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Review: Dancing Lights

March 3, 2010 , Posted by App-reciation Reviews at 5:28 PM

Category: Games

Price: $ 0.99
Requirements: iPhone or iPod touch, OS 3.0 or later
Version: 1.1

What's good: As the AppStore evolves, many games are becoming increasingly complex, and they usually involve breathtaking 3D graphics, complicated scores and sountracks, detailed gameplay. All that is well and good, but sometimes players are also just looking for a simple way to relax and enjoy a little fun on their iDevices.

Inspired by a comment made by Nintendo President Satoru Iwata back in 2005, developer David Anton set out to create an app propelled by a simplicity largely lost in today's gaming era - one "played by sound and touching light," finally coming up with a puzzle game that he calls Dancing Lights. Unlike most other titles in iTunes, his minimalist creation doesn't make use of intricate detail or staggering arrangements to bolster its gameplay. Instead, every level brings a new set of dazzling lights and a single glowing light force, the objective being to illuminate all the lights on the screen using only your senses and guided by intuition rather than instruction. The resulting experience is pure, relaxing, beautiful, and as we understand it, different for every person.

Perhaps it can be said that this app most closely resembles Lights Out, but even then, there really is little comparison. There are a hundred different solutions to each level, and a hundred ways to go about the process. In the end, the best that can be said is that this is less a game than it is an experience - and an entirely personal one, at that. The developer's words sums it up better than we ever could: "Dancing Lights is a re-imagining of childhood discovery. Behind its abstract shapes and basic rules is a world of limitless depth, morphing into different forms based on your thoughts and mood. Will the experience be relaxing, tense, intriguing, or something completely different? Simply touch a light and see where it takes you."

Suggestions for improvement: Although simplicity is part of the magic of this app, there could be more interaction to keep players interested after a period of time.

Breakdown:
Graphics - 4/5 Creativity - 4/5 Gameplay - 3/5 Controls - 4.5/5
App-reciation - 3.75/5


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