yellownumber5's Dyad (PlayStation Network (PS3)) review

Do not play if you have epilepsy!

There have been several games over the course of gaming history to mix flashy visuals in a shooter environment, and in that Dyad is no different. Also, not unlike trippy shooters that have come before, Dyad goes deeper by adding a progressive play style that is constantly expanding its core elements and offers new strategies and challenges with each level. So if that is your thing you can stop reading right here, for Dyad offers this and does very well on delivering that brain-melting spectacle of colors splashing on the screen. If it is not your thing, Dyad will probably drive you mad and cause you to start having migraines followed by disorientation and seizures.

Dyad borrows from elements in past games, but puts it together in a package that well put together, very deliberately paced, and satisfying for all skill levels. Its core concepts are fairly simple. You travel down a straight tunnel in which you rotate around the circumference of the tunnel (see Torus Trooper). As you move along the tunnel you encounter "enemies", which are variations on glowing orbs. You tag these orbs (see Rez), the game calls it "hook", with the x button. The game focuses on getting pairs of the same color to boost yourself faster through the tunnel. All the meanwhile you must avoid colliding with the enemies, or you risk loosing time, speed, and/or energy. In short, move left/right, shoot/dodge.

This basic concept expands from there, adding in abilities like "lancing", in which you turn into a projectile that destroys the enemies; "zip-lining", in which you hook enemies and ride a zip-line (which looks kinda like a road or highway) to gain speed; and invincibility, which protects you from collisions. These extra concepts may not seem like much of an addition, but over Dyad's 26 levels, it constantly mixes up how these abilities are combined and offers different objectives, such as time trials or lancing the most enemies, that keep the game play fresh through to the end.

It does not take long to beat the main game's 26 levels, took me maybe 4-5 hours, but you are well rewarded. The final level unlocked is more of an experience than a game. It uses all the flashy visual technology to its fullest, and once again, if that is your thing, you'll be pleasurably lost in a trance that will make you wonder if your mind is slowly being reprogrammed to serve some high-tech master.

I am an aging gamer who's reflexes have waned over the years, and usually find shooters now days to be frustrating. But I miss how that rush and adrenaline feels when one is "in the zone" and completely fixated on the intensity of a game. This game brought that back a bit, and that says a lot since most games like this tend to frustrate me out of difficulty by their speed and accuracy. That's not to say that Dyad is easy, by all means some of the challenges seem near-impossible. But something about the flow of Dyad gets one lost and entranced by it, and once that happens it sucks you in and makes you focus. Now I don't expect this to happen to everybody. For many the flashiness might be too much, and the noise and music can be overwhelming sometimes like standing on the floor of a Vegas casino with a really bad hangover. So in conclusion, like I said before, if it is your thing, go for it, loose yourself in it for a little while. If its not your thing, do not punish yourself.


Other reviews for Dyad (PlayStation Network (PS3))

    An Incredible Trip 0

    Dyad is not your conventional game. It takes a lot of the best elements of games like Rez and Audiosurf, and makes them work in a way that I have not experienced in any other game like it. Especially coming from a development team of two people (with only one making the core gameplay). What makes Dyad work is that it is immersive enough to sit down for hours and play at a time, but also structured for quick pick up and play. Ultimately, this is a game about chasing leaderboard rankings. And what...

    2 out of 2 found this review helpful.

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