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Lyrica

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Title: Lyrica
Developer: RNOVA Studio
Publisher: Cosen
Website: http://en.cosen-net.com/lyrica/
Genre: Music, Education
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Audience: 3+
Release Date: 28/03/2019
Price: £17.09 – Rapid Reviews UK was very kindly provided with a review code for this title.

What the Developers say

This is a game that allows players to enjoy musical pieces that are fusions of the classical Chinese poetry of Li Bai and Du Fu with modern music such as rock, ballad, and jazz.

There are three modes, Story, in which the stories of modern and ancient China are intertwined, Songs, in which players can freely play pieces, and Challenge, in which players take on the challenge of clearing difficult requirements.

By achieving Achievements, additional components will be unlocked.

The musical pieces that can be chosen from will increase by clearing various requirements.

There are a total of 57 pieces that can be played. Other than pieces based on Chinese poetry, pieces inspired by the music of the indigenous people of Taiwan and Japanese pieces are also available, and the content also allows more people to become familiar with ancient Chinese literature as an entry to learning about it.

Summary

A young man who dreams of succeeding in life through music suddenly slips through time and space into ancient China and meets a mysterious poet.

Please enjoy the story that is intertwined with the historical anecdotes and classic masterpieces of famous poets.

Introduction

Being a female gamer, I fall into the typical serotype of loving Music Rhythm games. From Parappa the Rapper to Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan, there is nothing more appealing than synching with the beat of the music so well and creating a perfect chain along with the melody. Lyrica has come from your mobile phone to the Nintendo Switch with 57 pieces of music to lighten up your day. But has the transfer of this mobile game to console made a positive jump or just a leap of faith?

Looks and Sounds

Lyrica is a rhythm game that has the most stunning features, and the backgrounds look like hand-painted watercolour masterpieces with powerful colours blending into each other giving a dream-like quality to the surrounding, whereas the interfaces and menu is presented in a very modern aesthetic to keep the game fresh and well-ordered.

The gameplay screen itself is one of the many watercolour paintings blurred into obscurity, and you will get some minor graphics on the screen such as checkerboards that the triggers line into or Chinese pentagrams, there are no lengthy animation sequences that you may be used to seeing with most rhythm games such as project diva. The trigger keys that are used are a decent size for the touch screen and are beautifully coloured. As with most rhythm game, the trigger keys are hit with the beat or on a lyrical note, and in Lyrica, the Chinese character for the lyrics of the music is shown, and a blast of gold sparks fly from the mark.

Of course, this being a rhythm game the music score has to be exceptionally amazing to go along with the game, and Lyrica has a mix of traditional and modern music from both China, Japan and Taiwan, Giving a very J-pop feel with a large dose of jazz in the mix. It almost feels like the music you could hear playing at the back of an old cocktail bar where you would sit with your drink and tell the bartender your problems in hopes for a solution.

Gameplay and Replayability

Although you can use the Joy-Cons to navigate the menus and select songs, Lyrica is best played using the touch screen only and I find it is best to have your switch flat on a surface as some triggers require you to tap with 2 fingers and some of these can be spaced wide apart making it impossible to play one-handed. Like most rhythm games, you hit the triggers with the beat following a cursor.

Several different triggers can require you to tap, swipe, hold or follow a pattern on the screen. Hitting triggers can feel really over responsive, as moments where you think you have missed will result in a good or perfect. I even played a song on the hardest mode frantically tapping away at the fast-moving keys and managed a C grade.

With 3 game modes to select from, you can play through the story mode which follows an ancient poet from the Tang Dynasty named Li Bai, a young college student, Chun who has moved to the city and a high school student named Yang. Although story mode can feel quite dull at times, I would recommend completing it to unlock more artwork and songs. Although Story has you complete songs with specific requirements met, It can be quickly completed by changing the difficulty of the songs from Pro to Casual.

The challenge mode is full of tasks to complete such as having completed a song on a certain rank or missing no less than 6 notes, However, there is no changing the difficulty on these challenges and as you finish one, more will appear with a much more difficult task, completing these wills unlock additional FX for hitting triggers.

Next, we have the Songs where you can play any of the many songs that you have in your collection, unlock more songs from ether playing through story mode or from levelling up with your total score. Each song can be performed on either Easy, Normal, Hard or Master difficulty, You can view additional information on each song, such as the singer, an analysis of the poetry used and the lyrics of the song, but one thing that I do believe should have been added would be the inclusion of English translations of the songs.

Conclusion

Although I am in love with the use of watercolour art and the beautiful music from the east, it pains me that there are no English translations for the music and poetry that you are listening to, the mystery of what the words are referring to in the songs are somewhat frustrating for me.

As for the gameplay itself, it sometimes feels as if the trigger keys are very responsive, I would be getting perfect hits on a lot of these games when I know that I am hitting these triggers way too soon or too late. It sometimes makes me feel as if the game is far too easy. Another slight downside I found from the time I was playing is that the Story mode has some rare mistakes or errors, such as artwork of characters are wrongly swapped with others or the repeat of text being used by incorrect characters.

It can be confusing at times, and I don’t know whether these will be patched at a later date or if this will be fixed upon the game going live. This is by no means a game breaker, and I just found that reading the text a little slower to absorb the story meant I could fix these mistakes myself once I knew they were occasionally happening.

Rapid Reviews UK Rating

You can purchase Lyrica on the Nintendo eShop at the following link,
https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-Switch-download-software/Lyrica-1530907.html

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