Sound Shapes co-creators Jonathan Mak and Shaw-Han Liem recently sat down with the PS Blog to discuss the philosophy behind their game, and how its simplicity and style help it to work both as a quality platformer and an easy-to-use music maker.
Players are given simple tools that instantly produce the building blocks of a song, creating beats seamlessly as objects are placed into the game world. A keyboard riff may drop a laser turret, and adjusting its angle may change the sound. All this is done with the PS Vita's touch controls, making it incredibly easy to craft songs.
"Just put a bunch of fingers on the screen," Liem told the PS Blog, placing three fingers on the Vita's front touchscreen, "and you already have a loop. That took three seconds and you have a drum beat."
Liem says that the main purpose of Sound Shapes is to "demystify music creation," and sees the game as a great jumping off point for gamers who also have an interest in creating music:
As you’re playing through the levels, each game screen is like an instruction manual for how to make that music. It’s like you’re looking at the sheet music as you play the game, but you’re visualizing it differently. As you play, you’re learning how to write music. And once you grasp that concept, you can take it to other music software, drum machines, sequencers...… Those all use the same concepts.
If you need to get up to speed with Sound Shapes, check out the video below, which demos both the creation of a song and the game world born out of it in under two minutes.