Video Game: Cytus

Cytus is a Rhythm Game developed for iOS, Android, and PS Vita by Rayark.

The game can be described as a horizontal, non-splitscreen version of DJMAX Technika: A black scan line scrolls up and down and you must hit notes as the line goes over them. Occasionally, there are "hold" notes that must be held down until the entire note passes, and "drag" notes where the note must be dragged as the line sweeps over it.

Cytus is available for 1.99 USD. Initially, Rayark adapted a "Million Downloads Plan": three chapters were initially available with the next two chapters being DLC purchases, and every 100,000 downloads would reveal a new chapter and unlock the oldest DLC-locked chapter, the idea being to reach 1 million downloads to provide roughly 100 additional songs total. This goal was met in March 2015, and as of Cytus 8.0, released in July 2015, all ten main chapters, as well as the special chapters Symphony, Knight, and Million are available for play upon purchase, with 149 songs across all of these chapters. The special chapters Prologue, Retro, and Timeline can be purchased separately for 4.99 USD each, bringing up the song count to 180 songs for roughly 17 USD.

An arcade Cytus game, Cytus OMEGA, was announced at the Japanese arcade expo JAEPO in February 2015, and location tests were held in July 2015.

Cytus contains examples of:

  • After the End: In Timeline, Taiwan is shown to be recovering two centuries after the earthquake and nuclear disaster of 2059, with plants covering long-abandoned-and-later-repurposed 21st-century buildings.
  • All There in the Manual:
    • The game's official website reveals several pieces of information that aren't mentioned at all in game, including the game's storyline, and the name of the girl seen on the title screen, the app icon, and the chapter splash screens: Vanessa. This changed with the latest update which adds the manual into the hidden songs from Cytus Alive.
    • Also in the same vein, the two girls featured in Chapter K are named Rosabel (Red) and Iris (Blue).
    • The hidden songs don't have their names shown. They do have official namesnote , but you'll have to look at soundtracks or their artist's websites to learn them, or use the Twitter and Facebook share buttons.
  • Alternate Continuity: Clear the first 10 songs of the Knight chapter to unlock an 11th song, "Music. The Eternity of Us", that depicts an alternate timeline where Iris and Rosabel stay friends.
  • Apocalypse How:
    • Class 5. The website's storyline information states in Chapter 2 that a mysterious virus wipes out all sentient life on Earth, except for robots.
    • Timeline depicts a Class 0 when an earthquake destroys a major power plant in Taiwan and renders a large chunk of the country, especially capital city Taipei, uninhabitable. It fortunately recovers in two centuries' time, with vegetation and farming taking back the city ruins.
  • Bonus Feature Failure: The "Alive" songs don't track your TP records.
  • Concept Album:
    • The "Chapter K" album tells a story inspired by the cover art for the song "Holy Knight", while the "Alive" album gives us the main plot of the game.
    • Chapter T tells the history of Taiwan, where Rayark is based, starting from 6 million BC and going to the present, and then continuing into a future where Taiwan falling back onto the use of nuclear energy causes a national disaster.
  • Double Unlock: A crowdsourced example; every 100,000 downloads would reveal a new chapter, but it would be made available as a DLC chapter until 200,000 downloads later. This is no longer the case as of 8.0.
  • Downloadable Content: Chapter R: Retro, the Prologue chapter, and the Timeline chapter are all separate purchases, at 4.99 USD each. The entire package totals up to 16.96 USD, including the initial game purchase.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: Earlier chapters have a lot of charts with half-speed scanlines, unlike more recent chapters where almost every song has a normal-speed scanline. The 7.0 update revised a lot of early-chapter charts so that they are not only different, but also have normal-speed scanlines.
  • Easter Egg:
    • In Chapter R, each song has an alternate title shown when it is the next or previous song available for selection. When arranged in order of first to last song in the chapter, the first letter of each title spells out the phrase "SHOTA4EVER".
    • At the end of the Hard chart to "Entrance", the drag notes form a dollar sign.
    • "Area 184 -Platinum Mix-"'s Hard chart spells out "AREA 184" in drag notes, followed by a "P" in click notes (representing the song's artist, Persona).
  • Flawless Victory: Completing a song with all Perfects, and therefore the maximum score of 1 million, earns you the "Million Master" rank. Averted with getting 100% TP, which does not get its own flashy animation.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: The game has sync issues on certain devices. As many rhythm game players know, having the song be out of sync with the chart is very, very bad. Fortunately, an update allows players to calibrate timing offsets.
