Hatsune Miku Project Diva Future Tone Review – Producing Perfection
Platform: PlayStation 4
Release Date: Jan 10, 2017
MSRP: Colorful Tone pack – $29.99, Future Sound pack – $29.99, both as a bundle: $53.99
ESRB Rating: T
Thank You SEGA for Providing a Review Copy of this Game.
Hatsune Miku Project Diva: Future Tone for the PS4 is actually made of two packs when you go to purchase it off of PSN. One is called Future Sound, with the other called Colorful Tone, hence the game’s title Future Tone. Each can be bought and played separately, but once both are owned it becomes a giant playlist of over 200 songs. That’s right. Not two, not twenty, but two-hundred. If you’ve played the Project Diva games before, you’ll recognize some of the songs listed in Future Sound as that’s where they’ve derived from. Colorful Tone uses music from the Project Mirai series as well as the actual arcade game itself.
Future Tone feels more or less like your usual Project Diva game. A note appears on the screen, with its matching note flying from a corner from the screen towards it and once both are lined up you press the corresponding button. These notes are your four face buttons and four directional buttons. To make things easier, the face buttons and directional buttons co-relate meaning up on the D-pad and triangle preform the same action, down on the D-Pad functions the same as the X face button, and so on. Future Tone introduces slider notes as well, which can be used as your left and right shoulder buttons, or the left and right analogue sticks. Of course, if you don’t like this setup, the game lets you re-map the entire control scheme to your liking.
As the song plays there is a bar on the top of the screen in addition to a gauge on the bottom. The top bar is your health. If you hit a note correctly, your health will increase, and if you hit a note correctly while at max health you’ll get bonus points. Adversely, if you hit a note incorrectly, your health will decrease. The gauge on the bottom tells you how far along in the song you are, along with a blue bar filling up said gauge as you correctly hit notes. Depending on your settings you have a few lines going through the bottom bar. The border line shows you how far along the song is. This moves whenever a note disappears and will stop moving once it’s lined up with the red line, when notes will stop appearing. If the gauge ever starts blinking, that means it’s behind this line and is indication that you will fail the song. The other optional lines for you to see are how well you’re ranked. If you’re ahead of the Great line, then you’ll be ranked Great, but if you’re ahead of the Excellent line, then you’ll be ranked Excellent instead. Of course, the only other rank above that is Perfect, which doesn’t have a line to indicate it.
If finding the song you want is proving a little difficult, the game provides multiple ways to make the process easier. You can sort the song listings by name, how difficult the song is (this is different from the outright difficulty setting as you can then easily find the “hardest song on hard”), who the singer is, and by score. There’s nothing stopping you from playing the song you want immediately as they’re all unlocked from the start. However, it should be noted that some songs aren’t available in every difficulty setting. For instance, there are only 149 tracks available on easy, but the full 224 song list is available on hard. If it helps, the game has modifiers for you to use before you begin the track, such as making the notes invisible right before it’s time to hit them, or having a “no fail” mode so you can at least practice the song a bit. Also, if you don’t want to play the song at all, you can just sit back and watch it with all the UI hidden and out of the way. Once a song is completed, you’ll be scored, get some money to purchase various accessories, and your Future Sound rank or your Colorful Tone rank will increase. Which rank increases is dependent on which pack the song came from. Lastly, if you’re comfortable with the score you got, you can upload it for all to see. If not, hit Retry, and try again. If you’ve gotten comfortable playing on the harder difficulties, there’s a hidden mode for you to try out, too.
Since the game mainly uses songs and music videos found in other games, seeing them updated graphically in Future Tone is a sight for sore eyes – the songs look better than ever. With the game running at 60fps it’s incredibly responsive. Moving from Vita to using a wireless controller with the PS4, I thought there would be some issues somewhere, but thankfully there weren’t any. If you are having trouble for any reason with the timing, however, there is a lag configuration tool for you to use at your disposal (found in the Options menu). To go even further with it, you can even customize the game’s lag on a per-song basis so it’s suited just for you.
Gameplay stuff aside, there are also other things to do in the game. If you’d like, you can make a playlist of your favorite songs and watch them play back-to-back instead of going through the giant song list and watching them one by one. As mentioned earlier there’s all sorts of new accessories to unlock for your Diva of choice. Naturally, you can see where you hold up in the ranks by looking at other people’s scores.
There isn’t much to not like about this game. Truthfully, this the ultimate Hatsune Miku game to own – especially if you’re new to Vocaloids. With this game you’ll see a ton of classics such as Love is War, The World is Mine, Ievan Polkka. If you’re a long time fan of the series, sure, you’ve more than likely seen and played all of these songs before, but having them all in one spot with fresh coat of paint is a real treat. If there was something to nitpick at, it would be that the songs aren’t translated, but at the very least, the music videos have Romanji placed in them so one could sing along if they truly wanted to. All-in-all, the title of the game should be called Future Proof instead. It’ll be hard to not only go back and play older games, but it’ll be harder to justify buying new games unless their track list is substantially increased from the norm.
+The amount of songs to choose from
+Hundreds of modules to unlock
+Amazing looking Music Videos