Sound Shapes Preview

Turn my beat up!

I just told a developer that I generally hated a component that makes up a large part of their game. If you ever ask me to make my own level, I'd normally react by telling you to pay me first. I can't stand the density in the toolsets developers feel they should open to gamers.

I'd much rather have a developer create something for me than create something for my peers. Regardless, Sound Shapes manages to buck this deep-rooted hatred of level creation by giving me control over the soundtrack, in addition to the rather simple levels.

Of course, the PlayStation Vita's touch panels go to great lengths to lower the difficulty I normally find in creating my own levels. Laying the brickwork is easy when you select an initial placement with the front touchscreen and then manipulate the size and orientation with the rear touch panel.

The latest build of Sound Shapes at GDC featured a wealth of new enemy types and some devilishly challenging levels. Enemies and hazards still create sounds and beats, but anything you'd like to turn a track out of can be placed as an enticing coin on the landscape.

The developers at Queasy Games are still hard at work on the title and are busy locking down even more high-profile music-industry names for the game. Deadmau5 in particular has challenged the team by providing loops, instead of blips and beats. Still, as a piece of interactive music, Sound Shapes is sure to entice the audio-inclined at all levels.

I'm still amazed that I actually want to create something in the game. When the appointment ended, they had to tear the PlayStation Vita from my hands. I'm still wondering if I could have switched it for my own Vita and walked away with my most anticipated game of 2012.