Review: Cytus - Musical rhythm to satisfy your iOS devices
The iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch is a great platform for rhythm music games. Licensing issues always make these games difficult because you either pay up, use crappy cheap songs, or make your own. Guitar Hero also gave these games a bad name. (Hey! I liked Guitar Hero, but clones are everywhere.) Now along comes Cytus for iOS...and Android too!
When I Googled "Cytus iPhone" for more information the first hit I found informed me that despite recent rumors, Miley Cyrus did NOT die in a car accident. Oh thank god...
More to the point, I found that this iOS (Universal iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch) rhythm game is based on the DJ Max Techknica games where a 'beat' scan line moves up and down the screen. When this line passes over activated circles (circles are gray before they are active), you tap the screen. Simple. The game mixes up the gameplay by adding circles you hold and dot lines that you swipe your finger along. That's all you need. A good rhythm game has simple mechanics. The fun is tapping it out to the beat of the song. As fast and furious as possible.
Cytus is a very polished iPhone game with a cool blue/white futuristic aesthetic. A clean almost flashy presentation does help make a rhythm game good. Even better, Cytus includes music that fits this type of game perfectly. The 15 fast paced tracks that you can unlock in Cytus are heavily Japanese influenced in various genres. I'm not a big fan of J-pop, but it's kept to a minimum here. Even when it does show up the tracks are still fun to play. No matter how good the core mechanics are, if the music is inappropriate or terrible the game isn't any good (see: OSU!Stream). Thankfully Cytus's music is good. I recommend checking out the Cytus Official Website for YouTube videos of gameplay to get a real understanding of how this game plays and sounds.
As with so many touchscreen games, your fingers can occasionally block your view. However, it should be noted that the game is very forgiving on the timings of your taps. The large window will probably make this game easy for veterans of these types of games (and the multiple max scores on Game Center three days after release illustrate that, good for them). It also can make the game feel not quite right at times, a bit 'off'. Even then the game is worth playing, and maybe at some point they'll update with a harder difficulty with a tighter window. Most people will be fine with the way it plays currently anyway.
I still have to give Groove Coaster my favorite iOS rhythm/music game award (by far) and the top spot on any top 10 list I'd make. Cyrus will have to live with being second best for now, yes even better than Jukebeat (at least on iPhone), and a great alternative to the plethora of Tap Tap Revenge/Guitar Hero/Rock Band style of rhythm games.
[Cytus on iTunes] [Cytus on Google Play]