Muse Dash from PeroPeroGames and X.D Network Inc launched onto Steam and Nintendo Switch on the 20th of June 2019. The Steam and Nintendo Switch versions of Muse Dash are a port of the original mobile game that’s been around for quite some time now. Muse Dash on PC features the same gameplay as the mobile game but with added mouse and keyboard support as well as a higher framerate and resolution to boot.
In Muse Dash, Players will take on the role of an anime girl and do glorious battle against waves of enemies while upbeat music plays. It’s a rhythm game first and foremost so the enemies that fly at you and the attacks you perform are as expected, synced to the beat of the song that’s playing. The base game features 55 songs that can be unlocked and there’s a lot of DLC songs that are currently locked behind a paywall. On Steam, the DLC is quite pricey though but if you’re hooked on the game, you wouldn’t think twice about spending on it to unlock more songs.
Much like other rhythm games in the genre such as Beat Saber, Osu! and Cytus, Muse Dash features simple gameplay that’s easy to understand but incredibly hard to master. The game thrives on this and pushes you to do better than before. Getting a low rank yields less points for you to level up and you’ll be chasing perfect scores and high combos before you know it. All it took to hook me was one catchy upbeat song and suddenly 40 minutes disappeared.
Muse Dash is infectious, colourful and has an anime aesthetic that’s great if you’re a fan of the cutesy arstyle used. The gameplay as mentioned above is simple but that’s where it succeeds. By performing a low or high attack at the right time, players will defeat enemies and start racking up a combo and high score. Some segments in levels include parts where you have to hold a specific attack button or press both attack buttons at the same time. There’s even boss battles to round of the package. It’s a classic rhythm game formula and the reward of unlocking new items to use and new levels to play keeps you coming back for more.
Speaking of items, there’s a whole bunch of them that are unlocked upon completing levels. Collect enough of these and you’ll unlock character illustrations or new characters to play with. Each character in Muse Dash has a special ability and to further add to the customization options, you’ll eventually be able to unlock an “Elfin”. An “Elfin” is like a little helper of sorts which provides a bonus ability. Pairing the right character with the right Elfin before tackling a song can make a world of difference to your final score. Thus finding the right combination to reach the elusive S rank on each song is quite a challenge and to further add to the game’s longevity, each beatmap has a harder difficulty too where things really get intense.
Muse Dash looks great on PC and runs smoothly. There’s even a calibration option in the menus that also allows you perfectly sync up the audio and visuals so that your gameplay is unaffected. Graphically, the anime aesthetic that borders on the slightly lewd side at times might put some people off but if you can look past that, the game is incredibly fun to play. The song selection might not be to everyone’s taste but if you’re a fan of Japanese music and you’re familiar with upbeat asian pop and rock, the beatmaps on offer in Muse Dash will be highly appreciated
Overall, Muse Dash is a great rhythm game. It’s currently extremely well priced on Steam but the DLC is quite pricey and hopefully gets separated out into smaller packs in the future. If you’re a fan of rhythm games, upbeat music and anime aesthetic, it’s definitely worth checking out Muse Dash.