Video Game / Lumines
World of silence, creepin' sightless time
Port of sadness, sleepin' flightless mind
World of silence, blinkin' farthest light
Road of brightness, I will get there
And shinin'
Mondo Grosso, "Shinin'"

Lumines is a series of Falling Blocks puzzle games started in 2005 by famed Space Channel 5 designer Tetsuya Mizuguchi, as one of the first PlayStation Portable titles and the first one under his new game label, Q Entertainment. The premise is much more simplistic when compared to other games like it...blocks fall in 2x2 squares, and the player can only score points by matching up squares of the same color (2x2 or larger). As the music plays in the background, a timeline sweeps the joined blocks away and adds lights and sounds to the mix. Players advance through levels, or "skins" (which changes the background, music, score display, sound effects, even the block appearances) and the tempo of the new songs switches up frequently, requiring the player to stay on their toes as things get harder and harder.

Lumines proved very popular in Japan, selling more than half a million copies since its initial release. It also garnered Greatest Hits status in North America and Europe, prompting a mobile phone version of the game created by Gameloft. A direct sequel was made the following year, and it was later joined by Lumines Plus for the PlayStation 2 and Lumines Live for Xbox 360's Live Arcade. A port of Lumines 2 (with some skins and VS modes removed, plus the Lumines Live interface) was released for the PC, distributed by Wild Tangent Games and Steam. In 2009, a PlayStation 3 version of the game called Lumines Supernova was released on the Playstation Network, which contained a new mode called Dig Down mode, and new skins (including one based on LittleBigPlanet). Lumines Touch Fusion was released for iOS in 2009. A PlayStation Vita installment, Lumines Electronic Symphony, was released in 2012. Lumines Remastered will be released for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Steam and Xbox One on May 2018.

Tropes used in Lumines:

  • Boring, but Practical: You can play the first few level perfectly using a very simple strategy.
  • Broken Record: In the PSP version of the first Lumines, a section of the song will repeat unless you form a block for it to erase. One reviewer said this effect, when combined with the already-repetitive lyrics of the first skin "Shinin'", "almost turned me into Jack from THE Shining."
  • Cap: The original Lumines caps out at 999,999 points; your reward for achieving the cap is a new skin. Lumines II adds more digits.
  • Drought Level of Doom: "Day Dream" in Lumines Supernova, with a time-line so painfully slow you're lucky if you can clear any blocks. Similarly, "I hear the music in my soul" from the original takes 4 measures for the playhead to do a full sweep, and the moderately-slow BPM doesn't help much either.
  • Dueling Games: with Meteos
  • Falling Blocks
  • Licensed Game: Many of the tracks are licensed. Lumines II is notable for having big-name Western musicians like Beck and Gwen Stefani.
  • Mondegreen: Mondo Grosso's English is pretty good, but the first line of "Shinin'" sounds an awful lot like "Word of Silas, creepy Silas Stein."
  • Mood Whiplash: The skins in Lumines are made to incite some kind of feeling, via 'synesthesia'; Usually these manifest in emotions, and as such can seriously flip-flop between a few if certain skins are used.
  • Musical Gameplay
  • Puzzle Game
  • Shout-Out: Lumines Supernova contains a LittleBigPlanet themed skin.

Shinin', Shinin', Shinin', Shinin', Shinin', Shinin', Shinin', Shinin'...