App Reviewed on: iPhone 5S
Graphics / Sound Rating:
User Interface Rating:
Re-use / Replay Value Rating:
Anyone who likes fireworks, talking cats, handcrafted art, and maybe even Harry Potter will fall into the category of people who will definitely want to seek out this game. Beautifully designed and inspired by artists such as Don Bluth (The Secret of NIMH, An American Tail), Wizards - the Magical Concert is a game that emanates the same feelings of wonder and joy that one may feel as a child watching their first fireworks display.
Though the artwork is without a doubt pretty (and by god does Javie Jr slightly remind me of Harry Potter), the language and dialogue (although comprehensible for the most part) does tend to waffle on at times or go on an altogether random tangent. It’s amusing at times, but it struggles to put this across in the grand scale of things.
Upon beginning the game, there’s the option to choose from three levels of difficulty, Easy, Medium and Hard. After some incredibly long-winded backstory, which is entirely skippable, players are thrown into a prologue/tutorial. I’m not sure if I completely missed something somewhere, but the game didn’t actually give any gameplay instructions at all until the point where I either a) missed, b) failed or c) got a good enough score to warrant further explanation. Toto, Javie Jr’s talking feline companion, only then decided to criticize my actions and tell me what I was supposed to be doing. For a tutorial, it wasn’t awfully helpful.
The controls, once I’d discovered them, were fairly straightforward but slightly frustrating - especially on the iPhone. The aim is to tap the firework as soon as its white tail has almost disappeared, but with my thumbs covering the majority of the screen and the amount of fireworks increasing it was easy to make mistakes. Thus there entailed a lot of restarting from the beginning, simply because the game didn’t seem to save my progress very well. In any case, it works on a three tier scoring system, which portrays the satisfaction of the audience. Scoring either Perfect or Good will keep the satisfaction bar out of the red, but score anything less and it immediately starts depleting rapidly. The more combos scored the better, and a chain of combos will also acquire Starcoins, which can then be traded for goods at the Shop.
Catching those stars whilst concentrating on tapping fireworks is not a particularly easy task; especially since multitasking and I do not get along well. It’s also worth mentioning that the tutorial fails to explain that catching Starcoins requires tilting the phone or tablet to catch them, which I instead learned after a lot of embarrassing trial and error.
Other than these niggles the game itself is fairly entertaining, but the magic does easily wear off after retrying a few times. Perhaps this game is just not my cup of tea, but I don’t think it is something I will be picking up again anytime soon.