What do you get when you mix tactical action with one heck of a killer beat? The answer to that question is the recently released Orgarhythm for the PlayStation Vita. Developed by Acquire and published by Xseed Games, this RTS-Rhythm game will have you marching along to the beat. Thankfully this beat is well done and succeeds in giving the Vita a much needed boost to its library.
In Orgarhythm, gamers take the role of a god who is commanding his army, moving through the world on a pre-destined path. As your god marches through the world, you will have to take on whatever comes your way and do it fast, as the game does not allow you to zoom out and look ahead. This throws enemies on top of you and forces gamers to make a quick decision. It is this kind of quick thinking, mixed with the rhythm aspect that will make things extremely crazy.
Added to this frenetic action is the fact that enemies come in three different colors and so do your troops. Blue troops better red troops, red counters yellow, and yellow takes out blue. Each of these troops can also attack hand to hand, ranged, or siege weapons. Quick thinking will be required as you may have to send out yellow attacks and then quickly send out blue ranged weapons to another area of the screen. Your god also has five abilities to use himself, ranging from heals and buffs, to a “heavenly bolt” attack.
To move around your troops, you have to tap the icon color to the beat, then select what type of troop and swipe the screen to point them where to move. As you select each icon to the beat, you will receive a bad, good, or excellent rating. By hitting all ‘excellent’s, your troops will level up and grow in size. On the opposite side of that, if you hit a lot of ‘bad’s, your troops will struggle and you won’t last very long. Some of this might sound confusing and if it is don’t worry, there are tutorials to show you everything.
After stomping your way through each level, you will reach a boss fight which will test all of your skills. These fights are extremely intense, requiring you to order around all three colors of troops to different areas of the fight, selecting through ranged and hand to hand at incredible speeds. Each boss is totally unique from the last and requires new tactics to take out. You will often need to die once or twice on the boss while you figure out your bearings and learn the best way to take them out.
As you jump into the game you will notice that there isn’t a single use for your face buttons. Yes you heard that right, you will play the entire game, menus and everything, with the touch screen. Good thing is, the touch controls work great. It might be a slight adjustment for those used to hitting buttons to make it through a game, but once you get into a groove, you won’t even notice the lack of buttons.
Since this is a game based around music, the soundtrack needs to be rock solid and I can say for sure that the music is top notch. The game has a nice blend of rock and electronic that will have you dancing to the beat along with helping you to time your finger taps. You will want to keep your beats timed perfectly as the music changes with each level you increase. Keep getting excellent scores with your taps and the beat speeds up. Start getting a few bad ratings in a row and the beat really slows down.
The game is not without it’s flaws – you will be doing the same thing over and over, so it might become a bit too repetitive for some. Adding to this pain is the fact that the game is rather short (about five hours or less on normal). So if you don’t plan to dig in and get all perfect scores and earn every skill in the game, you might not get your money’s worth. The game does offer co-op and versus modes through ad-hoc local play, which I would have loved to tried if only there was someone within range to play.
Orgarhythm does a great job of blending two genres together in a perfect celebration of music and strategy. The game is rather short and can become repetitive, but what is there in that time limit is executed perfectly. A killer soundtrack and quick-thinking action will give you a great reason to pick up your Vita. Just make sure you watch out when in public, as you just might start dancing to the addictive beat.