Sigma Harmonics

Sigma Harmonics (シグマ・ハーモニクス, Shiguma Hāmonikusu) is a role-playing video game developed and produced by Square Enix for the Nintendo DS handheld game console.[2] The game involves two friends who travel through time, attempting to restore an altered past and solve murders along the way.

Sigma Harmonics
Sigma Harmonics.jpg
Developer(s)Square Enix
Think Garage
Publisher(s)Square Enix
Director(s)Hiroki Chiba
Producer(s)Yoshinori Kitase
Artist(s)Yusaku Nakaaki
Writer(s)Hiroki Chiba
Composer(s)Masashi Hamauzu
Platform(s)Nintendo DS
Release
Genre(s)Role-playing video game
Mode(s)Single-player

GameplayEdit

The game is played using the Nintendo DS system's "book" orientation. Solving one chapter's case changes the past, which leads to a new murder. The game is told through a series of illustrations like a book.[3] The game features random battles but is told in a mystery story format.[4] Neon does the fighting against enemies in the game, and can become a sharpshooter, knight, and other jobs.[5] If players solve a mystery through guessing or illogical means, their boss battles become more difficult as the boss becomes stronger and the player becomes weaker.[4]

PlotEdit

The story revolves around Sigma Kurogami, a high school student and "sound user" whose family guards a huge clock sealing off the demon Ōma. One day, his past is rewritten, causing chaos in his present. He then works with his friend Neon Tsukiyumi to solve an increasingly complex string of murder cases and return his life to normal. They use Sigma's abilities and the clock to go through time, and as each murder is solved, the future changes and unlocks a new history with other crimes to solve.[3]

CharactersEdit

Characters include Sigma Kurogami (黒上 シグマ, Kurogami Shiguma) (voiced by Daisuke Ono), Ōma (逢魔), and Neon Tsukiyumi (月弓 ネオン, Tsukiyumi Neon) (voiced by Aya Hirano). Sigma has the ability to cause miracles with the sound of his voice, a hereditary family trait.[3] Neon is part of a clan of "card wielders" that have fought against the Ouma, and also possess the power to change forms through meditation.[5]

DevelopmentEdit

Sigma Harmonics was first revealed as one of the trademarks registered by Square Enix.[6] The game was developed by Think Garage, which had developed two titles in the Itadaki Street series and Lord of Vermillion. Key members of the development team previously collaborated on Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII.[7] The game was produced by Yoshinori Kitase and directed by Hiroki Chiba, respectively the co-director and co-event planner of Chrono Trigger. Chiba was inspired by Shōwa period writers such as Seishi Yokomizo and Rampo Edogawa, and wanted to create a video game with a similar vibe.[7] The game features character designs by Yusaku Nakaaki. Chiba admired Nakaaki's previous illustrations and recommended him to Kitase, stating "not using Nakaaki's drawings would be a horrible waste [even though] there are lots of awesome designers at Square Enix."[7] The game was playable at the DKΣ3713 gaming event in June 2008.[8]

MusicEdit

The game's soundtrack was composed by Masashi Hamauzu,[9] who provided music for Final Fantasy XIII, SaGa Frontier II, Final Fantasy X, Unlimited Saga and Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII. The original soundtrack was released in September 24, 2008 in Japan and covers 37 tracks. The theme song "Harmonia vita" was written by Aki Hata[10] and performed by character voice of Neon Tsukiyumi, Aya Hirano. The illustration, which was painted the protagonist Sigma Kurogami, was designed by game's character designer Yusaku Nakaaki.[11] Square Enix Music scored the album 9/10.[12]

All music is composed by Masashi Hamauzu.

