Electroplankton hitting the DS in Japan

Multimedia artist Toshio Iwai puts effort toward a new music game for the Nintendo DS.

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TOKYO--According to retail sources, Nintendo will soon announce a new DS game produced by Japanese multimedia artist Toshio Iwai, best known for his Famicom music game, Otocky (1987). Called Electroplankton, the game is slated for release in Japan on April 7 at the price of 4,800 yen ($46).

Electroplankton is categorized as a "touchable media art" game that presents the player with "soothing music" and graphics on the DS's two screens. The game features 10 "digital planktons" that respond to gamers when they touch the screen or use the microphone. The planktons react by making different gestures and sounds of their own. The game also takes advantage of the DS's microphone by recording and playing back sounds and voices as tunes.

While details on gameplay are scarce, it's known that Electroplankton will include a number of classic 8-bit Famicom melodies, including those from Super Mario Bros.

The game will also have an "audience mode" in which it creates new musical tunes on its own. Electroplankton is slated to come bundled with a pair of headphones.

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