Tidman’s Take: No Longer an Art Style Virgin

Video Feature! I haven’t ever played one of those Art Style games… until now.

By Matthew Tidman. Posted 08/20/2010 12:20 5 Comments     ShareThis

Tidman's TakeSo, this week I decided to do something a little different for my column. Instead of regaling you with endless chatter on Art Style, I took some video of myself playing light trax and provide you with some commentary. Let me know if you’d like to see more video editions of Tidman’s Take in the comments.

5 Responses to “Tidman’s Take: No Longer an Art Style Virgin”

  • 697 points
    Adam Sorice says...

    Great idea of the video feature Tidman, Light Trax looks rather interesting.

    I’ve just no clue how on earth you play it. :P

  • 360 points
    M. Noah Ward says...

    Time for me to step in. Hahaha. You’re always the white beam of light, and that beam– as well as the six others– automatically follow a preset “race track”. The only navigation you can affect is which invisible “lane” you’re moving along on the track.

    To gain boost, you have to keep your light beam directly next to another light beam, and you “draft” energy from them that can be expended as a boost. Once you reach first place, though, you can no longer draft boost energy from opponents, so you have to be very careful to not let them pass you up at the last minute.

    While your light beam will automatically follow the twists and turns of a course, it will only go straight if it’s in an unoccupied lane. If a light beam jumps in front of you in your lane, your light beam will then jump to the right or left– whichever adjacent lane is empty.

    If you try to navigate your light beam into a “lane” where another beam is, your beam will keep moving to the next adjacent lane until it finds one that’s empty. Sometimes, that means jockey through several lanes that are already occupied, bump into the wall of the track and then bounce all the way back to where it started, which is the only free lane available.

    While doing all this jockeying, drafting and boosting, you of course also want to navigate around walls that you can crash into, or patches that will slow you down. Swooping over boost pads (the green arrows) will also give you a temporary boost. You can even sacrifice your spare lives (you have two each race, which can be lost by crashing into an obstacle) for boost.

    Progressing from one race track to the next requires a separate, more zen-like game mode where you race your light beam down a Tron-like “highway”, building up enough energy until you can take an “off ramp” to the next race track.

    Trippy, surreal– just what you want in an Art Style game.

    • 702 points
      Matthew Tidman says...

      Of course, the game doesn’t explain any of this your first time so it’s all stuff that you figure out as you play… or if you’re daring enough to read the digital instruction manual.

      I did take some footage of the highway mode which is very, very Zen. I could see it being the sort of thing you had playing in the background at a hip party.

      • 697 points
        Adam Sorice says...

        Thanks guys, that sounds pretty original and really creative. Would you reccommend Light Trax over some of the more puzzley Art Style games?

        And I’ve never seen Tron! *hides under desk waiting for middle age to arrive*

      • 360 points
        M. Noah Ward says...

        I recommend any of my favorites, which are Orbient, Cubello and Light Trax, and that order ranks them in “most zen and puzzle-like” to “most action-like”. It depends on what you want most on that continuum. They’re all great investments either way.

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