ISSUE #8 FEB 06

Richard Sawyer

Amplitude

12th June 2005
reviewer: Richard Sawyer
rating: 4 out of 5
developed by: Harmonix
published by: SCEE
released:
rrp: £29.99
formats: PS2

On paper this follow up to Sony’s superb Frequency offers more of the same, but with the addition of online play; and in practice, to a certain extent this is true too. However, with a game like this, the song selection is everything, and to a certain extent the games (Frequency and Amplitude) are exhaustive in their nature. By this I mean that once you have played a track to death, it is not worth playing again; thus a new game with all new tracks is very appealing.


Stepping back a little, the concept of the game is simple, yet addictive. Press the correct sequence of buttons on a given section of a music track, and that instrument/voice/whatever then plays for a given period of time, chain all of the instruments together to get the whole song playing. If you mess up too much, it’s game over, but keep on going without making mistakes, building up combos, and you’ll get massive scores and unlock more tracks to play. In this respect it is similar to an extreme sports game like Tony Hawks, where the player garners pleasure in a good old fashion getting high scores manor.


The on and offline multiplayer modes are a welcome addition. The power-ups really come into their own here; giving the players a real ability to get one over each other, and it makes for an exciting frantic “battle”. The game excels when two similarly skilled plays meet; in many ways the game is held back by being a Sony game. By this I mean, that it would work so well on Xbox Live, that it would have gained a greater following.


The game is not without its inherent faults, as mentioned earlier; when you are bored of the songs there is little else to prolong your enjoyment. However, to counter balance this, the songs themselves are a good mix, and work well within the game. There is something for almost everyone here, with many credible acts rearing their heads. Overall, it’s a solid, enjoyable, and uncommonly original game. Worth picking up if you’re a new comers or fan of the series.