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A Luminous Experience

posted on October 26th, 2006 by matt

As of now, my job as a QA tester is becoming dreadfully boring. They don’t have any games for me to test anymore, gosh darn it! This has lead me to pull out the ol’ PSP and get some Lumines sessions going.

I bought this game when I first got my PSP over a year ago, and it’s still one of the system’s best games. Tetsuya Mizuguchi is a true pioneer in what I like to call “audio games.” He puts far more time and effort into the audio presentation than anything else in his games. Go back and play Rez and you’ll see what I mean.

The cool thing that I recently discovered with Lumines is the menu’s background techno music. If you’ve ever accessed a few of the menus, you’d see that each successive menu adds a new beat to the song. Go deep into the menus and your song will really be cooking. I just think this is amazing. Going through the menus over and over again actually creates a dynamic song. Eat your heart out, Elecktroplankton.

This is the stuff that developers should be looking at when designing games. Do something for the sheer passion of it all. Don’t just come up with something that satisfies your boss or the publisher. Try to truly innovate. Or at least give us an experience that hasn’t already been done a million times before just because you were too lazy to think of anything better.

But that’s a whole other story. As of now, my high score on Lumines is about 195,000 points. Anybody out there beat me?


  1. TrueTallus said on October 26, 2006:

    195,000 huh? Have you gotten to the last skin in the regular mode (challenge I think)?

  2. Matt said on October 26, 2006:

    I don’t think so, actually. I believe, in Challenge Mode, the final skin appears at about 250K. I’m close, but not there yet. I have a total of about 25 skins, but that also includes a few skins from CPU Mode. 

  3. jay said on October 26, 2006:

    I never played Lumines but am a big fan of Meteos. In fact, I meant to publicly chastise Pat for not mentioning how the music is built from the gameplay in his Meteos review. Also, any time someone mentions music games I’m contractually obligated to bring up Kenji Eno’s Enemy Zero.

  4. pat said on October 26, 2006:

    does publicly saying you meant to chastise me function as publicly chastising me, or does it not count without the threat of the pillory? either way, i probably deserve it.  i am probably one of the least musical people you will ever meet (for those of you who ever meet me) and rarely even notice music unless its particularly bad. 

  5. Matt said on October 26, 2006:

    I love Meteos. That was probably the first DS game that I played that never made me think I was playing with a stylus. It just worked. And the musical integration was very cool, but not as pleasing as Lumines. The whole MIDI presentation just couldn’t cut it against redbook audio from a UMD. 

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