'Tap Tap Revenge' Takes iPhone Gaming to the Next Level


Hoping to buck music gaming’s downward trajectory, free mobile app Tap Tap Revenge 4 is getting the party started, effectively immediately, on the iPhone and iPod Touch. Beyond playable tracks by Cee Lo (“Forget You”), My Chemical Romance (“Welcome to the Black Parade”) and Linkin Park (“Crawling”), it also offers integration with Apple’s Game Center and extensive social networking features.

Enhancements include a new arcade mode, high-resolution graphics for the iPhone 4’s Retina Display and support for challenging rivals or trading scores over Facebook, Twitter or email. An in-game “Like” button is also offered for individual tracks, so users can monitor each others’ avatars and compare musical tastes. Tapping in time with colored on-screen prompts to over 100 free songs or dozens of optional paid 99-cent downloads, the title also offers dedicated indie channels featuring Epitaph and Vagrant Records acts. Artist- and genre-specific track bundles are also available starting at $1.99. From dance (Chromeo’s “Forget You”) to pop (Katy Perry’s “Firework”) and hip-hop (Nicki Minaj’s “Your Love”), dozens of songs and styles take top billing.

Despite extensive play and online shopping options, critics debate whether the series, which has garnered over 40 million downloads and was recently sold to Disney, can continue its chart-topping streak. Current music video game sales are fraction of their 2008 peak, while more technically advanced titles like Infinity Blade and Rage HD, which resemble those found on set-top consoles, are increasingly dominating public mindshare.

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