  • Green Aesop: The Timeline chapter seems like a retelling of Taiwan's history through visual art and music...right up until the song representing the year 2057, "Protest". Faced with a an energy crisis coupled with tech corporations' demand for energy, the government of Taiwan falls back onto nuclear energy rather than alternative sources, resulting in protests across the country. This leads to disaster two years later when a major earthquake destroys the nuclear power plant and causes radioactive material to spread throughout the country, forcing mass evacuations from the capital city of Taipei. Eventually, natural fauna grows back after two centuries of human non-interference and nature is allowed to thrive in the area once again.
  • Human Popsicle: Although, as described above, most lifeforms were killed by the virus, there were a few survivors who froze themselves in cryo-pods. "Another Me" depicts the robotic Vanessa finding her human body frozen.
  • Interface Spoiler: If, after completing all listed songs in a chapter, the "cleared songs" counter does not show that you've played every song in the chapter, it means there's hidden songs in the chapter.
  • Marathon Level:
    • Many songs from Cytus Alive, but most notably:
      • "Vanessa" from Chapter V, which is seven minutes long, the longest song in the entire game. Despite this, however, its Hard chart of 1564 notes still doesn't have the highest notecount of any chart in the game; that honor goes to "L2 (ver.B)" on Hard, which is four minutes shorter but beats "Vanessa" by six notes.
      • "Disaster" and "Buried" from Chapter Two and Nine come close at six minutes.
      • On the flipside, there's The New World in Chapter Ten, which gives us the grand total of one note after the entirety of the credits in both easy and hard.
    • Outside of Alive, three of the longest songs are "Scherzo" (4:11), "STORIA" (4:14), and "The Long Years" (5:00).
    • While nowhere near as long as the above examples, many songs in the Million chapter clock in at 3-4 minutes when other chapters' songs typically clock in at the arcade-esque length of 1:45-2:30.
  • Number of the Beast: "Future World" on Hard has 666 notes.
  • Public Domain Soundtrack: Chapter S: Symphony, which consists of remixes and arranges of classical songs.
  • Retraux: Chapter R: Retro, as the name suggests. It consists entirely of chiptunesnote . Each song has a pixel art eyecatch.
  • Rock Me, Amadeus!:
    • The "Symphony" chapter comprises arranged of classical songs, with many of them being rock arranges.
    • "The Blocks We Loved" by KillerBlood is an arrangement of Russian folk song "Korobeiniki", otherwise known as "that Tetris song".
  • Scoring Points:
    • The standard point system, which is based on your note timing and, to an extent, your combo. As there is no Life Meter, your score is used to determine whether you clear or fail a song; you need 700,000 points or better for a clear.
    • The "TP" system, which was implemented in repsonse to players complaining that the game's Perfect window is too wide. When you get a Perfect, you will get one of two different splashes: a Perfect with a green-and-orange splash, and a Perfect with a black splash; the former gives out more TP (100% of per-note TP) than the latter (70%). A Good will give out 30%, and anything less gives out 0%. TP is not combo-based, so where you make mistakes is irrelevant.
  • Secret Level:
    • Some songs on the song select screen have splash screens that can be interacted with to unlock hidden songs. Many of these will require a guide to figure out. "Entrance", "∅", "L" are notable in that their splash screens hide two hidden songs each.
    • Differing from the usual Secret Levels in Cytus, Chapter K requires you to play through the first eight songs before you unlock the ninth and tenth song respectively. And yes, you have to play the ninth before you unlock the tenth.
  • Shareware: The Android free version has a "cooldown" period prior to each song. The cooldown becomes longer the longer you continously play songs. Buying the full version lifts the cooldown mechanic.
  • Shout-Out: "The Blocks We Loved" is none other than a remix of the original Tetris theme!
  • Title Theme Drop: "Loom", the current title theme, can be played in-game by going to the splash screen for Chapter 7 and tapping on either of the cleared-song counters.
  • A Winner Is You: The game treats you getting a Million Master rank with a special animation and a "Master" medal, but getting 100% TP? You get the same treatment as a standard Master rank and nothing else.
  • Zero-Effort Boss: The title track of chapter X, The New World, is very long and has all of one note at the end. Subverted, in that although you just need that one Perfect to get the Million Master rank, it is just as easy to fail by mistiming or missing that note.note 

Cytus is awesome! I got rank S on TV Tropes/Hard and scored 999,732!