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Rhythm Week at Wiiloveit

posted 6 Feb 2012, 20:38 by Knuckles Sonic8   [ updated 12 Feb 2012, 21:20 ]
Rhythm games sure have come a long way. Starting from one of the first pioneers of rhythm-based gaming, Dance Dance Revolution -- which is still growing and very much relevant today -- this sector of the industry has grown to include such explosive hits as Rock Band, Guitar Hero and Just Dance. Most current platforms have had their own iconic rhythm game sit in the saddle, as it were, and especially recently we've seen just how far developers can stretch these titles to the point that they wear them out completely. Thankfully, while we're still very much in the phase of dance-focused titles and are currently contending with all the backlash that has come with that, the incessant milking that was once led by Activision in particular has now ceased for the most part.

In the midst of all this hoopla, we've had some pretty interesting experiments come to Nintendo platforms over the past decade. One of these is Donkey Konga (pictured above), a game I regretfully never had the opportunity to play. The use of an additional peripheral in this case (the DK Bongos) was completely warranted and it offered a style of play that really hadn't been attempted before. That allure is likely what led Nintendo to developing a whole series out of it.

Along with that, there have also been some innovative one-off's as well, with the easiest example to point to being Elite Beat Agents. Just stemming off that, you could say that the DS in general sure had its healthy share of games for the musically inclined, from frenetic and addictive mix-ups in Rhythm Heaven; to the classical, more obscure themes of Maestro! Green Groove; and the more avant-garde style present in the likes of Electroplankton. Some of these have grown to become well-regarded, positive spins on the genre, which is great to see considering this genre isn't nearly as flocked to as it once was. I'm happy to report that thus far, we've been seeing this spirit of innovation carry forward moving over to the 3DS, with SEGA offering us a new face to inspect with Rhythm Thief R. We'll get into more detail on that subject later on this week, though.

For now, all things considered, I think you'll agree that it's time for rhythm-based gaming (and its sub-categories of music and dance) to step it up once more. With this becoming more of a need now that we're on the brink of moving past these trendy projects, we're looking to get you to think about rhythm games all week here at Wiiloveit. In analyzing where rhythm games are moving (if they are), do you think the Wii U will breathe new life into this challenged area of gaming? Could we see something as innovative as the likes of Wii Music, but without the controversy? Consider these and other topics as you explore the different reviews and articles we've prepared for you this week. Hopefully this initiative will give you something to think about for the upcoming year.