Game Music, Indie Music, Reviews

Emotion Meets Music: Ephemerid A Musical Adventure (Review)

July 11, 2015 | | Comment? Share thison Facebook Emotion Meets Music: Ephemerid A Musical Adventure (Review)on Twitter

Ephemerid: A Musical Adventure is a single touch musical adventure game available on Steam, and additional mobile platforms . I finally had the opportunity to experience the game this past weekend and can say that the positive reviews for the game around the web are accurate.

The game’s creators Super Chop Games describe the game as follows:  “Ephemerid is a rock fairy tale about a paper mayfly. Lean back, relax and enjoy it as a whole, as you would a favorite album. ”

In the review I look at the game’s use of music and how it guides the player through its story and delivers a series of emotional impacts. If you have not had a chance to experience Ephemerid: A Musical Adventure come read why you should.

Ephemerid plays like a storybook reads but with a stunning soundtrack rather than narration.  The visual design of the game reminded me of the children’s book The Very Hungry Caterpillar and playing with construction paper (the good old days).   The game begins by placing the player in front of a pile of leaves that you have to touch and move around to reveal the game’s title one letter and piano note at a time.  After the title is revealed the game repeats piano melody slowly and relaxingly as if to welcome to you to the overall experience.   The music continues to guide you as you begin to touch the screen and guide your character a paper mayfly though the levels.

The game does encourage you to use rhythm to follow along and interact with levels, but if you’re not rhythmically inclined the game does not penalize you as there is no scoreboard.  The better rhythm you demonstrate during gameplay the more the game reveals it’s beauty to you.

The game contains a variety of levels with some light puzzling solving, and quick movement moments such as the image above where you attempt to save bugs stuck on a spider’s web before they are eaten.  There are also times where as a player you’ll experience some pure joys at the music and visuals have you thrusting through nature, and guiding shooting stars to create fireworks in the sky.  You’ll also feel for your character as they find a companion in the form of a another mayfly only to be separated and having to fight for your own survival.

The game runs short at just under an hour, but it’s quality of over quantity.  You can stop the game at any time and resume play at whichever chapter you left off at.  If you pause the game you can see your progress in the form of a pie charted vinyl record that has images of the levels.  The vinyl level presentation also will encourage you to replay the game as the music will guide you back to the beginning from the credits and you may not even realize you’re starting over, another sign of great design. I played the game from my couch as my PC is hooked up to my TV.  I found that using the wireless mouse at times it was difficult to in some levels to sync to the rhythm.  I think that the experience on a mobile device or tablet would be far superior and more immersive as you can use your hands, which is Super Chop Games’ motto after-all.

As for the soundtrack, composer Matt Meyer has created something truly wonderful.  Three tracks are offered free on the Bandcamp page including the welcoming opener “Ephemerid”.   But the whole soundtrack will only set you back $5.00.  You’ll find wonderful use of synth strings, soft piano, and masterful electric guitar.  My favorite track “Spin” plays when you pause the game and the vinyl level menu is displayed.

The game is available now on Steam for $6.49, or you get the version which includes the soundtrack for $9.99.

Have you played Ephemerid? If so how did you play it and do you have a favorite track on the album?

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