I like games... and tattoos. Yes, those.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Tripping the Wave Fantastic

I love Lucky Frame. This might mean that I sound like a fan girl, but so be it. I was completely and utterly smitten with Pugs Luv Beats, and downloaded it for every iDevice I owned at the time. I still return to it occasionally as well, it's just one of those games.

I also enjoyed, although not quite as much, Lucky Frame's next big release, Bad Hotel, which was also excellent it just didn't grab me in the same way as Pugs.

And so when Developer Yann Seznec sent me an email asking if I would like a pre-release copy of Wave Trip, I jumped at the chance. I had seen the trailers and it piqued my interest, but honestly, the trailer does not do this game justice.

Ok, wait, let me take a step back and get this out of the way - watch the trailer.

Right, now that's out of the way, let's get down to the nitty gritty. The trailer is pretty, it makes you think, "Oooo, that looks pretty cool I'd like to maybe play it," but it doesn't make you jump up out of your seat in excitement however. Pretty, catchy, but mostly forgettable.

The actual game however changes this first impression completely. I've included a pre-release screencap video below and even then, you need to play it to fully understand how cool this game is. It's not without its faults but then what is?

Wave Trip is not a game so much as a musical experience. If you've played Pugs Luv Beats you'll know that generally Lucky Frame's modus operandi is to combine music creation with gameplay, and Wave Trip adheres to this in every way.

You play as a triangular... thingy... that is most probably a spaceship, and you exist in a beautiful geometric world. Touch the right hand side of the screen to fly up, the left side of the screen to blast your shield. Collect orange coins to free your trapped friends and blue coins to advance your own score multiplier. It seems pretty standard until of course you realise that every coin you collect adds to the music that is playing in the background, enhancing the beat, and that you can essentially choose which coins to collect to and which barriers to blast to smithereens, in order to add to the musical symphony. The gameplay is challenging enough that you don't feel cheated, but not so hard that you feel infinitely frustrated between levels. It's satisfying and engaging, which is extremely necessary in a game such as this. The right amount of frustration without making you want to throw in the towel.

The controls are simple and intuitive and the music always takes centre stage in this amazing testament to innovative mobile, music creation.

My only real criticism would be the lack of any real story, which while not essential would provide additional motivation to continue through each level. There aren't really many differences between levels apart from a different look and feel, the occasional added enemy, however this is counteracted by the very deep level editor which not only encourages you to make your own levels, but also allows you to play levels that people have uploaded from all over the world. This greatly enhances and extends the play time of this mobile musical experience.

Whilst I might have a couple of gripes, these are things I'd like to see addressed in an update, perhaps extra levels, more enemies, but this still would not deter me from buying this game. If you loved Pugs Luv Beats as much as I did, you'll adore Wave Trip just as much or even more.

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