 Klax||46||35 Klax||71||35 Klax||96||30 Klax|
|22||13 Diagonol Klax||47||13 Diagonol Klax||72||13 Diagonol Klax||97||6 Diagonol Klax|
|23||Lower 65 Tiles||48||Lower 90 Tiles||73||Lower 100 Tiles||98||Lower 50 Tiles|
|24||35,000 Points||49||55,000 Points||74||75,000 Points||99||6 Horizontal Tiles|
|25||13 Horizontal Klax||50||18 Horizontal Klax||75||15 Horizontal Klax||100||250,000 Points|
Klax is (c) Atari/Midway