Unit-e Introduces Neon FM Music Game With Smartphone Interface; Who Changed The Speed?

Posted On: 12/5/2014

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TAGS: arcade game, music game, dance game, Unit-e Technologies, coin-op entertainment, Neon FM, music-themed game, Eric Yockey, redemption game

TIMONIUM, MD -- Unit-e Technologies may have taken a giant step into the future of coin-op entertainment with its new Neon FM music-themed game. It incorporates a state-of-the-art music game into a slim-profile cabinet, and is geared to both the casual player and hardcore videogame dance fan.

Neon FM's gameplay challenges players to strike five large colored pads on the control panel, color-coded to corresponding notes moving down the video display in time with the rhythm of the music selection. At present, the game offers 70 songs, all released by independent labels within the past year.

"Most of the music on the game was produced in the past year or two, a lot of it is from Europe," said Unit-e's Eric Yockey. "The songs include electronic dance, dub and electro house. It's also appropriate for kids; there are no songs with objectionable language. So it should do well in an FEC because of the type of music; it has appeal for young adults," he explained. The company plans to expand the roster of artists over time.

Yockey reported that the game, which has long been in the development process, was specifically made to challenge a wide spectrum of patrons, from first-time players to experts. A redemption option is available.

arcade game, music game, Unit-e Neon FM Where the game breaks new technological territory in coin-op is in its patent-pending smartphone interface. A QR code on the cabinet connects players to the game server and game itself through an Internet connection. A player can create an account, save high scores and see how those scores compare with other players'. "They can also input personal settings for the game, such as color, speed, and note modifications," Yockey added.

The real magic happens when players take advantage of their abilities to interact with the unit in real time. For instance, if a player hands a friend the cellphone after logging in, the friend can then change the playfield color or speed in real time, thus adding challenges to the game in mid-play. "By adding that play feature, your friends could certainly mess with you while you're playing, and I'm sure some people will do so," said Yockey.

In essence, the smartphone interface has added a unique category of player and gameplay. Not only can two players challenge each other's skill at a traditional matchup, they can also challenge opponents by changing key features of the game while it is being played. This is a feature the company is looking to expand with more options. For instance, in the future, players who are logged on will be able to select additional features and "mission mode" challenges. These could include a checklist of game challenges such as to complete a song while the screen is flashing different colors. Players will have the ability to unlock different features simply by logging on.

Neon FM has several novel features for players and operators. Players can sample the available songs before inserting coins, and they pay by the song. "Jukebox-style song selection means you'll always have enough spare change to play a song or two," the company said.

Operators can price the songs separately, which allows Unit-E to provide licensed mainstream tracks at a premium to casual players, while providing an inexpensive "core experience" to veteran gamers.

Each machine supports one player, and multiple machines can be linked to support an unlimited number of simultaneous players.

Neon FM provides two optional ticket redemption modes. The "Roulette" mode enables players to earn spins of a prize wheel when they attain high scores. The "skill" redemption mode awards tickets directly, where local laws require this method.

Unit-e is headquartered in Timonium, MD. Information about Neon FM may be requested by calling (858) 848-6483.