Chime Sharp is the sequel to 2010’s music puzzler Chime, and functions just like the first game. The gameplay and presentation are highly reminiscent of Lumines as well as the father of all block puzzlers, Tetris – except here the shaped puzzle pieces are dragged and slotted in wherever you want them to go as opposed to automatically dropping from above while you frantically rush to drop them in the best spot.
The objective is to rotate and piece the blocks together on the play grid to form 3×3 quads. Once a quad has been activated, it begins to fill up with a self-contained meter. During this time, the quad can be expanded upon, but once the meter fills it becomes inactive, its score value locks in, and the squares on the grid underneath the quad are coloured in.
Chime Sharp’s puzzles are fun with the only challenge being the time you are battling against. Reach your goal by gaining a high score, or by painting the board, both of which are equally fun to do. However, to unlock more songs than the original five you are given, you will have to paint 40% of the board to unlock new songs.
The music within Chime Sharp is beautiful and fits well with what the game offers, every moment from the menu, to the songs you play during your puzzles, the sound effects are on par with the soundtrack. However, an option to add your own songs would be amazing so you could play with whatever songs you have, yet without this ability, the game does feel complete with what it already offers.
Chime Sharp is a relaxing game, which is something I enjoy, the game is very enjoyable and unless you are being timed, there’s no rush – giving you time to sit back and relax. If you start getting bored of playing one game mode, there are plenty of different types of game modes to choose from.
Newcomers to the genre will find Chime Sharp easy to pick up and play it’ll take about 3-5 minutes to get the hang of the controls for the game, even for the uninitiated. The response time of this game is good – there’s no lag or any issue with moving the bricks around, the game’s also very fast and responsive to the action you use.
I did find that not being able to add your own songs is a bit of a pain, as I felt that being able to do this would make the game more unique, maybe this is something they can add on later in the year. Most game modes have a tutorial – except for one when your first load up the game and selected the game mode you wish to play the only tutorial you get are the texts on the screen which isn’t ideal if you wish to spend more time learning about the game.
The unlock process in this game maybe a bit difficult as it doesn’t state clearly what you need to unlock further games modes and levels which can be confusing for some gamers.
Overall I enjoyed the time I spent playing Chime Sharp – it didn’t take long for me to get into a gaming rhythm, helped along by the game’s soundtrack, and found that what were intended to be quick gaming stints became hour long sessions. Chime Sharp will appeal to fans of the genre, as well as newcomers looking to dip their toe in the puzzle game waters.