There has been a definite rise in social gaming as of late, with titles such as Draw Something and Hay Day dominating the App Store.
Only last month, social networking giant Facebook announced that SongPop had placed first in the website’s top 25 games of 2012, receiving the highest star ratings and engagement levels over the course of the year. But what is it exactly that makes this FreshPlanet-developed game worthy of such stature? Find out after the jump.
In a Nutshell
SongPop is a music trivia game in which you, the player, must correctly guess five song clips from a choice of four playlists in record time against your opponent, who will then be presented with the exact same challenge.
Once you have both had your turn, scores are compared, and the winner is selected. Your opponent will then send a challenge in return, repeating the process until the end of the tournament, where the overall winner of that week is announced.
The Scoring System
Each correct answer is awarded with a number of points, depending on how quick the song is guessed and the amount of consecutive correct answers held. For every challenge won you will be compensated with three coins, which can then be used to purchase additional playlists and Power Ups to enhance the game further. Don’t be disheartened, however, if you fail to recognize most of songs at hand as SongPop will still deposit one coin for each challenge lost, too.
Answering three or more questions correctly in a row will land you a Multiplier, which means more points, and the chance to earn stars that will help unlock more songs inside that particular playlist.
Challenge Anyone and Everyone
Logging in via Facebook will enable the opportunity to compete against friends and family, in addition to earning two Power Ups, but more on those in just a second.
For those without a Facebook account, you can find an opponent by entering an email address or username of an existing player, or simply by selecting Random, where you will be teamed up with a random SongPop user.
Thank You For the Music
SongPop sports a variety of genres, with music ranging from the ’50s to today, organised in playlists such as Classic Rock, Love Songs, Today’s Hits, ’90s Alternative and the ’80s Collection. Featuring work by Michael Jackson, U2 and Celine Dion, as well as relative newcomers like One Direction, Lana Del Rey and Charlene Soraia, I think it’s safe to say that SongPop has something for everyone, whatever your age and musical preference.
As I previously mentioned, additional playlists are also available for purchase using coins — the Best Of SongPop being one example, comprising a medley of the app’s most popular tunes. FreshPlanet release new playlists fairly often, compiled with the help of SongPop players around the globe, ensuring that the content is fresh and up to date.
Unleash the Power
Power Ups are used as currency in SongPop alongside coins, and take the form of golden musical notes. The game begins with five Power Ups, which can be used to shuffle through various locked playlists and purchase the one you want. They can also be used to delete two of four possible answers when attempting to guess a song, allowing a better chance of selecting the correct answer.
Power Ups are acquired by winning the SongPop weekly tournament, where you will be awarded one for every person defeated, or via the Shop using coins purchased or won throughout the game.
If you are running low on funds, more coins can be bought via an in-app purchase, with prices ranging from $1.99 for 400 coins to $24.99 for 10,000. Coins may also be earned by tapping on the Free Coins tab in the Shop and visiting or signing up to affiliate links. This is the first time I’ve seen this incorporated within a game, and I think it makes great business sense for the developer, as well as benefiting the user, too.
Free, Premium or VIP?
SongPop is available in three different versions — Free, Premium, and VIP. SongPop Free is free to download, but will only allow you to challenge 20 people at a time, has a large amount of advertisements and features only three playlists to choose from with ten-second long song clips.
SongPop Premium will set you back $1.99, and has a number of benefits, such as higher quality sound, 20-second music clips, the ability to play with up to 40 players, no advertisements, plus VIP status and privileges for a month.
SongPop VIP is a subscription based service that can only be purchased via Facebook on a desktop computer. VIP status will allow you to chat with other users while playing the game, and also sports even longer music clips. Subscription prices start at $1.99 per week, with a one-year subscription costing $39.99.
SongPop is a classic example of a title which is great fun in small doses, but can begin to get a touch repetitive in longer sittings. Its three tiered pricing system is a great idea, and provides an entry point into the game whatever one’s budget.
While SongPop is unlikely to appeal to hardcore gamers, people looking for a simple and intuitive pick-up-and-play game should find plenty to enjoy, however limited their musical knowledge.