Hatsune Miku: Project Diva Arcade Future Tone DX (初音ミク Project DIVA Future Tone DX) is a music rhythm game developed by Crypton Future Media and published by SEGA for the PlayStation 4. It was released in Japan in June 2016 followed by a physical release in November 2017 and was also available in the west digitally in January 2017.
So this is a fun one to talk about. Hatsune Miku, vocaloid idol that has been around for probably two decades at this point, has had quite a lot of music released over the years. So many that SEGA made dozens of music rhythm games based on Miku and her companions over the years. Those games were called Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA, which started on the PlayStation Portable in 2009. The west didn’t get a release until Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F came out on PlayStation 3, though physical copies were very limited and Europe had to put up with a digital only release.
While that was happening, in 2010 SEGA also made an Arcade version that I believe was considered the best version for many music rhythm and Miku fans, and was definitely way more complex than the portable and console versions. This was called Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Arcade and only came out in Japan, but then during Tokyo Games Show 2015 they announced plans to bring the Arcade version to PlayStation 4, which eventually got released in June 2016.
That said, Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Arcade Future Tone, the name of the console version, was released as a digital only title and setup in a way so that you can download the base model for free but only includes two songs. This is because SEGA has packaged the songs into two big bundles; Future Sound and Colorful Tone.
Future Sound features 127 songs from the Project DIVA games released on PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita and PlayStation 3, while Colorful Tone features 95 songs from Project MIRAI released on the Nintendo 3DS as well as songs from Project DIVA Arcade that weren’t featured in the other games. Prices for each bundle were ¥3,900 plus Tax.
I did download the Japanese digital version of Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Arcade Future Tone when I first received the PlayStation 4 in June 2016 and really enjoyed it, though I only acquired the Future Sound bundle since I was more familiar with the songs included in the PlayStation games. That said, when SEGA brought the game to the west I did download the English version when it went on sale years later.
Despite being released as a digital download, SEGA eventually offered a physical release with all of the content (released at the time) on the disc, entitled Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Arcade Future Tone DX. This collection has a lot packaged on the disc:
- 127 songs from Future Sound bundle
- 95 songs from Colorful Tone bundle
- 4 songs from 1st Encore Pack
- 4 songs from 2nd Encore Pack
- 4 songs from 3rd Encore Pack
- 2 songs from the DX physical release
That’s 238 songs in total. As well as 398 modules for those who like to customise the characters.
The only content not included on the disc were two additional DLC packs that came out in 2020 called the Mega39’s/MegaMix Encore Pack 1 & 2. These are songs that were included on the Nintendo Switch game Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Mega39’s (in the west it’s known as MegaMix), which would increase the total number of songs to 252.
The Project DIVA games are pretty simple to understand if you were importing the Japanese versions. The main menus are split between the song list and a few options. There’s no story mode whatsoever. The top option covers the Setlist that allows you to choose a song to play, the second option is for customising your vocaloid’s costumes, the third option is viewing a playlist of Music Videos for specific songs, the fourth option is a record of the game’s progression, the fifth option is the PlayStation Store to download extra content (though if you’re like me who’s using a UK account on a Japanese copy, you’ll have to manually go to the Japanese store to download and access the content due to regional differences), and the fifth option is the options/settings.
In the game’s setlist menu, you will be able to view all of the songs that are available in the game. You can change the order of the list between name, difficulty (stars), and vocaloid artist using Square, while L1 & R1 can change the options of the sort (from Easy to Extreme for instance). You can also press the touch button to favourite the song. The difficulty of the song is shown by the star on the left side of the song option, and when you finish a song, a small percentage will be displayed on the bottom right part of the song option which can go as high as over 100% sometimes. The right side of the song option will also display the rank you achieved. Pressing Triangle on any song will bring up the customisation menu where you can change which character or module you want to use for that particular song.
When you select a song, a mini menu will pop up which allows you to toggle on/off no-fail, add additional challenges to make the gameplay harder, and depending on the song the option to switch vocalist track. The main big button is the option is play the song, play a Music Video version, or play in Practice Mode.
In the customise menu you can change the modules of the vocaloids. The first option covers the modules themselves which are basically costumes from each song, and you can sort it by different characters. The second and third options cover the add-ons for the characters like hats and hairstyles which can also be accessed in the modules section. The fourth option is the sound customisation for the button presses and slides, and the fifth option is the button customisation.
The button customisation is split into different options which includes the button layout, slide options which you can turn on/off the PlayStation 4 motion and touch pad controls, controller assists for toggle on/off multiple button combination notes which won’t work on Extreme & Extra Extreme difficulties, controller vibration on/off, controller speaker on/off, toggle on/off whether Miku & co. sings or not if you miss a note, placement of buttons, and progress meter.
In the record menu you have five options. The first option covers the records of your progress such as high scores, which is split into three different sub-options but the general idea is the same between each. The second option is for online rankings which is split into different sub-options as well, between overall song list rankings, Future Sound rankings, Colorful Tone rankings, Survival Course rankings and Share Score Data. The third option is the game’s tutorial, the fourth option is the opening sequences for the Project DIVA Arcade game, and the fifth option is the game’s credits.
In the options menu you have more settings. First is the sound effects which covers background menu music and sound volumes for the music, button presses and sound effects, the second is image display which covers the menu and loading screens, the third is the WEB menu, the fourth and fifth are for timing/calibration in case your TV and button presses don’t sync correctly (Rock Band, Guitar Hero and music rhythm games in general tend to have this issue), and the sixth option is enabling auto save.
As for the gameplay itself, since it’s based on the Arcade version we have 60 frames per second (and 4K resolution if you are playing on either a PlayStation 4 Pro or PlayStation 5 via backwards compatibility). While Project DIVA on PlayStation 3, PSP & Vita were pretty easy to control, the Arcade version introduces more challenges to the mix, such as having to press L1 & R1 buttons for extra notes that appear on the screen as little arrows and sometimes combining those with the D-Pad and shape buttons. Fortunately these challenges are often tied to the Extreme and Extra Extreme difficulties so you can still get the challenging feel of the previous games on Hard difficulty.
The trophies are also streamlined so you just need to play each song at least once and you’re good to go. A Platinum trophy was also included with the DX version which has its own trophy list so you won’t need to redo the whole game again if you’re like me who had previously purchased one of the bundles in the digital version. Also, the save data from the digital original version can be carried over onto the physical DX version.
I acquired the Japanese physical release because I wanted to own a physical copy of the game, and it’s taken me this long to get it because it is not a cheap release. It retailed for ¥7,990 plus Tax and had barely reduced in price over the years, so when I finally got a new job I immediately imported it from Solaris Japan as soon as I could.
Released: 22nd November 2017
|HDD Space||33.40 GB (with Patch 1.13 applied)|
|Remote Play Support||Yes|
Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Arcade Future Tone DX is available to download on the PlayStation Network for all regions. A physical release is still available in Japan for PlayStation 4.