Sigma Harmonics Original Soundtrack
No.TitleLength
1."One More Tomorrow" (もう1つの明日)0:58
2."Rippling Dream" (さざなむ夢)2:24
3."The Remains of Time" (時の残滓)2:51
4."Black Guidance" (黒き導き)0:10
5."Flowing Time" (流れし刻)2:40
6."Wandering the Interval" (狭間を流離う)2:32
7."Gentle Timbre" (穏やかな音色)2:08
8."Approaching Abyss" (近づく深淵)1:49
9."Hope Given "Dance of the Dog's Howl"" (希望与えし「戌吠の神楽」)2:34
10."Seal Complete" (封印完了)1:23
11."Twisted Nightmare" (歪んだ悪夢)0:06
12."A Man Stabbed by Evil" (魔を刺されし人)0:56
13."Bright Invitation "Dance of the Iron Ox"" (光り誘う「鐵牛の神楽」)2:37
14."Possession" (神降ろし)1:40
15."Corroding Darkness" (浸食する闇)1:20
16."Spun Time" (紡がれる時)0:35
17."Heartening "Dance of the Cornered Rat"" (心奮わす「窮鼠の神楽」)2:43
18."Expressing "Dance of the Great Snake"" (表出せしは「大蛇の神楽」)0:52
19."Men's Shaped Regret" (人の形作りし恨み)0:59
20."Calling Triple Claw" (呼び求める三重爪)0:54
21."Eternity's End "Dance of the Wild Boar"" (悠久の果て「山鯨の神楽」)0:44
22."Peace Unmade "Dance of the Swan"" (安寧在らざる「白鳥の神楽」)0:45
23."Invading "Dance of the Youthful Horse"" (侵攻せしめし「若駒の神楽」)0:39
24."Beginning from the Dark Dream "Dance of the Sheep God"" (暗夢より始まる「羊神の神楽」)0:36
25."Slowly Progressing "Dance of the Orangutan"" (緩り進みし「猩々の神楽」)0:38
26."The Whole World "Dance of the Beast King"" (天上天牙「獣王の神楽」)0:47
27."It May Be Bright "Dance of the Dragon God"" (麗らかなるかな「龍神の神楽」)0:56
28."The Hope Beyond Fear" (恐怖の先にある希望)0:51
29."Watcher of the Time of Disasters" (逢魔が時に視るもの)2:42
30."That Play "Demon Sonata"" (其が奏でるは「魔奏曲」)2:01
31."Tears of Sorrow" (悲涙)1:06
32."Words Were Shaken" (言の葉は揺すられた)1:41
33."Guidance to the Ultimate "Dance of the Moon Spirit"8" (終極へ導くは「月精の神楽」)2:48
34."The Screams of Time Rotating" (転回せしめるは時の悲鳴)2:14
35."Who is He Anyway 2:20" (彼の者は誰時に)2:20
36."Visiting Time Before Long" (やがて訪れる時)2:24
37."Harmonia vita (SigmaMix)" (Harmonia vita (SIGMA Mix) (Vocals: Aya Hirano))3:37
Total length:59:00

ReceptionEdit

Sigma Harmonics debuted on the Japanese sales charts at number 8, selling 23,000 units.[13] As of September 30, 2008, the game has sold 70,000 copies in Japan.[14] Famitsu gave the game a score of 31 out of 40, with grades of 8,8,7,8.[15] In 2009 Square Enix registered a trademark for "Sigma Harmonics Coda".[16] This became the name of a port of the game to mobile phones only divided into episodic pieces for players to download.[17]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Square Enix (2008). "Sigma Harmonics". Retrieved 2008-05-29.
  2. ^ John Tanaka (March 26, 2008). "New From Square Enix: Sigma Harmonics". IGN. Retrieved March 28, 2013.
  3. ^ a b c JC Fletcher (2008-04-21). "Investigating Square Enix's adventure RPG, Sigma Harmonics". Joystiq. Retrieved 2013-04-14.
  4. ^ a b Spencer (August 25, 2008). "Sigma Harmonics: A journey of songs, cards, and time traveling homicides". Siliconera. Retrieved April 14, 2013.
  5. ^ a b Sachi Coxon (2008-08-21). "Items of Import: Sigma Harmonics preview". Joystiq. Retrieved 2013-04-14.
  6. ^ Spencer (2008-02-17). "Crystal Chronicles WiiWare trademarked? Namco Bandai battle ghosts? Ubisoft goes Jurassic?". siliconera.com. Retrieved 2008-03-27.
  7. ^ a b c Emily Balistrieri (April 7, 2008). "Famitsu Interviews Sigma Harmonics Devs". 1UP.com. Retrieved March 28, 2013.
  8. ^ JC Fletcher (2008-06-19). "Kingdom Hearts, Sigma Harmonics playable at Square Enix event". Joystiq. Retrieved 2013-04-14.
  9. ^ Jérémie (March 27, 2008). "Sigma Harmonics pour Hamauzu". Retrieved March 28, 2013.
  10. ^ "Game Music :: Sigma Harmonics Original Soundtrack :: Album Information". Squareenixmusic.com. 2008-09-24. Retrieved 2013-04-06.
  11. ^ 『シグマ ハーモニクス』のオリジナルサントラが9月24日に発売! - 電撃オンライン (in Japanese). News.dengeki.com. 2008-08-27. Retrieved 2013-04-06.
  12. ^ "Game Music :: Sigma Harmonics Original Soundtrack :: Review by Katchum". Squareenixmusic.com. 2008-09-24. Retrieved 2013-04-06.
  13. ^ David Jenkins (August 28, 2008). "Japanese Charts: Soccer Releases Dominate In Slow Week". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2009-04-14.
  14. ^ "Results Briefing Session: The First-Half of the Fiscal Year ending March 31, 2009" (PDF). Square-Enix.com. Retrieved March 28, 2013.
  15. ^ Riley, Adam (August 6, 2008). "Level-5's New Nintendo DS RPG Highly Rated by Famitsu". Cubed3.com. Retrieved March 4, 2009.
  16. ^ Spencer (2009-09-02). "Sigma Harmonics Coda Sounds Like A Square Enix Sequel". Siliconera. Retrieved 2013-04-14.
  17. ^ Spencer (2010-01-31). "Sigma Harmonics Coda Is A Cell Phone Port". Siliconera. Retrieved 2013-04-14.

External linksEdit