536757We've known for quite some time now that a Lumines port for the iPhone was in the works, and with the flurry of releases lately it likely slipped to the back of everyone's mind. Tonight LUMINES - Touch Fusion [App Store] appeared for download along with an associated lite version, and so far the reaction in our forums has been all over the place.

The game is completely Lumines, with everything from flashy visual flare to the signature Lumines soundtrack. If you're unfamilar with the series, here are the basics:

Lumines is a color matching block dropping puzzle game. Squares made of four smaller blocks appear on screen that can be rotated and then moved in to place on the game board. A line moves from left to right across the screen synchronized to the music. When this line passes over groups of four or more matched blocks, those blocks disappear.

As the game progresses, the line moves faster and faster. Getting a high score hinges heavily on your ability to set up massive matched groupings of blocks between each pass of the line moving across the screen to clear them. Lumines is played with different unlockable "skins" that change the appearance of the board and the soundtrack.


Video by AppBank
[ Full HD version | Low Bandwidth version ]

The problem with the iPhone port of Lumines, predictably, are the controls. Lumines is a fast paced game that obviously relies heavily on quick rotation and accurate positioning of the blocks to survive for very long. The control scheme of the iPhone port involves swiping to move blocks and tapping to rotate them. This sounds good on paper, but in practice the game can rarely determine what your intentions are unless you play much slower with much more deliberate on-screen gestures than you normally would.

In my time with the game, I've started to get used to the controls, but I'm still nowhere near the level of speed and precision I had moving blocks around in the PSP version of the game. Meanwhile, many others are finding the game unplayable in its current form. Aside from the controls, another point of contention on our forums is the inclusion of DLC skin packs that can be purchased for $1.99. Currently there is only one additional DLC pack available, and here is a video of the skins in the "Comic Pack":


Video by AppBank
[ Full HD version | Low Bandwidth version ]

If you've never played a Lumines game before, give the lite a try just because the mechanics of the game are worth experiencing. But even if you're a fan of the game series, I'd still recommend sticking with the lite first to test out the controls.

App Store Links:

TouchArcade Rating

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  • crsrc

    It's been a long time since I played Lumines and when I did I only played it once for about 30 minutes but the controls seem like they should (emphasis on should) work. I think they were just lazy. The tetris clone Tris uses these same controls and they are pretty flawless. If they could just get it that good I think the game would be totally worth it but as is its just frustrating to play. Down seems to work just 1% of the time. wtf is up with that?

  • crsrc

    It's been a long time since I played Lumines and when I did I only played it once for about 30 minutes but the controls seem like they should (emphasis on should) work. I think they were just lazy. The tetris clone Tris uses these same controls and they are pretty flawless. If they could just get it that good I think the game would be totally worth it but as is its just frustrating to play. Down seems to work just 1% of the time. wtf is up with that?

  • Bowb4zod

    The controls are so bad. I loved thus game on the PSP. But this is just crap on the iPhone. FIX THE CONTROLS PEOPLE!!! Did they even try the controls before releasing the game?

  • Bowb4zod

    The controls are so bad. I loved thus game on the PSP. But this is just crap on the iPhone. FIX THE CONTROLS PEOPLE!!! Did they even try the controls before releasing the game?

  • arta

    Another victim of the "playing to the strengths and philosophies of the iPhone's unique features" instead of using common sense and playtesting the thing.

  • arta

    Another victim of the "playing to the strengths and philosophies of the iPhone's unique features" instead of using common sense and playtesting the thing.

  • Chris

    The controls killed it. It feels like I have little to no control of the blocks. To bad Lumines was made for iPhone. it turns blocks when I want to push them to the bottom. Why not tap the left side of the screen to rotate the block left and tap the right side of the screen to rotate the block right? Also, when I hold down on the screen to move the block left and right, without releasing a quick motion down should push the block to the bottom. Q, use these controls and Lumines will be the best game of all time.

  • Chris

    The controls killed it. It feels like I have little to no control of the blocks. To bad Lumines was made for iPhone. it turns blocks when I want to push them to the bottom. Why not tap the left side of the screen to rotate the block left and tap the right side of the screen to rotate the block right? Also, when I hold down on the screen to move the block left and right, without releasing a quick motion down should push the block to the bottom. Q, use these controls and Lumines will be the best game of all time.

