Dragon’s Travels: Lumines Electronic Symphony
Lumines: Electronic Symphony
Tapping your Foot Whilst Tapping your Vita
A title that released on the launch of the Playstation Vita. I will be discussing whether the game might interest you into buying if you ever decide to obtain one. Does this little launch title still hold up two years after its release? Read on and decide for yourself!
Lumines: Electronic Symphony is a puzzle game that integrates music into its gameplay. Among the many musical tracks it has to offer, it uses just about any movement you make as a musical note that blends in almost perfectly into the song itself. The great part about this is that you don’t even really notice it unless you look for it in itself. The way you move left or right, the placing of any blocks, to matching the color’d segments as it’s wiped away all include their own sound effect that matches the tune that’s really well done. Not only are the sound effects pleasing to the tracks, the songs that play themselves are pleasant to listen to as you plot your next move for the game itself. As you play and replay through the Marathon mode, you’ll find yourself tapping your foot to the songs that play
The visuals shown in the background match the pleasantries of the audio as well. Each musical track also features its own video that plays along as you play though the level. For some tracks however, the visuals almost seem like they’re telling a story as you progress. For some visuals though, the flashing bright lights can be a bit off putting, distracting you as you try to adjust your eyes to how the blocks will look and hamper your attempts at planning your next block placement.
The gameplay itself is quite simple.You are given a single block consisting of any combination of two colors and you must position this block in a way that four segments of one color match into its own separate block. A vertical line that scans through the screen erases the matching blocks, adding to your score and level progression. The aim is to get as many matching blocks per screen for bonus points and attempt to keep the bonus going as the game progresses. For the Voyage mode, you’re given a special ability that you can use every time it becomes 100%; and the way you do that is by either matching the certain amount of blocks, or by tapping your fingers against the Rear-Touch of the Playstation Vita. The tapping can either take away or add difficulty to the various levels as the speed increases the difficulty depending on your ability to multitask. The abilities that you can use allow you special block segments that can either erase (although not adding to your score) certain colored blocks as long as they’re next to another vertically or horizontally. Another can completely randomize what blocks have already been placed, possibly giving you more chances to add to your score.
The game modes seem to be a little bit in lacking however. Besides “Voyage” (which is the marathon mode), There’s only four other things to do between Master, Duel, Stopwatch, and Playlist. Master is just a sped up version with the set goal of a number of blocks you need to obtain, and it progressively becomes harder the further along you continue. Duel is a versus mode which sadly doesn’t exactly include online multiplayer, but instead only includes the option to play against others nearby via Ad Hoc (Anyone who’s close enough for the Vita to connect to). The duel consists of both players trying to obtain a higher score, but now their special abilities have a secondary use of either furthering your own goals, or hampering your opponents. Stopwatch is exactly how it sounds. You have a set amount of time to aqcuire the amount of blocks needed. The time seems to be too short to really obtain anything and the blocks given to you are still random, not allowing you to learn to think as quickly as the game might want you. Finally the Playlist mode, giving you the ability to only play a random set of songs, or a set of your own creation, allowing you to play your favorite tracks whenever you like (once you’ve unlocked them in Voyage mode of course).
The trophies you can mostly unlock as you play through the game thankfully. They consist of just playing for 3 hours within 24 hours of the day, to playing through all of the tracks within Voyage mode, using your Avatar’s special abilities, to just unlocking everything the game has to offer. The only annoying thing about the set that I find is the “Time Stands Still” and “Winner Takes All” trophies. “Time Stands Still” requires you to erase thirty squares in Stopwatch mode within a 30 second time frame which makes it more difficult with the way it chooses to randomize still the blocks needed to erase. The “Winner Takes it All” trophy simply requires you to unlock every skin and avatar within the game which makes the entire thing a bit of a time-sink again for any trophy hunters. It probably wouldn’t be so bad if if wasn’t for Avatars only giving the same two or three special abilities which only makes me wonder why the developers added such an Aesthetic variety when they all for the most part, do the same thing.
+Visuals – Some Visuals are Off-Putting
+Simple Yet Challenging Gameplay – Weird Avatar variety
+Excellent use of Rear-Touch – Lack of Gameplay Options
+Great Audio – No Real Online Multiplayer