Hey guys, it’s Opa again and because I couldn’t find any words to describe Audiosurf I take the description given by Steam: “Audiosurf is a music-adapting puzzle racer where you use your own music to create your own experience.” (taken from the description given on Steam.)
Well yeah, that’s pretty much it for the description. It was developed by Dylan Fitterer and was released at the 15 February 2008.
After I first started the game back in 2009 when I bought it as part of the Steam Summer Sale I was curious about the game. I thought if a game in which I can play every song I like could be good then surely has loads of bugs. But after a short time of playing I realized that it actually runs really nice and smooth.
Basically, all you do in this game is collecting colored blocks from a track generated with your music and I will go into how the program does this later on in the post. The game offers a variety of playable characters in 3 different difficulty settings. Every character has its very special set “moves” but most of them are similar to each other. First of all there’s the “Mono”: With this character you have a track with only 2 Blocks to collect: colorful ones and grey ones. Your goal is (as for the other characters too) to gain as much points as possible. That’s what gives the game a little arcade feel. Back to the Mono, you have 3 lanes at which the Blocks spawn. You should avoid the Grey Blocks because they block your combos. If you get 3 of the colorful Blocks in a row they get destroyed and your score increases.
Then there are the other characters which use many different colored Blocks and you have to align them with the corresponding colors to make them disappear. The “Pointman” is able to pick up blocks to use them later but he can only hold 1 Block at a time. The “Vegas” shuffles the rows and rearranges them. The “Eraser” can erase certain colors in his rows to set chain reaction free to give you a lot of points if used correctly. The “Pusher” is able to (who guessed it?) push blocks, when touched, in adjacent row. The “Double Vision” is the only character to play coop with. This character doesn’t have any other special ability.
The level generator does its work pretty well. The tracks are all generated from the Song you have chosen out of your library. The tracks are shaped after the mood, speed of the song and also change the color depending on the mood of the song. The blocks are mostly on-beat to the song, which I find great for those of us with rythem. At times it could be a little annoying when you have a lot of double bass-drums in your song and the track wobbles around, but well, the tracks are generated after the music and if the music goes BumBumBumBum, then the track does this too. Also the tracks of the game make a, in my opinion, great Audio-Visualizer in the, so called, “Freeride/Visualizer” Mode.
The graphics of this game are minimalistic. There really isn’t much besides the track. Aside from some tunnels, trees and a kraken-like thing at the end, that swallows you. The overall graphical style is a, maybe futuristic neon-glowy glowy-world with changing colors. The transitions between louder and more quiet parts are really nicely done and are accompanied by color changes to reflect the change of the songs mood.
The sound of the game is pretty easily described: It’s your music that plays in the entire game except in the title screen. There are sound effects in the game that play, when you hit blocks but I turned them instantly off because I think they detract from the songs atmosphere.
I love this game. I love the fact that you can play your own music in this game. The tracks are really nicely generated and the color-shifty-thingy when the song changes its mood is cool as hell and looks totally gorgeous. I would recommend this game to everyone who likes listening to music and arcade games because this game combines both of those things. It is available via Steam and costs about 10€ (around 13$). You should definitely try the Demo of this game if you´re not convinced yet. There is a sequel to this game called Audiosurf 2 on Steam Early Access for currently 13€ (around 16$) but I don’t think it is worth that price, at least not in its current status but I’m going to review it in some point of time, when it’s more advanced in development.