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March 2, 2013–January 31, 2014
Matsuura, a designer and musician based in Tokyo, is one of the inventors of the modern musical video game. Vib-ribbon’s code has been written to take into account the player’s choice of music, and any music CD can be used to set the pace of the game. White lines on a black background form sketchy drawings of the environment and the main character, a rabbit named Vibri. As Vibri, the player walks along a stringlike road filled with obstacles, their frequency generated by the chosen sound track. Pressing the correct buttons at the right time will let Vibri pass unharmed; the faster the beat of the song, the quicker the player must react. If the player is continuously unsuccessful, Vibri devolves: she will change from a rabbit to a frog and then to a worm. If the player is successful, she is elevated to a fairy princess. At the end of each level, Vibri sings a congratulatory song that gets longer as the player’s score gets higher.