Digital Life


Vote: Best music, rhythm, or party game of 2012

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Here at the tail end of our 2012 game voting, we have now reached the grab-bag categories. It might seem odd to have a serious guitar trainer like Rocksmith in the same poll as party minigame collections like Nintendo Land, but it's as close as we can get to a cohesive category for these games.

While these kinds of releases don't get a lot of respect, there is a surprisingly large number of really excellent games on the list. Rocksmith was released in the US last year, but we Aussies had to wait until 2012 to get an official local release. I wrote a series of articles earlier in the year about using Rocksmith as a serious learning tool, and I was pleased with how much serious guitar playing it taught me.

Another favourite of mine in the list of nominees is Nintendo Land, the Wii U's technical showcase minigame collection. After playing some of its multiplayer offerings with friends recently, I am now getting frequent messages from those same friends, asking when we're going to play it again. That seems like a good sign.

Sound Shapes for the PS Vita was an oddball that I had trouble fitting into a category. It is kind of a platformer, but seeing how much music and rhythm is integrated into the action makes it feel like more of a rhythm game, hence its inclusion here. Whatever box you stick it in, it is a beautiful game featuring toe-tapping music and great visuals.

Another favourite among the Screen Play crowd was 3DS title Final Fantasy Theaterhythm, a strange hybrid of Japanese RPG and music game. Characters get into battles, and you have to tape and slide your stylus across the touch screen in time with the stirring Final Fantasy musical score to deliver killing blows. It's strange, but incredibly addictive.

Harmonix, creators of Guitar Hero and Rock Band, were back in 2012 with two new games. The first was their cut-down version of Rock band, played using a regular controller, called Rock Band Blitz. They also released a new edition of their consistently excellent Kinect exclusive dance franchise, Dance Central 3. Ubisoft also released a new edition of their motion-controlled dance series, Just Dance 4.


Now it's time to vote. Everyone can vote only once, for a single game, and you can type your own title into the "other" field if I have left out your favourite. Results are going to be revealed tomorrow, with the winning game entered in our Game of the Year poll. in the meantime, you can discuss your votes in the comments here.

Thanks for participating.

 - James "DexX" Dominguez

twitter DexX is on Twitter: @jamesjdominguez