★ TouchArcade needs your help. Click here to support us on Patreon.

iPhone: NotABubble - Classic arcade music game

12-21-2010, 08:57 PM
#1
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 3
NotABubble - Classic arcade music game

http://itunes.apple.com/app/notabubble/id405495107?mt=8#



I had an opportunity visit Softcubicle office in Copacabana of Rio de Janeiro back when Notabubble was in its infancy. It was a great trip and Tiskipekka was a generous host. Tiskipekka is an accomplished musician, an artist, a computer programmer and all together great guy. This kind of combination is rarely present in one person. So with great pleasure I now have opportunity to review his game. I might be bit bias, but this game deserves it.

Points of interest
OpenGL rendered graphics so it looks great from ipod to retina to ipad. Traditional arcade scoring, with bonus multipliers.

Music
Tiskipekka has composed music that obviously pays tribute to the classic Japanese console games. It's full blast all the time and in your face. The tiny phone speaker doesn't do it justice. Ear phones are recommended.

In brief
Notabubble is a traditional arcade game with eight levels. At least I think there are eight, I've only reached very beginning of seventh level. In the beginning game is slow and seems trivial and really easy, but don't let it fool you. The first two levels are just warm up for what is coming. Only way to progress is to master the previous levels to near perfection.

Game play
A girl band seems to be stranded in space and are defending their honor by shooting down star shaped notes with bubbles. Star notes are sliding on the top of the screen and then shooting towards the player. For each note a visual cue in form of a star and a slight audio cue is played. To get maximum points girl need to be facing the oncoming star and bubble needs to be shot in rhythm. Surprisingly difficult to do accurately. Shooting is done by tapping in the right direction.


Progression
Levels come in pairs. For each pair there is a new string instrument and a different member of the band. The level pairs are similar in difficulty, but step up from second to third and fourth to fifth is at first really difficult. After you've played enough your hands will start working automatically. So after few levels you have to read score and shoot accurately, but you can't look at what you are shooting or you'll be too slow. It is really an awesome feeling.

Room for improvement
As with all indie games there is room for improvement and I hope Tiskipekka doesn't spend Brazilian summer just surfing. Perhaps more playtime for each level could help the learning curve. More music and perhaps at few different tempos. Some small problems when application is sent and retrieved from background although nothing serious.

I'd also would like to see how accurate I've been instead of just points. For example if I got 90% of the hits I'd be promoted to lead vocals and for 100% to superstar status or something.

Anyway, I hope people will enjoy this game as much as I have. Try to beat my score if you can and say hello to Lady Kong.

Last edited by Lumimies; 12-21-2010 at 09:07 PM. Reason: grammar
12-24-2010, 06:08 AM
#2
Game Impressions

At first I didn't like the game that much, but that was mostly cause I wasn't too good at it . But once I got into it, was hooked and had to get through the whole thing. I liked how the music and action were integrated. As well as how the level of challenge increases quickly.

Music is catchy even with the small speaker and the graphics are nice. The game is impossible to play through in one day though I'm pretty good with other music games. It took me about a week. My highscore 827759 is one to beat.

Positives: Good game play from level 3 up. Catchy tunes. Different graphics. I also like that its not like all the other games I've played. Can't think of another game that it could be copied from.
Negatives: Slow start, need more levels at least two more an the pause button.

Overall I thought it was great!

12-24-2010, 06:19 AM
#3
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 10
promo codes?

are you sharing any promo codes so that a few of us could try it out. the graphics look very retro and if the gameplay is nice and responsive, it would be great.
12-24-2010, 06:32 AM
#4
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 3
codes

Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos_m View Post
are you sharing any promo codes so that a few of us could try it out. the graphics look very retro and if the gameplay is nice and responsive, it would be great.
Hello Carlos, I'll ask Tiskipekka. He sent me a promo code, but I gave it to my daughter. How do the promo codes work? Does he have to pay for them?
12-24-2010, 12:10 PM
#5
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 4,443
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lumimies View Post
Hello Carlos, I'll ask Tiskipekka. He sent me a promo code, but I gave it to my daughter. How do the promo codes work? Does he have to pay for them?
Apple supplies a limited number upon app submission.

Now Playing: Vietnam '65 | .Decluster | BP2Black | Monster Hunter Freedom Unite | Banner Saga | Ultimate General Gettysburg | Papers, Please | SmartGo Kifu | Crowntakers | Brogue | FTL
12-24-2010, 11:09 PM
#6
Joined: Dec 2010
Location: Rio de Janeiro
Posts: 4
Video presentation and message

Hi, this is Pekka. I'm the developer of Notabubble. I have prepared a video for you.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ivslvNcEvfM

Best,
Pekka
12-28-2010, 05:34 PM
#7
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos_m View Post
are you sharing any promo codes so that a few of us could try it out. the graphics look very retro and if the gameplay is nice and responsive, it would be great.
Carlos, did Pekka send you the codes? What do you think. I emailed with Pekka few days ago and he said he is trying to get an update made soon. If you have any input I think he'd be happy to hear it. He is bit of a perfectionist and game aficionado, so he'd like the game to be perfect.

I think the game is very responsive and graphics easily 60 fps as advertised. I have little problem with the timing and maybe I'm too old to learn. I can't seem to be able to get through the eight level.
01-02-2011, 09:07 PM
#8
Joined: Dec 2010
Location: Rio de Janeiro
Posts: 4
Jeah, I sent the promo to carlos. If you have time check it out and give feedback. Currently, I got a freelance coding gig so I'm not working on the update. Also, I was a little bit disappointed with the response so I'm waiting a little bit. I've been concentrating on the coding etc. for the last 4 months so I wasn't actually aware how crowded the app store is. Also the fake reviews and everything so I guess people, especially gamers, are quite suspicious about new releases. Anyway, let's see how it goes...

Best,
PK
01-02-2011, 10:42 PM
#9
Joined: Dec 2010
Location: Rio de Janeiro
Posts: 4
Still, one thing I would like to ask if in any way possible. The name of the game is not NotABubble but Notabubble (as in a musical game) so if it is in any way possible to change the original title of this thread I would appreciate it. Thanks!

Best,
PK
01-11-2011, 12:11 AM
#10
Joined: Dec 2010
Location: Rio de Janeiro
Posts: 4
OK. I got a good feedback from a player so I decided to go ahead and start creating the update. One primary issue was that the levels are too short and there could be more so I'm remixing the songs and putting in more levels + I have a couple of new ideas. Stay tuned.

thanks