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Chime Super Deluxe

 

 

SCORE: 85

 

Chime Super Deluxe 

 

Chime Super Deluxe by Zoe Mode Entertainment is Tetris meets Mozart. Actually comparing it to Mozart may be going a bit too far, but the general idea of the game is to place different shaped blocks on a grid which in turn makes music…sort of.

The appearance of Chime is crisp and clean. The game menus are simple and easy to navigate. The game grids are colorful and vary in shape as are the bricks that you maneuver. This puzzle game is safe for the entire family and contains no trace of any potentially offensive visual content.

Chime Super Deluxe touts itself as a game where the player makes music by placing shapes on the grid. As you drop your blocks on the grid, a “beatline” scrolls over the grid in time with the music. As this beatline impacts your shape blocks and “quads” (we’ll get to those later), the game makes different sounds. These musical variations are interjected on top of the background music and this is what Chime considers making music. I personally found that these little variations went largely unnoticed as I played. You can detect little notes being triggered as the beatline hits your shapes, but it is hardly what I would consider music creation. The game’s levels are each based around a different musical track. These tracks each vary in style with some having a classical feel while others have more of a new age sound. A few of these tracks were enjoyable to listen to during gameplay while others were repetitive to the point of irritation. Happily the game does not contain any foul language or offensive sounds, so parents at least need not worry about the safety of the audio in Chime Super Deluxe.

As far as replay and extra features go Chime is pretty slim, but it still has a lot to offer. Featuring only 10 levels, it doesn’t take long to breeze through the game. Having said that, once players unlock the free play mode they can progress to different stages of each level which means there are actually more than 10 grid designs to be found within the game. This game also lends itself to being replayed. Those of us who enjoy compulsively arranging little digital blocks so that they fit together nicely will find ourselves with a certain desire to return to the game again and again. This is one of those games that could become addicting if left unchecked, so you’ve been warned. Chime includes a multi-player mode in which up to four players can go head-to-head or work co-operatively. This feature adds an additional dimension to the game which makes it possible for friends and family members to enjoy this game together. These multi-player modes are local play only, so you won’t be able to play on-line. Chime carries a price tag of about $10 on the PlayStation Store. While this is not a high priced game, I personally feel that it should be in more of the $5 range considering the limited amount of content.

The gameplay of Chime Super Deluxe is satisfying and creates somewhat of a compulsion to keep playing. The single player mode provides 9, 6, and 3 minute modes of play as well as a free play mode with no time limit. As I’ve hinted at above, players place differently shaped blocks on a grid with the goal of forming “quads”. Quads are formed by creating a solid four sided block that is at least 3x3 in size. I hesitate in comparing this game to Tetris as it’s really quite different, but to give you a mental picture the shapes that you place on the grid are similar to those of Tetris. In Chime, however, these shapes don’t fall into the screen. Instead you rotate them and place them on the grid anywhere you see fit with the goal of piecing them together to create a quad. Once you create a quad it begins to fill up like an empty glass from bottom to top. As it is filling, you have the opportunity to expand your quad by adding more pieces to any one of the sides of the quad thus creating a larger, more point heavy quad. I found this aspect of the gameplay to be the most enjoyable.  Another aspect of Chime is gaining coverage of the grid. Whenever a quad is created and stamped down by the beatline as it passes, the grid is then shaded to indicate that area has been covered. Gaining 50% coverage of the grid unlocks the next level of play, while gaining 100% coverage progresses the player to the next stage of the current level for some bonus scoring. Even after a portion of the grid has been covered it can still be reused when placing more shapes. This will not, however, increase your grid coverage. The controls in Chime Super Deluxe are very intuitive and work smoothly on the PS3. My only complaint is that if you’re not signed into the PlayStation Network, the game will nag you after each level to sign in so that your score can be posted to the on-line leaderboards. The obvious solution is to sign in and be done with it, but I found it quite irritating to be nagged.

This game is family friendly without a doubt and is something that can be enjoyed by family members of various ages. With co-op and competitive play available, there is the potential for some family game time. Chime Super Deluxe is free from offensive content in any way, shape, or form. While the music was not necessarily to my liking, there was nothing offensive about it. I found this game quite enjoyable to play and hope to see more content or a more robust sequel released in the future. If you’re into puzzle games similar to Tetris, Chime Super Deluxe offers a unique experience that’s safe for the whole family.
-Roger

 

Graphics: 83%
Sound: 82%
Replay/Extras: 80%
Gameplay: 93%
Family Friendly Factor: 86%
System: Playstation 3
Publisher: Zoe Mode Entertainment
ESRB Rating: 'NR' for Not Rated

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Roger@familyfriendlygaming.com