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ℹ️ - Hi-Fi Rush


Released on the very same day that it was announced earlier this year, Hi-Fi Rush sees something of a departure from the usual style at Tango Gameworks. Previously known for much darker titles with The Evil Within and Ghostwire Tokyo, this game is positively vibrant in comparison. That goes for both its appearance and theme, and the whole thing is very reminiscent of the likes of Jet Set Radio, Persona, and Viewtiful Joe.


With the all-action, cel-shaded visuals of an incredibly stylish cartoon, the gameplay fuses dynamic combos of attacks with a rhythm-based mechanic in a beat that the whole world moves to. Imagine Devil May Cry crossed with Patapon; apparently that is the side-effect of having an MP3 player cybernetically fused to your heart and to be honest, it's a pretty joyous one.

Having such an abundance of visual style, Hi-Fi Rush clearly has lots of potential interest for virtual photographers, although it did initially launch with no sign of a photo mode. However, as they have shown with Ghostwire Tokyo which received a massive update to its originally underwhelming photo mode, Tango Gameworks are not afraid to flex their virtual photography muscle in a game post-launch.


No surprise then that Hi-Fi Rush has recently been issued with a major update which, alongside the usual bug fixes and improvements, adds a complete photo mode that is ready to capture all your best rockstar moments. This is not just a matter of adding the bare essentials either, and the studio are clearly into their stride now when it comes to building creative camera tools.

In a fully-featured and innovative implementation, free camera movement is held back only by the strange decision to limit roll to just 45°, but it is complemented with manual focus and aperture settings for some good optical characteristics. The camera options also include visual tweaks like vignette, chromatic aberration, and film grain – I'm not 100% convinced that the latter is needed in a cel-shaded setting mind you – along with a very impressive set of colour filter tools.


Going way beyond basic presets, although there are 14 of those available too, the filter options offer complete control over the hue, saturation, brightness, and luminance of the colours in the image, not to mention an optional video scanline overlay. Where things get really interesting though is that all of these colour settings can be altered independently for the character, environment, and "other" elements. The result is being free to create all manner of multi-toned images and some highly creative visual styles.

Befitting of the cartoon and comic aesthetic, 12 graphical overlay frames are also available – but no sign of any individual stickers – while the character posing options are particularly engaging and really take things to another level. Along with a basic visibility toggle, the multitude of poses and facial expressions are truly outstanding. Both are incredibly varied and perfectly in keeping with the personality of the game; there are no boring or out-of-character postures here.


A range of X, Y, and Z-axis positioning, coupled with on-the-spot rotation mean that you can place the on-screen character right where you need them. Oh yeah, and all of this can be done with each of the 6 main protagonists, even if they are not originally in the scene. Simply put, this is a photo mode that is capable of fun groups shots like no other!


For a longer look at the Hi-Fi Rush photo mode in action, why no check out this episode of the Photomode UNPLUGGED podcast...


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