Friday, February 19, 2010

Review: "Maestro! Jump in Music"

As I am currently still unable to dedicate at least two hours in front of my consoles whenever I'm home (which is not very often), I decided to browse through DS games in search for anything interesting. 'Maestro! Jump in Music' was a recent game that caught my attention.

It is rather weird to classify this game. It is a hybrid of action and rhythm games, although there is more focus on the rhythm part. You play as the pink-colored Presto the Bird, trying to save the world from eternal silence by the evil spider Staccato. As you play the game, you travel from stages to stages, eventually playing against Staccato every 3 stage you complete.

Every stage represents a song. The songs are mostly classical, though there are a couple of rock-songs-turned-classical-songs. Most of the songs in the game are popular, unless you are REALLY REALLY deprived of all classical music in your life.

Like all 2D action games, Presto starts at the left corner of the stage and makes his way towards the right end of the stage. He will move across the stage automatically fast or slow, indicating the 'tempo' of the song.

As he moves, you are required to perform actions with your stylus onto the touch screen. Presto walks along a rope throughout the game. You can move your stylus up across the rope Presto is standing on to make him fall, or down across the rope to make him jump. This is to allow him to collect items essential for playing the missing sounds in the music played in the background.

There are a bunch of other actions you can do. You are required to 'strum' on strings located all over the stage at the right rhythm even though Presto is not on it. This also fills in the sounds to the music. Other actions include tapping on enemies to 'defeat them' (essentially playing a sound), drawing circles at vortexes, etc. Don't worry, they are all covered briefly in their respective tutorials.

When you encounter staccato, you are essentially playing a memory game. Staccato plays a series of sounds, you try to reproduce it using the same tools. You keep doing it until Staccato is defeated.

Overall, 'Maestro! Jump in Music' may not be greatest or the most fun rhythm game around, but it's still a fresh and novel idea that actually worked. I have loads of fun tapping, strumming and rubbing the touch screen as I try to find the best way for Presto to make his way across the stage for the perfect score. The only problem is that that there's not enough songs to play with.

Definitely a must-try.

NeetGeek gives this a 7.5/10


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