Monday, January 7, 2013

My First Voyage In Lumines: Electronic Symphony Took An Hour And A Half

And not just my first one, either. Pretty much all of them so far have been lasting about 80 to 90 minutes with a couple notable exceptions where I was throwing blocks down like a madman, flying too close to the sun and melting my wings.

I'll tell you, this game is every bit as good as I was hoping and better, and here's why: the soundtrack is impeccable. It is perfect. So far, there is not a single song that I dislike, and in a puzzle game like this that bases itself around music, that is absolutely key. That is precisely why I just couldn't get into Lumines Supernova, no matter how hard I tried. There were just too many songs that I couldn't stand.

One of my friends got Electronic Symphony months ago when he bought his Vita and that got me back into Supernova for a bit, but I couldn't get past the awful soundtrack. He walked in while I was in the middle of one of the most annoying songs and said, "Yeah, I can see why I never saw you playing this before."

So an hour and a half play session of Electronic Symphony is totally welcome. James Mielke, the game's producer, did an awesome job curating the soundtrack; when your game opens with "The Future of the Future," you know you're doing something right. I even tracked down a fan-made compilation of all the songs and that's all I've been listening to for the last few days.

It's also just a fantastic showcase for the Vita as a system. Something I still haven't gotten over in Rayman: Origins or here in Electronic Symphony is how unbelievably beautiful the Vita's screen is. The high pixel density makes all edges look incredibly smooth, and the OLED screen makes bright colors pop so vividly.

The ability to take screenshots of your game at any time by simultaneously tapping the PlayStation and start buttons is great, especially in a game like Lumines because I can take a picture of a big combo or a high score in-progress and send it to a friend in the middle of a game without having to quit. That screenshot above is actually from my first game. I can finally take my own screenshots of games instead of having to scour the Internet to find the right one because I don't own a capture kit. I just wish the screenshots didn't look so compressed because they don't do justice to the games at all.

But so far, I'm having a blast in Electronic Symphony. I get that the Vita doesn't have a ton of games for it yet, but there are some seriously amazing games on there already.


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