About frackin' time news now, with the announcement that tomorrow's Xbox Live Arcade release is none other than Tetsuya Mizuguchi's plummeting block opus, Lumines Live!. Priced at 1200 MS Points ($15), the game features 12 different skins (or levels, for the uninitiated), 5.1 surround sound, online multiplayer, a bevy of single-player modes and a vaguely inspirational message transmitted through pulsating lights and spinning squares. So, what happened to all that stuff you had to buy seperately?
It's called the Advance Pack. An optional download costing 600 MS Points ($7.50) will add 22 more skins into the game -- and that's it. Considering the value of HD graphics and enhanced sound in a game which heavily relies on hypnotic presentation, $22.50 for a new Lumines title with 34 skins doesn't seem like a terrible deal, certainly not to those still addicted to the original game. Of course, not being able to play it on the bus may come as a significant loss to you, not to mention the curious fact that the main game has fewer skins than the add-on.
Stack blocks and defy sweeping timelines (if you're so inclined) on Xbox Live Arcade from Wednesday morning, 1:00AM PDT (0800 GMT). The full press release is embedded after the break.
[Update 1: Now includes interview with Mark Coates, program manager for Xbox Live Arcade.]
[Update 2: The Advance Pack is nowhere to be seen. Major Nelson says it'll arrive at a "later date."]
Video Mark Coates, Program Manager for Xbox Live Arcade, stopped to chat with us about the future of the service and the company's prospects in the upcoming console wars. Then, he kindly challenges us to a Lumines battle.
Special thanks to Andrew, from gamerandy.com. Joystiq's more annoying Andrew also contributed to the video.
Xbox Live Arcade Wednesdays is making some extra noise this week. The highly anticipated music-puzzle action phenomenon, "Lumines Live!" can be yours starting tomorrow, Wednesday, October 18, from 0800 GMT (1:00am PDT) on Xbox Live Arcade. The newest addition to the blockbuster franchise from Tetsuya Mizuguchi and Q Entertainment comes packed with puzzles, modes, exclusive music videos and full online multiplayer play over Xbox Live. The game even has an exclusive feature that records high score gameplay in the Time Attack Mode which can be downloaded and played back by any other player.
"Lumines Live!" combines puzzles, music and video entertainment to create an addictively-fun gameplay experience that looks and sounds as good as it plays. Play several different single player modes, battle friends online over Xbox Live, create your own skins playlist in the all-new Skin Edit Mode, and experience new ways to play via exclusive downloadable content to enhance and extend the gameplay experience.
"Lumines Live!" for Xbox Live Arcade brings exciting new music, new video content, and 12 different skins, for hours of fun. The Xbox Live Arcade game features exclusive Xbox Live online multiplayer play, allowing you to play against your friends in head-to-head battles. For advanced players, gamers can change their music scene and purchase the Advance Pack from Xbox Live Marketplace for 22 new skins.
"Lumines Live!" includes:
* Full online multiplayer play over Xbox Live – battle your friends head-to-head
* Classic Lumines gameplay, including Challenge, Puzzle and vs. CPU modes
* All-new Skin Edit Mode allows you to re-mix the order of your unlocked skins to create a custom Lumines experience
* All-new Mission mode presents player with pre-designed Lumines puzzle scenarios
* Dynamic skins, sound effects and music optimized specifically for Lumines Live! in high-definition graphics and 5.1 channel surround audio
* Extensive downloadable content support over Xbox Live Marketplace – add new skins, puzzles, missions, artist packs and more
* Full suite of online leaderboards
* Achievements and Gamerscore
WHEN CAN I GET IT: Download "Lumines Live!" tomorrow, Wednesday, October 18, at 1am PST on Xbox Live Arcade (available in participating countries).
"Lumines Live!" (Q Entertainment): 1200 Microsoft Points
"Lumines Live!" Advance Pack (sold separately): 600 Microsoft Points