  • http://www.twitter.com/kudzaikun kudzaikun

    hmm

    So the controls are not great but they are workable, like Chris said i would also prefer that they let the sides do the rotating and let the center screen be used for moving the block, its okay to play this game with more than one hand. I too hope they add some customization.

    I love luminess and its only 2.99 so i am gona buy it anyway. hopes for an update with control fix

  • http://www.twitter.com/kudzaikun kudzaikun

    hmm

    So the controls are not great but they are workable, like Chris said i would also prefer that they let the sides do the rotating and let the center screen be used for moving the block, its okay to play this game with more than one hand. I too hope they add some customization.

    I love luminess and its only 2.99 so i am gona buy it anyway. hopes for an update with control fix

  • http://cryptomorphic.com guyal

    I was a Lumines freak back in the original PSP days. Pretty darn good at it. Then I was burned by the money-grubbing nature of the XBox port. I started to get the old urge back when I booted the Lite version. But for a veteran, the controls seem unplayable compared to the speed/precision blend I could lose my mind on in the original.

    If you've never played Lumines, the control scheme is not bad. Slide down to drop is cool. But its all too far removed from the zen manic world I could inhabit Back In The Day. It's a different game.

  • http://cryptomorphic.com guyal

    I was a Lumines freak back in the original PSP days. Pretty darn good at it. Then I was burned by the money-grubbing nature of the XBox port. I started to get the old urge back when I booted the Lite version. But for a veteran, the controls seem unplayable compared to the speed/precision blend I could lose my mind on in the original.

    If you've never played Lumines, the control scheme is not bad. Slide down to drop is cool. But its all too far removed from the zen manic world I could inhabit Back In The Day. It's a different game.

  • lol

    I want D-pad..
    problem is when i try to slide blocks down, block turns 90deg then it slides down, or block moves few rows then down etc.
    :( it will be impossible to play like this on higher lvl..

  • lol

    I want D-pad..
    problem is when i try to slide blocks down, block turns 90deg then it slides down, or block moves few rows then down etc.
    :( it will be impossible to play like this on higher lvl..

  • Jazz

    Hope that they improve on the controls to be like tetris from EA games. The controls on lumine was too slow.

  • Jazz

    Hope that they improve on the controls to be like tetris from EA games. The controls on lumine was too slow.

  • Lum's Stormtrooper

    I just had a quick go of this and the controls don't seem too bad. It works like EA's Tetris except with a little lag. They're not perfect but they're functional at least, which is more than can be said for most iPhone games.

    Ultimately Lumines is a quick game and NEEDs a real d-pad. There's just no way around that, but as a quick fix on the go Lumines when I don't have my PSP with me, this is fine.

  • Lum's Stormtrooper

    I just had a quick go of this and the controls don't seem too bad. It works like EA's Tetris except with a little lag. They're not perfect but they're functional at least, which is more than can be said for most iPhone games.

    Ultimately Lumines is a quick game and NEEDs a real d-pad. There's just no way around that, but as a quick fix on the go Lumines when I don't have my PSP with me, this is fine.

  • http://chesstris.com/ Martin

    I have to agree with guyal, I was pissed when the xbox port made you purchase additional themes. WTF?!? I already own Lumines and Lumines II for PSP, Lumines Live! for xbox.

    I'll probably just stick with Irides, a lumines clone (with only slightly different gameplay), which is admittedly not as flashy, but definitely captures the "feel" of Lumines, and has three different control schemes to pick from.

  • http://chesstris.com/ Martin

    I have to agree with guyal, I was pissed when the xbox port made you purchase additional themes. WTF?!? I already own Lumines and Lumines II for PSP, Lumines Live! for xbox.

    I'll probably just stick with Irides, a lumines clone (with only slightly different gameplay), which is admittedly not as flashy, but definitely captures the "feel" of Lumines, and has three different control schemes to pick from.

  • http://www.pixelbox.net Rob M

    They seriously screwed up with the controls!

    Like everyone says swiping down only works a fraction of the time. Most of the time it either doesn't do anything or rotates the block.

    It's infuriating when your trying to quickly slide some blocks down! Makes the game unplayable, even on a 3GS!

    This has to be sorted out, Tris had no problems

  • http://www.pixelbox.net Rob M

    They seriously screwed up with the controls!

    Like everyone says swiping down only works a fraction of the time. Most of the time it either doesn't do anything or rotates the block.

