Auditorium [rating: 5/5]
EA Mobile are known for their big name games, Rock Band, Madden NFL, The Sims 3 and Scrabble to name but a few, however with Auditorium EA are changing gear and porting a little known web based puzzle game where the game is more about the experience than the winning.
Right from the first level you will instantly see that this is a unique puzzle game. Both it’s look and feel are very minimalistic with any colors used beyond the main colors of black and white kept to a minimum which create a very relaxing feel, something that EA claim the whole game to be.
The first of 5 acts consist of 7 levels and these first levels introduce you to the basics of the game. At the beginning you will be presented with a ‘flow’ of particles which you need to guide through the various audio containers that are on the screen. It’s the passing through of these audio containers that creates the sounds and harmonies and ultimately complete each level allowing you to move on to the next.
Manipulating the flow is done via a variety of of different controls. You’ll start with the basics, the direction controls simply controls the direction of the flow and can be both re-positioned and resized to redirect the flow through to the audio containers and the sweet melodies that indicate the completion of the level.
The re-direction controls are the only ones you’ll need on the early levels but as you progress through the 5 acts and 30 levels of the game you’ll get introduced to other control methods including the Attract, Repel, Deflect and even the Rabbit to help you manipulate your flow of musical particles through to the audio containers.
As you progress a new feature is added called color controls. These don’t help direct the flow of the particles instead they change the color and this is necessary as the audio containers will also be color coded too. This again racks up the difficulty but also the reward.
There’s no scoring in Auditorium, which for some will be unforgivable, how do you rate your success, how do you rank yourself against other players? Well, simply put, you don’t! The pleasure of the game, (can a game without a competitive edge be called a game?) is in the playing and as you move through the levels not only does the difficulty raise but also the pleasure in playing the the levels and esp. completing them.
Not only do melodies cascade beautifully out of the speakers, wear headphones for the complete experience and the colors do create an audio visual delight.
EA are also utilizing in game purchasing for Auditorium. As mentioned previously you will get a total of 30 levels for your initial purchase which will set you back $2.99, much cheaper than their recent round of apps priced at $9.99 but it could soon add up to that if you purchase the additional levels that offer more challenges, concepts, colors and themes. Each additional Act from the in game store is set at 99c but whether this will be seen as adding additional value, or simply a way to raise more money remains to be seen.
This game won’t appeal EA’s usual crowd and if you are expecting an all signing all dancing application like their other big budget games then you will probably be disappointed. But look at this game with an open mind, ears and you will be pleasantly surprised.
The Not So Good
- Additional levels at a cost won’t appeal to all
Reviewed by: @CraigWillis