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S&S; Reviews: Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure

Posted on the 08 August 2012 by Sameo452005 @iSamKulii
S&S; Reviews: Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure

Title: Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure

Format: Nintendo 3DS
Release Date: July 10, 2012
Publisher: Sega
Developer: Xeen
Price: $29.99
ESRB Rating: E10+

Perhaps owing no less than a great debt to the likes of Tintin and Lupin the Third, Sega's Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure bursts onto the 3DS heralded by the fanfare of previous rhythm game Theatrhythm Final Fantasy. The game stars a young orphan and his friendly canine companion. We follow their adventures as the mystery surrounding the boy's father's disappearance is unraveled. The story is quick and compelling set against a coloful backdrop of Paris. The music serenades us with catchy melodies and classical inspriation. The gameplay features a wide range of modes to master. Overall, this is perhaps one of Sega's more inspired games and stands up well against legacy such as Space Channel Five.

S&S; Reviews: Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure
Story / Presentation
The story centers around Raphael and his dog Fondue. Together they venture into the streets of Paris and plunder art galleries as the elusive thief Phantom R. Along the way, we discover that despite what history may tell us: Napoleon Bonaparte is alive and well! The emperor serves as a villain and is bent on reclaiming the city of Paris. The characters may be tropes, but the story is told in such a way that the gamer is rocketed through a Saturday morning anime offering.
S&S; Reviews: Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure
The character models are very well detailed, cartoony and stylish. The setting of Paris is beautiful. You feel as though you are guiding Raphael and Fondue through postcards. There are prerendered scenes of art that captures the French metropolis very well. In these moments, the game effects a bit of Phonix Wright. The gameplay compels you to keep your eyes on the slightest of details. So with the actual loook and feel, you won't feel like the tasks are tedious or a strain on the eyes.
S&S; Reviews: Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure
Music and Sound
You can actually hum along to the main theme of Rhythm Thief. While that may not seem like the highest compliment, I would argue that not many games have theme songs you can hum. Of course as a rhythm game, Rhythm Thief's main focus is on music and the collaboration the player does in performing the pieces. I found that in contrast to a game like Theatrhythm: Final Fantasy, the audio cues were more significant than the graphical cues. If you cannot follow along with the music, you will perform poorly and the game's score, musically and gameplay-wise, will reflect that.
S&S; Reviews: Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure
Core Gameplay
The gameplay of Rhythm Thief is varied as opposed to a game like Theatrhythm that essentially has only three modes of gameplay at different levels of difficulty. Rhythm Thief asks the player to perform in game using the face buttons, touch screen, and gyroscope. You will slide your stylus across the screen to keep in time with NPC dancers. You will platform across the Paris rooftops to escape the long arm of the law. One of my personal favorite modes involves tapping the face buttons in quick succession to fend off the forces of Napoleon's army. It was a bit like Punch Out. The game's true references kick in with mini-games that require you to swing the 3DS Samba De amigo style. As I said in the graphics section, you have to hunt around Paris for treasure and you do spend a lot of time mindlessly tapping around the urban landscape. At first, this mode is a little tedious, however, as the game progresses you don't mind poking around the touch screen.
S&S; Reviews: Rhythm Thief & the Emperor's Treasure
Final Thoughts
Rhythm Thief is a game that will stand alongside Sega classics such as Space Channel Five and Samba De Amigo. With a variety of mini-games, catchy melody-laden soundtrack, and beautiful cityscapes, this is the game that makes you ask for a sequel.
S&S Rating: 9/10

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