While most attention on rhythm/music gaming in Japan is soaked up by Konami, that doesn’t stop other developers there from trying their hand at it. Sega has titles like Project DIVA and MaiMai; Taito has Groove Coaster and Music GunGun; Namco has Taiko No Tatsujin.
Now Bandai Namco can add something new to the list, assuming it passes location testing, called Synchronica. As a touchscreen rhythm arcade game it shares similarites with Konami’s Beatstream and Step Revolution’s ReRave Plus.
According to the official website for the game, the featured music includes J-Pop and a few other genres, including some video game soundtrack music. One is called “Eat ‘Em Up! R4 Ridge Racer Type 4”.
The cabinet pairs a couple of screens together for the cabinet and as you can see, a unique speaker setup which reminds me of Sega’s old Soundwave audio system. As you can see above, the play is similar to ReRave although perhaps with less emphasis on positional accuracy. Overall from this footage they are not focusing on hardcore touch-11-notes-at-once-using-10-fingers play but something that looks more pleasing to casual players. Although I am sure they have a more challenging mode(s) to make the dedicated rhythm game fans happy.
It is unlikely that this will get official distribution in the West however if Namco did want to jump into the genre here then I imagine they would go about it using a more casual friendly design like this. What are your thoughts about it?