Sega’s latest installment in their Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA rhythm series takes a beloved idol and music genre to a new level, while also breathing new life into the series. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Mega Mix embraces the revolutionary controls of the Nintendo Switch, allowing veterans and newcomers to the series the ability to play at home or on the go.
There are two main types of gameplay when it comes to Mega Mix, Arcade Mode and Mix Mode. While both involve pressing buttons to the rhythm of a song, both offer unique and differing experiences. Arcade Mode has players pressing buttons as they appear on screen, akin to Guitar Hero or Rock Band. The better your timing, the better your overall score. This mode of gameplay can be played handheld or with Joy-Cons detached, and is ideal for players on the go.
Mix Mode, on the other hand, can only be played with Joy-Cons detached from the unit. This means the mode really only works for TV mode or Tabletop mode. Not a very ideal mode for Switch Lite players. Instead of pressing the displayed button in time with the music, players move the Joy-Cons to line up with the prompts while pressing the designated trigger.
Between the two modes, Arcade Mode is seemingly the least complex of the two. Regardless, this game is no easy feat. Jumping into Arcade, I found myself expecting a mix between Guitar Hero and Vocaloid music videos. However, after a few minutes of gameplay, I was immediately humbled by the visual complexity of this game. In Guitar Hero, you could predict the timing in which notes would land, but Mega Mix was a swirl of prompts you follow around the screen on top of flashing music video graphics. I once finished less than 10 percent of a song before Miku decided I had had enough. After relentless practicing, I finally cleared a song and was able to move into “Normal” difficulty. (After mastering Normal, I moved to Hard mode, but Miku once again decided enough was enough.)
One of the features in Mega Mix is the Customization System, which allows players to customize their favorite Vocaloids. I found this to be fairly fun – I was able to dress the Kagamine twins in their own GotGame t-shirts! In addition, players are able to modify controls to enhance their gameplay experience.
Visually, this game is beautiful in both design and detail. No part of Mega Mix felt flat or lacking, feeling incredibly engaging. True to traditional Vocaloid style, every part of the game is bright and eye-catching, with a very techno-pop vibe overall.
All in all, Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Mega Mix is an addictive musical experience for old and new fans alike. With catchy music and engaging techno-pop visuals, as well as an elaborate customization menu, there is something here for everyone. Whether you’re playing at home or on a regular commute, Mega Mix leaves you wanting more.