A brand new game from Tonypa, this one is a variation on Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) designed for playing with fingers, instead of legs, and using a computer keyboard for input instead of a dance pad.
Like most games from Tonypa, Keyway is very simple to play. Using symbols to represent the arrow keys and the space bar, the game displays a sequence of keys that the player must press in order, and as quickly as possible, to advance to the next level, or screen.
There are 20 screens total, and you begin with 100 seconds total with which to make it through them all. You receive an additional 10 seconds for completing each screen, and you lose 5 seconds every time you make a mistake and press the wrong key.
Scoring is relatively simple and straightforward: you receive a point for every correct key you press, 10 points for every level you complete, and bonus for the longest correct chain. Bonuses are added up at the end and tallied to reach your final score. If you finish the game you receive another 1000 bonus points.
Analysis: Like so many of Tonypa's game designs, Keyway is simple and elegant and a wonderful addition to his growing collection of casual games. Although the game features similar gameplay to the previously reviewed Beat Bubbles, he changes many of the characteristics of the game to make this one stand on its own. For example, I especially liked that each level's key sequence is randomly generated, as well as entire levels being switched around at random. This allows the game to feel fresh every time. Also, each level's key sequence is initially hidden from view, and then a smooth animation fade is used to reveal each key slowly. This actually has more than an aesthetic affect, as it forces the player to pace through each level. It also creates an additional challenge since the ability to look ahead is removed.
The only nitpick I have is that eventually the key down sound becomes a bit grating to my ears, though your experience may be different. Also, sometimes a background task causes Flash to pause for a split-second and that can cause me to retype the same key thinking that the first time didn't 'take'. This usually ends up in a mistake, which can be a little frustrating. And while this is not a flaw with the design, it is probably an indication that this type of game is not best suited for the Flash platform.
All things considered, Keyway is another fine design from Tonypa that is very enjoyable to play and one that can be picked up again and again.