After one long week of doing a lot of Art Schooling and gaming off in Steam (thanks to Kuya Vince!), letâ€™s get into the groove for Week 5 of MMO Shenanigans!
This week, we cover on some Music/Dance-themed online games. I’ve had a lot of friends who LOVE the Music/beat genre. they are Epic on DrumMania, DJ Max/Technika, GuitarFreaks, DanceDance Revolution, ParaParaParadise, Dance Maniax and even my own cousins owned many when it comes to Harmonix games such as Guitar Hero and Rock Band! It took them skill, time, and guts to master these skills by playing songs over and over in the arcades, watching gameplays of other people trying to perfect these songs (in times those particular players use alternative ways of playing such games in order to drag themselves to the next level), and mostly just not be a sore loser when someone loses or fails.
And yet, here I am, reviewing to you three dance/music-themed MMOS that give us the sense that we can be as awesome in the arcades by the means of competitive battling, cooperation, and the fact that we can use our computer keyboards to unleash the divine power of ROCK!
Country of Origin:Korea
Genre:Â Casual MMO
Company of Origin:Â O2Media
Playable Distributors:Â E-games (no longer online)
Current Gameplay Status:Â Dropped
O2Jam, one of the earliest MMOs in the Philippines that uses and promotes the musical genre, is a game that many have played, mastered, and/or loved. Itâ€™s technically using the power of typing on a keyboard at the same time the notes fall and hit the destinated zone (Beatmania!). Sorta like when you play DDR/Guitar Hero with a regular controller: Itâ€™s not really too fun when you are not using your entire body to groove. But when you master such an art of doing a music game using a mere controller, wellâ€¦ itâ€™s pretty sweet and imba.
We do have a server here in the Philippines a while back, and all rooms were free-to-play. I will tell you guys the problem with the item malls in a bit. Default song list are you usual K-Pop songs famous at the time and you can download some OPMs and the latest songs by usuallyÂ downloadingÂ from the item mall. I dunno where it went now, but it was somehow replaced by the newest game called Bandmaster and those who still want the sweet taste of O2Jam would go to sites and download some free clients for non-stop gameplaying! (I’m not promoting anything here, just saying that th… I’ll shut up now.)
The Game’s HUD. I have nothing else to say.
One time, I have played with a German friend in a Malaysian server. And yes, while I had to use a proxy to play a few times every day just to play with other people from other countries (Germany was one of the countries that the Malayian server approves of). It was a pretty good time, though nowadays i play with strangers who I HAVE to trust or I simply play alone.
Oh yeah, knowing how to type on a keyboard? Great Advantage! No seriously. Learning how to properly type on a keyboard will give you a really great advantage in surviving the harder versions of songs! Practice is also a must.
A Korean Dance game that plays along the lines of Enixâ€™s rhythm-dance classic â€œBust a Move/Grooveâ€, this little game involves you and many other players battling together by the means of dancing to the 4-step beat. The game is simple enough, fill the arrows within the 4-beat timeline and most of your points will determine on how fast can you fill the assigned buttons and how accurate is your timing on the fourth beat (the space bar.) the better you are earlier in the game, the more levels will you reach, the harder and more buttons you will press to fill your quota while still be in the beat, the more points will be given to you.
Uhm, never mind.
And if you do reach past level 7, the highest in-battle level possible in the game, you end up doing a fever time: which is just you break dancing unexpectedly. And you go back to level 4… or 5 until the game ends. You win points and gold which you can use for your shopping spree. The music list is pretty much your average K-pop, but one thing I did love was the Audition trailerÂ which had a pretty catchy tune that I didn’t hear in any of the game battles I have played!
Freestyle Mode. Always.
Also, there is an Audition 2 that isÂ releasedÂ only in Korea, with better graphics, more music, and the fact that we Filipinos are still waiting for it if we ever know of its existence.
This game over here, is one of the games I solely admit to just play recently, due to the fact that this was one of the newest games in the E-Games lineup. But one of my friends who did play this game offered some of the observations of the game and the problems she has faced while doing so. But yes this is a mix of O2Jam, Beatmania and Rock Band, where every instrument has its own beat to tune to.Â So yes, you get to play in a variety of instruments: Guitars, drum sets, Pianos, Bass, Synthesizers and even SKA up your game by adding Brass (Saxophone?) instruments.
Seems familiar, isn’t it?
Musicwise, the selection is more mixed with your average K-pop, J-pop, C-pop, and even something from our Western friends with some Pop Rock, Disco, Heavy Metal, and… Christmas Songs? Though you still need to buy some premium songs by the means of ITEM MALLING!
So the gameplay is pretty simple: If you are good at O2Jam or all those beat games, you can pretty much master Bandmaster since the keyboard commands is technically easier with A,S, and D on your left, and right arrow, down arrow, and left arrow in your right. Simply, press those buttons to the correct circle the moment it hits the zone. You can either co-op with other players to level-up your skills (with the theme of if one falls, the band falls along ideal of the game), survival of the fittest members with the SOS concerts, or the last band standing with VS Battle.
One big problem I have with this game? The Item Mall.. Clothes, items, and other stuff are divided into two types: Those that are paid with normal in-game money which is too simple and nothing very unique, and those that are paid by your charged money by the means of loading through prepaid cards which contains epic, pretty and awesome. Also, the problem with some of the E-game Item malls is that your items are pretty limited. You end up renting all of the items for a certain period of time instead of buying the stuff that will last forever. There were also complaints from my friend about some lagging problems with her Windows 7 laptop, but it leaves speculation to many.
That does it, I’m gonna go to 7-11 and buy a top-up card.
Tune in next time, where we go for… a SURPRISE THEME! 😀