Some news has surfaced about PixelJunk 4AM, the upcoming DJ/rhythm game for the Playstation Move. The article in Shacknews revealed the release date (May 15th), and elaborated on some of the gameplay details. I have also exchanged some e-mails with Rowan Parker, the lead developer for the game, who has elaborated on the details. With his permission, I have shared the e-mail in my article.
Originally called PixelJunk lifelike, PixelJunk 4am finally has a release date: May 15th. The app will be available in two flavors: a full release, and a free viewer that allows you to watch–but not create–live performances.
If you just like to listen and watch, 4am also functions as a standalone music visualizer for music stored on your PS3′s hard drive. “You won’t even need a Move if you just want to fire up and run a playlist to the visuals,” the PlayStation.Blog notes. While you won’t need to play to enjoy the app, you’ll need to if you want to unlock some of the “rarer visualizers.”
You may have read my recent article about PixelJunk 4AM, wherein I explored the information available on the game, and made some speculations based on my impressions of the game and other games in the rhythm / DJ genre. Well, soon after that, I was contacted by Rowan, the lead developer for the game. He provided a lot of information about the game, and addressed pretty much all of the concerns I had about the title:
Heya Keith, ^^/
Thanks for the cool article on 4am. That picture made me laugh! I saw a few questions in your article that I wanted to answer, but thought it better to mail you than spam your comments section.
–The sample set available per song is quite wide. You actually have 8 samples per colour per song (32 samples), with up to 16 DSP filter effects that you can apply at any time.
–Songs can certainly be changed on the fly! In fact, when you change songs, it seamlessly moves to a new palette and lets you slowly blend into the next track so you don’t ruin whatever you’d been building (we wanted to capture how DJ’s always blend the back-half of their last song with the front-half of the next). There is a variety of different events to be unlocked that contain different song and visualiser sets, each with their own theme.
–In the PS Blog video, I only showed some of the basic controls, but there is quite a bit more. In particular, you can even dub Baiyon’s samples from the same track into their own layer, creating new compositions with them that he originally unintended.
–We’ve been doing a number of club and DJ events around the world since development started, and as you’d expect Baiyon doesn’t DJ a full 2-4 hours with 4am. He usually mixes into the PS3 live during his set and plays with 4am for 20-30mins or so as a feature point. Some of the crowd often don’t even know that he’s playing with purely 4am in those sections. They just love the cool visuals projected on stage and that he’s waving a glowing stick.
If you have any other questions, feel free to mail me here. Thanks again Keith!
It sounds like there are a lot of features in place to ensure diverse and dynamic music, which is essential for realistic DJing. I’m reassured that it could really stand out as a party / music creation game, and I’m excited to play it for myself.