    It's infuriating when your trying to quickly slide some blocks down! Makes the game unplayable, even on a 3GS!

    This has to be sorted out, Tris had no problems

  • Lord Gek

    In the mean time there is always Irides (formerly Blocks2, the best Lumines clone out there). It may lack all of the fancy skins and music, but the controls are pretty tight!

  • Lord Gek

    In the mean time there is always Irides (formerly Blocks2, the best Lumines clone out there). It may lack all of the fancy skins and music, but the controls are pretty tight!

  • Rev

    This can easily become my favourite iPhone game... if they fix the controls of course.

  • Rev

    This can easily become my favourite iPhone game... if they fix the controls of course.

  • http://www.twitter.com/kudzaikun kudzaikun

    after playing it some more at night, it seems that one of the biggest issues the controls have is sensitivity, i find that i have to really touch it when i am sliding my pieces otherwise somethin dumb happens, and it just makes the experience more fustrating

  • http://www.twitter.com/kudzaikun kudzaikun

    after playing it some more at night, it seems that one of the biggest issues the controls have is sensitivity, i find that i have to really touch it when i am sliding my pieces otherwise somethin dumb happens, and it just makes the experience more fustrating

  • MINI vanilli

    I TRIED to like it...so hard, to make the controls playable, but they are not. This game is the tragety release of the year. The usability at testing team
    on this game should be put out of work. The controls are worthless. Why would they use the same control to rotate the blocks as sliding the block down or side to side? It's like you do the motion and hope the game chooses to react the way you hope it will.

    • belsunce

      @ MINI vanilli: OMG I feel the same way. I was SO looking fwd to this one when it was announced and it turned out to be just like Super Monkey Ball and Katamari: a HUUUUUUGE letdown (and a complete eff up because of the controls)

      Thank god I heard about the release on TA and read the remark about there being a lite version because otherwise, I woulda insta-bought, especially for 2,99

      Honestly, I would have EASILY paid double that if they'd gotten the controls right (YES to whoever suggested a virtual d-pad, OMG). As is, I'm not touching with a ten foot pole, and that Lite version? it's gone from my iTouch

      what a shame. another missed (MESSED) opportunity

  • MINI vanilli

    I TRIED to like it...so hard, to make the controls playable, but they are not. This game is the tragety release of the year. The usability at testing team
    on this game should be put out of work. The controls are worthless. Why would they use the same control to rotate the blocks as sliding the block down or side to side? It's like you do the motion and hope the game chooses to react the way you hope it will.

    • belsunce

      @ MINI vanilli: OMG I feel the same way. I was SO looking fwd to this one when it was announced and it turned out to be just like Super Monkey Ball and Katamari: a HUUUUUUGE letdown (and a complete eff up because of the controls)

      Thank god I heard about the release on TA and read the remark about there being a lite version because otherwise, I woulda insta-bought, especially for 2,99

      Honestly, I would have EASILY paid double that if they'd gotten the controls right (YES to whoever suggested a virtual d-pad, OMG). As is, I'm not touching with a ten foot pole, and that Lite version? it's gone from my iTouch

      what a shame. another missed (MESSED) opportunity

  • Adams Immersive

    I'm thinking this may be a case for three fingers on three buttons--even though it would limit how you can hold the phone, it would be quick and precise control.

    You could even customize where the 3 buttons are, using your two hands any way you like. If I were making a game like that I'd even let you change the button positions quickly any time the game is paused.

  • Adams Immersive

    I'm thinking this may be a case for three fingers on three buttons--even though it would limit how you can hold the phone, it would be quick and precise control.

    You could even customize where the 3 buttons are, using your two hands any way you like. If I were making a game like that I'd even let you change the button positions quickly any time the game is paused.

  • Moroboshi

    Having played through the trial I agree on the controls. They're just too wooly and at least 50% of the time when I want to drop a block, it rotates it instead. The same control setup worked a lot better in EA's Tetris port.

  • Moroboshi

    Having played through the trial I agree on the controls. They're just too wooly and at least 50% of the time when I want to drop a block, it rotates it instead. The same control setup worked a lot better in EA's Tetris port.

