Developer: Synaptic Stuff
Price: FREE
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad Mini

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★★½

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

Jamming out on Guitar Hero is my type of fun and Piano Genius offers a similar style of play. Players are in front of a piano and must push and hold every key at the right moment to make a song sound the way it’s meant to be heard. It also helps with the scoring because players are scored poorly if they only press a key that is meant to be held. The app is free-to-play and features three classic songs, including Canon In D and Fur Elise by Johann Pachelbel and Moonlight Sonata by Ludwig Van Beethoven. Additional songs, including piano versions of current songs, can be purchased through in-app purchase.

I love and appreciate music, especially the piano, even though I’ve never played it before. I had a lot of learning to do when it came time to rock out to Beethoven. The beginning of Fur Elise by Beethoven is difficult to learn even with the game showing the player the falling dots, indicating precisely when and where they must push the keys. I purposely repeated only the beginning of Fur Elise until I had it right, that’s how well I wanted to perform on this app. This is a learning process for those who are not familiar with the piano, but it’s totally worth it once players learn a song. It’s exciting having everything come together perfectly for the first time and to watch the score get higher on the leaderboards, showing the player that they are doing well.

Piano Genius has a guided mode that goes through every key of every song with the player until they get it right. Afterwards, they’ll unlock Performance mode for open playing and challenging high scores. Also, within each mode, the game features a left and right handed option to play in each mode, making the game much easier to handle instead of trying to cover the entire piano.

There are moments where the screen quickly moves along the keyboard to display keys further down the piano. This is slightly annoying and sometimes problematic because it happens too quickly, causing the player to push the wrong key on the next display because the screen moves before they can push the correct key.

When players learn a song on Piano Genius, they’ll be able to better understand and play on a real piano. The app acts like a teaching tool in that manner. I had no piano skills prior to playing this game, but I am now able to jump on an actual piano and play segments of the same songs on there. It’s fun to be able to do that, though I still wish I had the green dots to help.

Piano Genius is not as exciting as Guitar Hero, but after a while it becomes just as addicting and is a lot of fun.

Posted in: iPad Apps and Games, iPhone Apps and Games, Music, Reviews

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