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Amazingu Feb 19, 2012

Started playing Theathrythm recently (after having to go through some trouble to find a copy, it's sold out at a lot of places) and I'm absolutely loving it!

I'm not much of a rhythm game fan, since I tend to suck at them, but Theathrythm is absolute bliss. It helps, of course, that I know all the music and that it's just plain damn fun to tap along with the music I've known and loved for so many years (seriously, why are there not more music games with actual game music!?).

At first, only Basic Level difficulty is available, which no one really should have trouble with, but afterwards, Normal Difficulty becomes available, which is a lot more hectic, and has just the right amount of challenge.
And then there's the 3rd difficulty which is absolutely CRAZY, but feels OH SO GOOD if you manage to get through a song unscathed.

The RPG element is surprisingly fun too, with stages not only having a length determined by the duration of the song, but also having a "physical" length, in which progress is determined by how strong your party is. A weak party will not get very far by the end of the song, but a strong party might end up at a boss which, upon defeat, may drop cool items and collectibles. It's a very fun and interesting system, greatly increasing the replay value of songs.

The streetpass function is used to exchange profiles, but each profile comes with a musical "score", which is basically a randomized piece of two songs from the game at random difficulties, with random monsters and bosses thrown in which, of course, will randomly drop loot. The game touts this system as offering "virtually endless possibilities" and it's definitely something to bring you back after you've worked through the Story Mode.

Did I mention that?
Yes, there's a Story Mode. Basically each FF gets 5 songs taken from that game: The opening, an event scene, a battle scene, a field scene and the ending. The opening and ending aren't that interesting from a gameplay point of view, since they're only for bonus purposes and there is no fail state, so it's fortunate that they can be skipped (a wise choice, since the opening is the same song for many FFs: the Prelude, obviously).
The battle and field scenes are the main meat of the game, and they're where you can earn the previously mentioned items and loot. Progress in battles depends on the strength of your characters, while field scenes depend on speed and a bit of luck. Your stats obviously don't influence your performance in the song, but it's nice to see your performance in the songs be translated into collectible items.

As far as the music collection goes, you'll get most of what you expect and a couple of less expected ones. Each game uses the music from that actual game (so no remixes), but the various menus all have nice arrangements of familiar FF tunes.

This may very well be the best music game I've every played in my entire life.

jb Feb 19, 2012

This is like the only game I'm excited about playing in this entire fiscal year.  I want it... so bad... I can't imagine it NOT getting a US release but I haven't heard of one yet.  I was going to go so far as to import a Japanese DS and the game but I really think that's not a smart idea since it would be quite the challenge to download DLC.

TerraEpon Feb 19, 2012 (edited Feb 19, 2012)

I'm very potentially interested in this game (it might be my first 3DS game despite having the system since the price drop), but I'm a bit annoyed at reading how much DLC will be. Modern gaming....sigh.
(Of course this is conducive on the game getting a US release. IIRC 3ds games are region locked so importing won't be an option...though there's that other potential option...)

the_miker Feb 19, 2012

TerraEpon wrote:

though there's that other potential option...

If this game doesn't get released over here, that's exactly my plan.  Too bad that "option" isn't available yet.  Region locking is so dumb.

But yes, really looking forward to this game.  My favorite DS games were the Ouendan/EBA trilogy so it's only natural that I'll love this.  Rhythm Thief too, which comes out next month.. I think?

XLord007 Feb 19, 2012

I'm interested in the game, but 3DS doesn't seem like the appropriate platform to me.  I'll wait for the inevitable iOS port.

Amazingu Feb 19, 2012

XLord007 wrote:

I'm interested in the game, but 3DS doesn't seem like the appropriate platform to me.  I'll wait for the inevitable iOS port.

Why?

Any system with a touch screen will do.

The 3D is utterly superfluous though.
I generally like the 3D effect in 3DS games, even if it's only a visual gimmick, but even by those standards, the 3D in Theathrythm isn't really worth turning up the slide for.
It's the first game I've owned on the system where I keep the slider permanently down.

As for the DLC thing, yeah, as much as I love the game, I'm not going to jump on that.

XLord007 Feb 22, 2012

Amazingu wrote:
XLord007 wrote:

I'm interested in the game, but 3DS doesn't seem like the appropriate platform to me.  I'll wait for the inevitable iOS port.

Why?

Any system with a touch screen will do.

I would rather have the screen I'm touching be the same screen that I'm looking at.  It seems weird that you're manipulating the stylus on the touch screen while watching the top screen.  I wasn't too keen on DS games that required this, so that's why.

Amazingu Feb 22, 2012

XLord007 wrote:

I would rather have the screen I'm touching be the same screen that I'm looking at.  It seems weird that you're manipulating the stylus on the touch screen while watching the top screen.  I wasn't too keen on DS games that required this, so that's why.

All right, that's a fair enough reason wink

I wonder if this game will be ported to any other consoles.
The 3D is totally useless (and doesn't even look good) anyway, so it might as well be on iPhone or Vita.

Jay Jul 21, 2012

I mentioned this in the general gaming thread but thought it deserved a little more, what with it being a game entirely based around VGM and from a series that got many of us into VGM in the first place (FFVII was the first VGM album I actually bought rather than just trying to record game audio).

So most of you must know how it works. It's a 3DS rhythm game celebrating the FF anniversary. You play through each game from the first FF all the way to XIII, with three main tracks per game (though also giving the intro and end themes).

The stages are divided into field stages, where you get a nice field theme and just go for a walk tapping and holding the rhythm, battle stages, where you battle enemies in much the same way, and event stages which offer movies of important moments from the games - obviously that offers much more for the later games. You manage a party of characters and can equip them with abilities and items which will help you survive or beat bosses to get better goodies.

Beyond the main game sections, there is a challenge mode where you can pick individual tracks to play. There's a chaos shrine mode which offers a greater challenge and different combinations of tracks where you can pick up items for unlockables (such as shards, which unlock more characters). There's also a museum with music player, movie player and
a card collection.

On top of the three music tracks per game, there are encore tracks to unlock and DLC tracks on offer. So far, I've bought all available tracks and there are some real treats among them.

The game itself is pretty simple and it works on a very basic level initially - it gives you something to do while listening to great FF tracks. But it's actually really good fun and as the challenge increases the game gets more interesting and the abilities begin to matter more.

Overall, it's a really good celebration of Final Fantasy music. Sure, there are tracks I would have chosen over some of the ones here but no track list would please everyone. It has really taken me back and reminded me how much I loved some of the music in these games. A real nostalgia trip. And yet I never played XII or XIII and enjoy those stages so nostalgia is not all it has to offer.

One notable omission is FFXIV. That game fell well within the anniversary period and not a hint of it here. It's like it doesn't exist. I guess XIV hasn't gone well for them but it was a return for Uematsu so I would have thought a celebration of FF music should include it.

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