Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Cytus [Rayark Inc.] - $1.99

Music based games on the iOS are almost always a disappointment. Miku Flick and Groove Coaster are the only ones that come to mind that have really kept my attention for more than a couple of minutes. Now, Rayark’s first iOS title, Cytus is another game that I can add to that very small list. Having incredibly easy to understand controls and gameplay along with fantastic graphics and all coupled with a great soundtrack, Cytus might just be my favorite music game on the iOS to date. 

Cytus’s gameplay is centered around tapping on bubbles when the line following along with the tempo crosses over them. Helping you figure out what bubbles need to be tapped, they grow from grey into a brightly colored mix of purple, blue and pink when the tempo line is going up, and yellow, green and orange when the line is going down and they’re ready to be hit. This makes for some very simple gameplay, but offers up the possibility of some very complex tapping, and developer, Rayark takes full advantage of that. Starting off, you’ll be able to play through only a couple of the available tracks, and only Easy Difficulty will be accessible. Once you complete songs with specific ratings, usually a B or above, you’ll unlock more tracks, and getting an A will unlock the Hard Difficulty for that track as well. 

There are 15** available tracks within the game, and with a fairly wide mix of genres ranging from Jazz and Pop to Trance and Drum & Bass, there’s a pretty high chance that you’ll fall in love with at least one of the songs in the game. Even if you’re not a fan of the music, it fits in perfectly with the graphic look and feel of the whole game, and is by no means cheesy like quite a few of the music games available. 

However, even with the great gameplay, awesome graphics, nice music and all around fantastic feeling of the game, there are a couple of issues. The bubbles that you’ll be tapping on do have a fairly large area for a ‘Perfect’ hit and a ‘Good’ hit. This does make the gameplay a little more easy than I originally thought it would be when watching videos of gamers playing songs on hard difficulty. There’s also some sections which, unless you know the song and bubbles by heart, are almost impossible to hit right because of where your fingers are placed right before. This is mainly an issue when there are bubbles that need to be held down on the screen for extended periods of time, and not when there are just bubbles that need to be tapped quickly. While holding down on these, there’s almost always quick tap bubbles that don’t appear until you let up off of the screen, either hidden under the line of the held down note, or directly under where your fingers are. 

There are 3 leader boards on GameCenter, one for your Total Easy Score, another for your Total Hard Score, and one for your Total Score which combines the totals of both difficulties. This does add quite a bit of replay value to the game, especially if you’re a high-score chasing GameCenter addict like myself. With Cytus being Universal, and priced at only $1.99, it’s a no-brainer. If you’re a fan of Musical Rhythm Based games, Cytus is one iOS game that you need to have on your device. There’s also more songs coming in future updates, which will be available for free, which is always great to hear. For their first iOS title, Rayark has done an outstanding job with Cytus. Hopefully this is just a glimpse of what they have in store for iOS gamers in the future. 

** There are actually 19 tracks in the game. Once you unlock hard mode on the track "Precipitation" you can drag up or down on the screen with two fingers, unlocking the secret. Sorry about this.


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