As I sit here listening to a bootleg rip of the soundtrack for Rez I find myself pining to play it again. Rez is one of those games that is hugely exciting to anyone who's ever seen it, yet such a commercial failure that it never got proper distribution and has no hope of living on. Worse, it's in the netherzone between obsolete hardware and contemporary emulator capabilities, so unless you have a PS2 or the actual Dreamcast with the funky grey market disc to let you play PAL games you can't play it.

The gameplay itself is unremarkable, a simple linear shooter. But the hallucinogenic graphics and fantastic mellow techno soundtrack make this a fantastically engrossing game. The cleverest thing is the way that reactive sounds (shots fired, explosions) are looped in sync into the soundtrack. The graphics are astoundingly beautiful and innovative and the trance vibrator is rumoured to please all the senses.

My favourite thing about Rez is the way the game is like a journey, a relaxing trip that has a bit of challenge but isn't too demanding. I wish there were more games like that.

  2004-03-19 04:57 Z