Chime Super Deluxe PS3 Review

Publisher: Valcon Games  Developer: Zoe Mode  Genre: Puzzle, Rhythm Action  Players: 1-4

Age Rating: 3+  Other console/handheld formats: Xbox 360

Released last year with quite a hefty chunk of publicity, puzzler Chime proved to be quite a hit with both gamers and charity lovers alike. For gamers, its fresh take on the puzzle genre with a twist on the likes of Tetris and Lumines, satisfied that brain teasing itch we’d been eager to scratch for an age. And with a portion of the proceeds of every game sale going direct to a variety of charities, it certainly shared some of our cash with those desperate for the coinage.

The aim of the game itself was simple. Utilising the various oddly shaped blocks the game gives you, you’re tasked with creating four sided shapes which when passed upon by the on screen slider, will disappear. And taking into account the size of each shape that you’ve created, a nice chunk of points stacks up in your name. The background music too will add another layer with each crafted shape, giving the in game experience a lovely sense of progression as the time progresses.

And if you wish to take things leisurely and simply enjoy the experience that the simple mechanics and music can offer, that can be the end of it. But there’s all kinds of ways to keep that score ramping up ever higher, with totals spiralling dizzyingly upwards. You can expand each shape you’ve created, even after it’s been set and accepted by simply placing down new blocks in order to expand the borders. And if you create multiple shapes in one go, then it’s bags more points (and Trophies) for you. It’s simple, yet packs enough depth that it can truly get frantic as the time ticks ever closer to zero, and your total grid coverage slowly makes its way to a perfect total of 100%.

It’s obviously heavily influenced by the likes of Tetris, and in particular the brilliant PSP launch title Lumines, but it all works to such an incredibly high degree of accomplishment that you can’t fail but be enthralled. In fact, if you’re a fan of either you’ll find yourself setting scores towards the upper echelons of the online leaderboards in double quick time.

It’s taken a while for the title to appear on the PlayStation 3, but at least it’s arrived in a much bulked up format. The original 5 music tracks and base grid shapes have been doubled, and a brand new set of multiplayer options have also been crafted. Now you can join up with up to another 3 fellow gamers in order to cover the entire grid as swiftly as possible, or compete on a versus basis. All wonderful additions, and only expand on what was already quite a weighty amount of features and fun.

Chime Super Deluxe hasn’t had much of a graphical overhaul, meaning that it remains a fairly attractive yet sparse experience. Whether any more visual clutter may have done nothing but detract from the puzzle focussed action is certainly worth thinking about, the music certainly plays a large part in making Chime the title it is. With it tying in so closely to the action on screen, it certainly gives the push forward when you feel the ever expanding shapes getting a little too much.

Chime Super Deluxe obviously builds on what made the original so fondly loved by many. The doubling of the number of boards and music tracks to play means that this PS3 version is by far the most impressive currently available. So with an excellent puzzle experience, and that promise of helping charity too, what kind of gamer could truly pass up on getting hooked on Chime?