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Tech Demos Disney Fantasia: Music Evolved
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techjedi 16th Oct 2014

Joined: 17th Apr 2014
Rank: Delta-One
Posts: 947
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If you want the 5 second summary, here it is:
Place Fruit Ninja Kinect, Just Dance, and Rock Band in a blender and let it fly.

All joking aside, I feel like Harmonix really hit on a cool concept with Disney Fantasia: Music Evolved. The game mixes in a family friendly story-line, wherein you are the new apprentice to Yen Sid -- if you've seen the original Fantasia, he's the bearded sorcerer. As you progress through the tutorial and introductory levels, you are introduced to the various special gestures that comprise the musical magic: sweeping, punching, holds, and arm slides. Think of the required button combinations that Rock Band requires or the precise dance moves that Just Dance expects -- these are the building blocks for the music. Now add a mixture of one- and two-handed implementations of sweeping, jabbing, and slashing which are then dispersed throughout your digital screen space, and there you'll start to see where the Fruit Ninja aspects start to come into play.

It may sound disjointed, but when it all comes together it's really fun. You're not so much playing the music note-by-note, as you are conducting and punctuating the music (they'd say conjuring, this is magic after all). It's a neat feeling when you get into a good rhythm and finding yourself anticipating the next move even though you may never have played the song before. Ultimately the gaming aspect is what you would expect: points for hitting cues, activating multipliers, and at the end achieving a rating based on your accuracy percentage (out of a maximum of 5 musical notes, instead of stars).

At present, it appears that each song will come with 3 available versions: the original and 2 remixes. The neat part comes from the fact that you can actively remix the 3 versions on-the-fly (or at the start in free-play). So, you want to hear Imagine Dragon's Radioactive with synthesizer modulated vocals, the original drum track, and a heavier bass beat? You can make something like that happen, while also unlocking the ability (in-song) to add in your own custom rhythm effect.

I wasn't entirely certain if the demo was showcasing the full potential of the game, as there were parts where it seemed like maybe it wasn't a fully HD picture or perhaps the full game needs calibrating for black levels. Considering what I played was the demo, I'll cut it some slack, especially since most music/rhythm games I don't pay a lot of attention to the graphical quality of what's going on around the cues and notes. Also, I didn't get a chance to check out the multiplayer, which it appears 2 people can play together -- I think it's mostly cooperative, but I could see a little bit of musical battling happening.

Overall, I really enjoyed the demo of the game and I might consider grabbing the digital pre-order which comes with 3 expansion packs. The only caveat I have is this: prepare the ibuprofen ahead of time. I played pretty much everything the demo had to offer, about 30 minutes of content or so, and I could feel it in my shoulders at the end. I also felt my joints pop and crack a few times while playing, so be forewarned.

Rating: 4 of 5 Musical Notes
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"You must unlearn what you have learned... Try not. Do. Or do not. There is no try."

kbeau73 17th Oct 2014

Joined: 26th Mar 2014
Rank: Delta-One
Posts: 1725
Likes 164

It sounds interesting, maybe I'll have to download this and give it a try. The trial I mean.

At the end of this day, one shall stand... one shall fall! -Optimus Prime

techjedi 17th Oct 2014

Joined: 17th Apr 2014
Rank: Delta-One
Posts: 947
Likes 177

You should definitely give it a try.

"You must unlearn what you have learned... Try not. Do. Or do not. There is no try."

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