Review by anuj
"Lumines: An Experience"
I bought my shiny new PSP on March 24th. Along with it, I purchased a game called "Lumines". I'm still not exactly sure how to PRONOUNCE the name, but I do know that I've found the reason I will not be going pre-med. I was skeptical when I first bought the game. The boastings on the back of the box gave it some hype to live up to. I slipped in the UMD, and wass impressed the second I started playing Challenge Mode.
Oh. My. Gawd. I was expecting some sort of Tetris knockoff, but I was pleasantly surprised. The game itself is deceptively simple. Two colors, four blocks. All you have to do? Arrange four same-colored blocks in a square. Sound simple? Sure, it does. But much like any puzzle game, you'll find yourself trapped if you make one or two inopportune moves. The difference between other puzzle games and Lumines is the presentation of each "skin", which consists of an animated background, different block colors, and a new audio track. Each skin is very well done, and is accompanied by complementing colors and audio. Overall, the gameplay infused with the stylish presentation of the UI and games themselves is amazing. There are several different modes of play, including Challenge Mode, Single Skin Mode, VS, and Puzzle Mode.
The UI is simple, stylish, and easy to navigate.
Giving Lumines anything less than a 10/10 is Gameplay/Presentation is a crime.
There are two things that set Lumines apart from other puzzle games. The graphics, and the audio. The gameplay infuses trance/nightclub beats and brings a completely unique and engrossing rhythm to the game. I found myself nodding my head in time with the game. It was amazing. The strangest thing about the audio? I hate trance music. I hate nightclub music. And I definitely hate techno. But the way that the devs use audio so WELL in Lumines make it more than a good choice. There are dozens of skins, and each track is strangely encompassing.
It's a puzzle game. There aren't any level bosses, and you're not going to get some sort of special animated CG ending. But the simplicity of the game, combined with the pure fun of the gameplay is sure to result in many long hours logged into the game. I've had my copy for less than 48 hours and have logged 7 hours of gameplay. It's just amazing how engrossing such a simple game can be.
Replay Factor: 10/10
I hate using such a cliched term, but there are times when you can't discuss a game in just one aspect of it. Back in November, some random Gamestop employee called Halo 2 an experience. He lied, but I kid you not. This game is the closest thing to a release game that completely engrosses you in it. The audio, visual, and gameplay simply weave together to form something that transcends a simple puzzle. As other Lumi-heads have mentioned, the game is like trying to concentrate while someone is begging you to dance in a nightclub. Sad thing is, I actually took my PSP/Lumines out clubbing last night.
X-Factor: Completely amazing experience.
Overall (This is NOT an average, but it might as well be):
I'm not sure how it's possible for me to give this game something less than a ten out of ten without looking like a complete and utter idiot.
11/10. If you have a PSP, and don't play this, you're doing an injustice to yourself.
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 03/28/05
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