Summary: So, what makes a good videogame? After playing Sound Shapes I'm less inclined to say that engaging mechanics need be part of the equation. Play isn’t an act of joy in itself, but a means to a musical end.
Pros: Sublime mix of visuals and audio, Impeccable presentation, Streamlined level editor
Conclusion: Once again, despite Roger Ebert, a game finds a way to blend art and gameplay together in a fun and accessible way. Sound Shapes isn't really like anything else, and that's a shame because more games could stand to experiment like this.
Excerpt: The Vita is an extraordinarily frustrating console. The tech is there. The design is there. Everything is in place for Sony's expensive little beauty to soar into the handheld gaming stratosphere. And yet, with the world at its feet, there is nothing to play.
Conclusion: Sound Shapes boasts an effortless dedication to intoxicating the player's senses through its sights and sounds. Call it distilled bliss or displaced affection, but there's an explicit sense of euphoria acquired by absorbing Sound Shapes' rich presentation.
Conclusion: The trickiest part of this simple scheme to master is the sprint ability. By holding a button, you move faster, and this is necessary to clear certain jumps or avoid patrolling enemies. But you can't grab onto a surface when you're running.
Pros: Incredible and diverse soundtrack, Clever and varied platforming challenges, Striking visual design, In-depth level editor and easy sharing tools, Beat School and Death Mode push your understanding of level design.
Summary: Music envelops you like a warm blanket. The rapid tap of a snare drum provides the delicate rhythm, while an ethereal harp exudes a peaceful melody. Songs spring forth unabated, sprouting organically in the environment from the beaks of chirping birds, the engines of zooming missiles, and every...
Pros: Incredible and diverse soundtrack, Clever and varied platforming challenges, Striking visual design, In-depth level editor and easy sharing tools, Beat School and Death Mode push your understanding of level design
Conclusion: The Short Version: Sound Shapes is fantastically engrossing, utterly captivating experience that brings music and platforming together in a beautiful synthesis. But by putting the tools of creation in players' hands it goes beyond simply being a pleasant curio and becomes an inexpensive mine of...
Pros: Makes fantastic use of the Vita's strengths, particularly when it comes to creation, Play. Create. Share. makes for endless replayability, Simple, yet utterly absorbing premise
Cons: Level editor icons could do with in-menu explanations, Rear trackpad controls can sometimes be a little fiddly, There are only three Beck levels
Summary: Sound Shapes is a decent game with stylish graphics and music, and I think the very funky musical experience of playing its campaign just about warrants its £10 asking price. People who play or create a lot of user created levels will find far better value here, though, and how well that user...