Lumines Remastered (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Josh Di Falco 26.07.2018

Review for Lumines Remastered on Nintendo Switch

Lumines had been previously released in 2004 for the PlayStation Portable (PSP), and received much fanfare from the critics. With Resonair developing the Remastered version for Nintendo Switch, Lumines Remastered will allow a new generation to get access to what was an addictive variation of Tetris. While this is a simple block-matching game, Lumines does add an extra twist to the blocks themselves, by featuring two different colours that must be matched with other blocks of the same colour. Music, visuals and game mechanics come together to create a beautiful amalgamation on display in what is a worthy addition to the Switch library.

As the block pieces fall from the rafters, eliminating them is as simple as matching the same colours in a two-by-two grid or more. They fall slowly, at first, before getting faster as the challenge wears on, while the background music plays different variations of techno music beats, while the stage themes and aesthetic changes to reflect progression. Making this entire experience even more intense are the vibrations of the Joy-Con, whether played detached from the console, or in handheld mode. Playing with vibration raised to the maximum is really the only way to go about getting the full exhilarating experience from Lumines Remastered.

Screenshot for Lumines Remastered on Nintendo Switch

The gameplay is as addictive as playing Tetris. The simple controls and mechanics makes Lumines easily accessible for anyone to just jump in and begin playing. With the funky music in the background, it does well to set the tone and theme of each stage, while the controls simply focus on rotating the various blocks before they hit the ground. One big change from the expected formula is that instead of having different block shapes, Lumines will only offer a two-by-two block each time, with different coloured variants.

'Challenge' mode is the crux of this pack, where the goal is simply about chasing high scores in this endless-runner type of setting. While reaching the big scores is the carrot-at-the-end-of-the-stick for this mode, 'Challenge' mode is also used to unlock new themes and profile avatars for those who enjoy the customisation aspects of any title. With local and world leaderboards to set a record on for the sole purpose of bragging rights, coupled with the addictive nature of this block-matcher, many hours can be spent for the enjoyment that Lumines brings. This mode will just keep on going until there is no more room for the blocks to fall.

Screenshot for Lumines Remastered on Nintendo Switch

'Time Attack' mode is the exact same challenge - except with the added time to speed up the decision-making and leaving the challenge up to quick-thinking and wit, rather than strategic and calculated decisions. While this mode certainly raises the difficulty due to the pressure of the timer more than anything, it merely serves as an extension of the main mode of play. While it is an expected mode to be featured in these arcade titles, it does not demonstrate the true magic of Lumines.

'Puzzle' and 'Mission' modes are designed for those who love to be intellectually-challenged by block-related tasks. Rather than chasing the high scores in an endless series of falling blocks, instead these two modes focus on setting specific short-term objectives that need to be completed instead. Whether it's asking for a goal to be accomplished in a set number of moves, or to position the falling blocks in a specific way to create a coloured-shape, these modes are designed to stretch the mind in ways that not even Tetris could manage. Do not underestimate these modes. though - they are incredibly difficult from the early stages onwards, and it does require a lot of trial-and-error to understand what shapes will be created from the falling blocks, and how each decision will have a ripple effect on the rest of the grid.

Screenshot for Lumines Remastered on Nintendo Switch

While 'Puzzle' and 'Mission' provide alternative methods of gameplay that are designed to extend the longevity of Lumines Remastered, these modes are not for everyone. Most importantly, though, these modes are not required for those who wish to get the general sense of fun and enjoyment out of this title, as these challenges reward more for thinking ahead, and getting creative with the falling blocks, as opposed to the thrill-seeking score-reaching achievers.

'2P' mode is another expected mode, which pits two players against each other. While they both have two separate grids at first, with a divider in the middle, as the game progresses and scores are being achieved on both sides of the field, the divider will move across to the left or right. As the battle continues, someone's grid will open into a larger space, while the other will lose grid real estate, and must rely on quick thinking rotations and block drops to prevent themselves from losing. While this is a fun experience, at first, it clearly has that 'party' feel for short bursts of gameplay, as the games are over quickly. It seems that long-lasting feuds are not viable in this mode, which is fine for those who are seeking these shorter playthroughs to pass the time. Rather than ticking a checkbox for inclusion, though, this mode doesn't offer any other reasons to play it, as the two-player mode wears thin before too long.

Screenshot for Lumines Remastered on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

Those worried about the simple gameplay and minimal graphical aesthetics will be pleased to know that Lumines Remastered holds up quite well on Nintendo Switch. While the graphics themselves are not as beautiful as they were over a decade ago, the coloured blocks still deliver a certain charm that is compounded by the foot-tapping background music that keeps the experience alive. While Tetris purists may shirk at this block-matching alternative that messes with the formula a little, Lumines is worth a try. Whether it's high scores on the leaderboards, completing strategic challenges, or just filling the void for a couch multiplayer title, Lumines Remastered has something for all lovers of arcade type puzzle games.









C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   


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