Actually, Zubo Is Fun For All Ages

Just last month, Crecente checked out EA's DS rhythm title Zubo, and the verdict of the commenters based on his impressions was that it looks like a "bizarre kids' game." I got to give it a whirl myself yesterday, and I actually find it pretty interesting.

Like Crecente said, it leans heavily on its art style, cool mini-fig style creatures that are really artsy and look vivid and fantastic on the DS. The basic gameplay might lead one to believe it's a kids' title, but since higher difficulty levels advance in complexity, I have to say with cautious optimism that I'd probably enjoy it too.

Particularly, I liked the character designs. Pics of just a few of them, plus printable papercraft (!) after the jump.

Actually, Zubo Is Fun For All Ages

Actually, Zubo Is Fun For All Ages

Actually, Zubo Is Fun For All Ages

Actually, Zubo Is Fun For All Ages

Actually, Zubo Is Fun For All Ages

Actually, Zubo Is Fun For All Ages




As Crecente said:

The stylus-driven game is broken down into a number of themed-worlds, each with it's own team of Zubo that you can befriend through tasks and mini-games to add to your team of three. All said there will be 55 different Zubo in the game and all of them will have unique attacks during combat.

I'm a big Elite Beat Agents nerd, which means I just love to tap the screen whenever circles converge, and that's what Zubo wants you to do. It has some basic RPG elements - different team members have different attributes and thus their individual techniques will be strong against some enemies and weak against others. Pick a character from your team to attack, choose what moves they'll do, and then a silhouette line will start converging on your character as it dance-attacks the enemy. Tap at the right time and the attack is successful.

The reps brought headphones so that I could hear the music that Crecente didn't get a chance to hear too closely during his demo, and it's all pretty interesting, various stuff all synchronized to beat well. And the gameplay does sync up with the beat, meaning like with EBA, you'll need to use your ears more than your eyes to time things ideally.

It's not, admittedly, as fast or frenetic looking as you might expect a challenging rhythm game to be, but the music and visual style are entertaining enough that it just might close that gap. I'd advise not writing this one off as a kids' game just yet.