May 12, 2011
If you've been to the App Store on your iPad this past week, you've likely had to check your "pulse." Yes, Pulse : Volume One -- from developer Ciper Prime -- was Apple's featured Game of the Week, and it earned that accolade by bringing unique visuals, tons of polish, and atmospheric melodies to the cluttered iOS "music game" genre. Pulse : Volume One can best be described as a sort of Tap Tap Revenge meets Solar Walk. It presents interactive sounds as emanations from a central point, requiring the user to touch the orbiting motes as the wave crosses their paths. At first, the going is easy enough, but then Tough rears its ugly head as pauses between pulses grow shorter and shorter. Confetti ensues. Controlling things is all timing and super simple. You can play with one or two hands, both providing a markedly different experience. Employing the former strategem, you'll get into a sort of multi-fingered, hand-rolling groove, which is satisfying but limiting. The latter method will probably get you to higher levels, but it can be more of a hyperfocused tap-barrage than a fun, fluid experience. At $4.99, the app is a tad pricey for what you get, but the game is so well put-together that you won't be sorry dropping the cash. Pulse : Volume One is iPad-only and available now in iTunes. Grab it, play it, and wait for the sequels!