Game Review: Project Mirai DX

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As many of you know, I’m a total fangirl for both Hatsune Miku and rhythm games. So when Project Mirai DX came out, of course I had to pick up a copy! Going into this, I had some fairly high expectations for the game. I’ve played a few of the previous Project Diva titles and loved every minute of them.  However, Project Mirai DX was even more amazing than I expected!

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Miku’s daily fortune: daikichi, which means great luck!

In addition to the standard rhythm game aspects, Project Mirai has a world of experiences to enjoy the Vocaloid fandom and music. Just like in the Project Diva games, you can change characters’ oufits and decorate their homes. You can also customize the outfits, edit music videos and songs, play mini-games, and interact with your favorite characters in Hang Out Mode. (Think Nintendogs, but with chibi Vocaloid!)

The Product

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Not pictured: The outer packaging, because it’s sad and wrinkled after my dog sat on it.

One of the nifty things about the Vocaloid games is that they usually come with some collectible extras, at least for the Japan releases. Project Mirai DX includes a pack of double-sided AR cards (more about that later), and a wallet chain that looks like the one on Miku’s default outfit. The wallet chain is only part of the launch special edition, so make sure to pick up the game soon if you want it!

The Rhythm Game
12188953_1029333287087552_8045019712844349188_nMiku’s dorky dancing in the PIANO*GIRL video gives me life.

The main part of Project Mirai DX is a standard Japanese-style rhythm game. Because the 3DS features a touch screen, you actually get a choice of playing with the buttons (like in Project Diva), or with the stylus. Each song has three modes. The Hard difficulty level becomes unlocked for each song after beating that song at Normal level.

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Button Mode is the most similar to the original Project Diva gameplay. Tap the correct button just as the circle matches the button prompt to get a Cool rating for that note. The further off your timing, the lower your rate- there’s Cool, Fine, Safe, Sad, and Miss. You can get great bonuses by chaining notes at Cool or Fine rank to create combos!

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Tap Mode gameplay prompts the player with different stylus activity. Tap and hold the stylus as prompted to hit the right notes. As with button mode, the more accurate your timing, the higher the rank for each note or prompt. On slider/hold notes, you can get a spin bonus by twirling your stylus until the hold prompt ends.

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Miku’s hair seems a little unsettling like this… ( ⚆ _ ⚆ )

The game features some of the more popular songs from previous Project Diva games, for example, World is Mine and Kokoro. Even more exciting, they’ve brought in previously unused songs (like Do Re Mi Fa Rondo), and those that were previously only available as DLC (such as Hello, Planet). All songs, even those featured in previous games, have been remixed uniquely for Project Mirai DX.

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I guess it’s a little silly, but I like to get S rank on every song at each difficulty level, before moving onto the next. 

Each time you successfully complete a song, the game awards you Mirai Points, which you can use to purchase various in-game items. These items range from character costumes, to home decorations, to delicious snacks you can share with Miku and friends. In Hangout Mode, you can also give an allowance to each Vocaloid, that they use for snacks and amusement while you’re away.

Hang Out Mode

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Enjoying some quality time with Meiko!

This mode is similar to the DIVA Room mode in Project Diva ƒ- it’s the player’s chance to interact with Vocaloid characters in-game. You can give them snacks, watch them goof around, and talk to them. Something about the chibi-fied character designs just makes it even cuter.

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Luka enjoying some delicious sake nigiri.

On the third floor of Mirai Mall, you can purchase snacks for your friends. Each Vocaloid has different preferences for food and drinks, so make sure you get something they like!

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Miku’s adorable gloating after she defeated me in Mikuversi.

A sweet new feature in Project Mirai DX is the introduction of two mini games you can play with your Vocaloid pals: Mikuversi and PuyoPuyo39.
Mikuversi is a slightly enhanced version of the game Reversi. Players choose either white or black tiles, and use hopping moves to try covering the entire board in their own color. Whoever has more tiles in their color at the end of the game wins! This version also features some bonus tiles as an opportunity to earn extra points.

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Kaito makes his move.

In PuyoPuyo39, the goal is to match colored blobs (or Puyos) as they fall from above. It’s much the same as Sega’s old game Puyo Pop/ぷよぷよ, except you get to play with Vocaloid characters this time! The object of the game is to prevent your Puyo field from filling up, while simultaneously using combos to fill up your opponent’s field.

Costumes and Customization

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Snow Miku, one of many fun outfits in the game!

While all of the previous Vocaloid games have featured a great many outfit options, Project Mirai takes this to a whole new level.
After you purchase an outfit at Mirai Department Store, you can equip it to its appropriate character. After that, there’s even an option to customize the outfit! Customization uses a slider as well as some pre-mixed color options to change the trim and accent color on each outfit. Some of these are more obvious than others.

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Changing the color on Miku’s Electric Love outfit.

Additionally, after you purchase an outfit, you get the option to put it on in the rhythm game. Choosing “character options” before going into a song lets you equip new outfits for each character in stylus, button, or theater mode. In songs that feature more than one character, you can change outfits for everyone!

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Okay, Rin and Len’s Adolescence looks a bit less serious in these costumes…

AR (Altered Reality) Photos

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Double your fun by taking AR pictures with Chibi Nendoroid figures!

A popular mainstay of the Nintendo 3DS, AR cards allow you to interact with your world in fun and different ways, using the 3DS camera and special cards. Project Mirai DX’s AR cards allow you to take photos and view Vocaloid music videos in “real life.” I took some pictures of Gumi and Luka’s Happy Synthesizer performance at my crafting/computer desk. The photos aren’t the clearest in the world, but it’s a cute little feature.

Out and About

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Miku opens a present from Gumi, the ambassador for news and StreePass notifications.

Like most DS titles, Project Mirai DX offers Nintendo’s unique StreetPass feature. This feature lets you collect information, player cards, and remixes from fellow gamers as you pass by them in real life! You can decorate your own player card to send to others as well. Unlock achievements to gather more words and images to use  on your card.

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My StreetPass card! Unfortunately, there’s no screencap option for these. 

Grand Finale

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Miku jamming out on her DJ booth.

Overall, Project Mirai DX is an adorable, well-crafted game, jam packed with fun. I highly recommend this game for any fan of Vocaloid or of rhythm games in general. Beyond the multi-level options for the 48 songs, the remix, theater mode, mini games, and dance options offer fantastic replay value. Plus, it’s just flipping adorable!

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Miku loves you too!

As always, thanks for reading, and don’t forget to like my page on Facebook!