Fitting the webtoy category more comfortably than being a game, Music Dodge is an entry from Daniel Gutierrez into our 3rd game design competition. Colored bars streak across the screen in time with the background music. You control a colorful orb and must "scratch" against the edge of the bars to score points. It's a simple game of avoidance and precision that really hits home when you play using your own music.
Depending on the beat and sounds, different intensities of colored bars will streak from right to left across the screen. You control a small orb whose only goal is to graze by the outer perimeter of these comets. The longer you do it, the higher your score, which is essentially the only goal of the game. Touch one of the bars full-on and you'll lose the ability to score for a few moments but can re-position yourself to a less crowded part of the screen.
By downloading the swf file to your computer you can play Music Dodge using your own library of mp3 files. This is by far the best feature of the game and creates an extraordinarily personal experience. Scratching along to your favorite tunes can be accurately described as "awesome", although some songs work better than others. There can be some slowdown depending on the intensity of the sounds, but Music Dodge does an excellent job converting the music to a highly visualized pseudo-game.
Music Dodge scores extremely high in the innovation and creativity categories but isn't as fulfilling on the gameplay front. Expect more of a webtoy experience, however, and you won't be disappointed. Creating something as unique as a "beat detector" program is never without its hurdles, but Music Dodge has overcome them all with surprising agility.
dancemonkey - This has been labeled more of a toy than a game, and I guess I agree with that, although I'm not sure that the distinction is very important to me. Since owning my first video game system I've always considered gaming a good excuse to listen to music, and listen to it loud. I've been secretly disappointed in the vast improvements in computer gaming sound and music, since it means I can no longer turn off the sound for a game for fear of missing some critical gameplay element. Well I thank you, Music Dodge, you are exactly what I've been looking. Obvious areas for improvement are having a browse dialog so you can simply select the mp3 from your hard drive, rather than the somewhat convoluted process that's implemented now.