Release Date: August 7, 2012
Developer: Queasy Games
ESRB Rating: E
The PSN has been getting some pretty great exclusives lately, Dyad for one, and now Sound Shapes. This comes from the geniuses at Queasy Games, who created Everyday Shooter, and similar to ES, music drives the game from beginning to end.
Sound Shapes really stands alone when it comes to its stunning visuals and music, there really isn't anything else out there that comes close to it. Just like Everyday Shooter, the music in the game is pleasuring to the ears. The ever-changing sounds throughout each stage will force you to stop and appreciate the sounds coming through your speakers more often than not. Jim Guthrie and Jonathan Mak are just two of the names that lead an all star ensemble of composers that deliver a musical experience second to none. Given that the game is becoming well known for its stellar audio, the visuals packs a punch as well. Although the game looks unique, if you've played the Sword and Sworcery Game, it can look similar to that game at times. The 20 stages all look different and will have your eyes in awe, as you gaze upon many bright and colorful backgrounds and levels. The game is always smooth and never slows down, fluidity is definitely one of the game's strong points. The game definitely has a lot of simplicity in it as well, lots of shapes and objects inhabit each stage rounding the perfect presentation.
Like I previously mentioned, the game features 20 awesome stages for you to exercise your platforming prowess on. The gameplay is a simple platformer, featuring jump after jump. Your blob will be collecting all the sounds in each level that increase the amount of music you'll be hearing. Each sound you pick up will add a another beat, or drum, or sound that all comes together at the end of the level. Fans of Super Meat Boy will be attracted to the precise and tight controls the game flaunts. The slightest wrong move will have you restarting at the last checkpoint. The game isn't as unforgiving as SMB, thanks to the generously placed checkpoints. Progressing through the campaign will earn you different building blocks for creating your own stages. Beat School and Death Mode will be the two extra modes to unlock after finishing the pretty short campaign. Beat School challenges you to compose beats using the specific tools the game gives you. Since I love all kinds of music, this mode is a real treat. Death mode is a lot more tougher, hence the name Death Mode. You be asked to collect a certain amount of objects with a time limit. Its a cool mode for the completists out there, but I found myself spending a lot of time in the Beat School mode, but thats just me.
Sound Shapes is a pretty complete package for only $15 bucks. If you happen to own a PS3 and Vita, then you get both versions for the price of one. Another plus for the penny-penchers, including myself. This is easily one of the best games I've played this year so far, just a wonderful experience all around.
S&S Rating: 9.5/10