  • brof

    they should have a button for dropping the block. Dropping is the only problem I have... rotating and moving is fine, but when I try to drop.... arrgh

  • brof

    they should have a button for dropping the block. Dropping is the only problem I have... rotating and moving is fine, but when I try to drop.... arrgh

  • Galaxius

    Yea I keep hitting the pause button because it just feels more comfortable to use my right hand to tap and move. However when I swipe up to move it down faster (the idea is THERE, implementation however leaves much to be desired) I'll sometimes hit pause accidentally. It is really bad implementation but if they continue and make them better I will consider the full version, until then the lite for me

  • Galaxius

    Yea I keep hitting the pause button because it just feels more comfortable to use my right hand to tap and move. However when I swipe up to move it down faster (the idea is THERE, implementation however leaves much to be desired) I'll sometimes hit pause accidentally. It is really bad implementation but if they continue and make them better I will consider the full version, until then the lite for me

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/31343952@N05/sets/ b

    yup, very bad controls. i was really looking forward to this game on my ipod touch too. maybe they thought no one would notice if they released a half ass version of a venerated series for an extremely popular device, or they just plain didn't put enough resources into the project to submit a finished game. disappointed. might as well save up for that pspgo....

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/31343952@N05/sets/ b

    yup, very bad controls. i was really looking forward to this game on my ipod touch too. maybe they thought no one would notice if they released a half ass version of a venerated series for an extremely popular device, or they just plain didn't put enough resources into the project to submit a finished game. disappointed. might as well save up for that pspgo....

  • Pal Van Marrsterhausen

    http://www.qentertainment.com/iPn/form.php?lang=en

    I sent a lengthy comment to Q Entertainment regarding the "unique" control scheme of Lumines. So if you have time I suggest you jump on the band wagon and get those feelings heard! I haven't heard back yet from Q but I'll let you know when I do.

  • Pal Van Marrsterhausen

    http://www.qentertainment.com/iPn/form.php?lang=en

    I sent a lengthy comment to Q Entertainment regarding the "unique" control scheme of Lumines. So if you have time I suggest you jump on the band wagon and get those feelings heard! I haven't heard back yet from Q but I'll let you know when I do.

  • Steve

    I, for one, think the controls are excellent. All you idiots are probably smashing on the screen the swipe down, when really a light touch will do it. Haven't had any problems with it yet, and I've poured a couple hours into it so far. This version is no one near as excellent as the PSP one, due mainly to the lack of skins. Despite that, for $3, you can't go wrong with this. Easily the best puzzler game on the iPhone.

  • Steve

    I, for one, think the controls are excellent. All you idiots are probably smashing on the screen the swipe down, when really a light touch will do it. Haven't had any problems with it yet, and I've poured a couple hours into it so far. This version is no one near as excellent as the PSP one, due mainly to the lack of skins. Despite that, for $3, you can't go wrong with this. Easily the best puzzler game on the iPhone.

  • DeShaunz

    I wanted to throw my iPhone when playing this!! It could be great but like everyone else is saying the controls suck!! I can't even get passed the first stage because of the controls!! Hopefully someone from Q reads this and fixes it. But for now I'm rating it a one and everyone else should do the same.

  • DeShaunz

    I wanted to throw my iPhone when playing this!! It could be great but like everyone else is saying the controls suck!! I can't even get passed the first stage because of the controls!! Hopefully someone from Q reads this and fixes it. But for now I'm rating it a one and everyone else should do the same.

  • Robert M.

    Steve you're the idiot! Really you're out numbered. The controls suck!! Stop feeding yourself lies...

  • Robert M.

    Steve you're the idiot! Really you're out numbered. The controls suck!! Stop feeding yourself lies...

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/31343952@N05/sets/ b again

    not just about being 'outnumbered'; the game is "playable" but not to the extent and enjoyment in the way it was originally designed to. shoehorned is a term. not worth buying would be a phrase. sending complaints now so they hopefully resonate with the plain fact that this game is broken.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/31343952@N05/sets/ b again

    not just about being 'outnumbered'; the game is "playable" but not to the extent and enjoyment in the way it was originally designed to. shoehorned is a term. not worth buying would be a phrase. sending complaints now so they hopefully resonate with the plain fact that this game is broken.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/31343952@N05/sets/ negative b

    sh*t. try using two fingers for all the inputs for the entire game. improves the controls. not totally success but makes the game playable

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/31343952@N05/sets/ negative b

    sh*t. try using two fingers for all the inputs for the entire game. improves the controls. not totally success but makes the game playable