First published on 20 Jul 2012. Updated on 3 Mar 2014.
The Tap Tap series of 25-plus titles has grossed US$35 million for Disney-owned game developer Tapulous. The basic gameplay of a catchy tune and an interactive, Guitar Hero-esque interface to tap along with it, has proved lucrative and addictive (it’s certainly kept our thumbs red and tender). The latest game in the series, Tap Tap Revenge: Tour, brings some much-needed polish to the title, streamlining the experience and rewarding loyal fans of the thumb-thump, king-of-the-rhythm genre on mobile. And it’s free!
The big draw-card to the game are the songs and the artists it attracts. The list includes, but is not limited to, Katy Perry, Carly Rae Jepsen, LMFAO, Flo Rida, Metallica and Skillex. Tap Tap has proven to be a great partner to the record industry and there’s no shortage of new songs or packs each day to purchase in-game (with money or hard-earned in-game credit).
Tour adds some much needed context to mashing your phone with your thumbs. As the name suggests, you’re on “tour” this time around, travelling around the world playing sets of songs for a high score, some virtual loot and a crowd. Your shows are real-time and you’re encouraged to whip out Tour once a day – no rec days on this tour, Ms Perry – to complete three songs and potentially two encores. This scheme ensures players who play regularly are rewarded with high scores, and, most importantly, furnishings for your green room (instruments, signs, record sleeves and more).
Your virtual audiences are unlikely to bring you back each day, but the promise of a daily free song from Tapulous is very enticing and is part of the year-long roadmap of ongoing content that the developers have in store for the game. Still, it must be said it’s often a bit of a slog to get through a single day of touring (20 minutes or more), especially if you dabble with some of the harder difficulties.
Overall. the best update is the streamlined interface. Past Tap Tap menus missed the intuitive nature that made the gameplay so fun. Slow interfaces and overloaded menus sputtered between songs, leaving users hanging or confused. Tour deals with this by producing a detailed but balanced interface that borrows a sketch-book styling, seen previously in console titles like SXX on Tour and Guitar Hero.
If anything hampers the game it is the occasional download problem, which can you leave you hanging in the wings, periodically, so it’s worth doing your initial gig on a WiFi network so you can download the tracks with little trouble. Overall, though, Tap Tap Revenge: Tour is an excellent, addictive little (free) title that demands your attention and rewards it with free content. The substantial detail in the interface rewards fans and ensures all the best casual fun on your mobile. Yep, even more reason never to to talk to those real peoples.