REZ

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(Redirected from Rez)
This article is about REZ, the video game, and not Rez Band (Resurrection Band).
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REZ
Missing image
Rezbox.jpg
US PS2 box art for REZ

Developer(s) United Game Artists
Publisher(s) SEGA
Release date(s) January 8, 2002
Genre Music
Mode(s) Single player
Rating(s) ESRB: Everyone (E)
Platform(s) PlayStation 2, Dreamcast

REZ, formerly known as K-Project, is a video game released by SEGA in 2002 for the Sony PlayStation 2. The name 'Rez' is taken from the title of a track by British trance music group Underworld. It was originally released on the Sega Dreamcast, but only in Japan and European markets, and is a fairly rare and very sought after game on the Dreamcast, mainly due to the many defective pressings of the game. The game was developed by SEGA's United Game Artists division, produced and conceptualized by Tetsuya Mizuguchi. It was very critically acclaimed, but did not get much commercial attention in the United States, partly due to its very esoteric gameplay experience. The game is set in a vast computer network where a female AI program named Eden is lost, and must be found by the player by navigating through a series of levels, but the plot is really not the focus of this game. The K-Project name and much of the game's visual and synaestesia inspiration comes from the Russian painter Kandinsky.

The gameplay is most strongly related to the shooter genre, with the player being portrayed as a figure moving fairly linearly ("on rails," so to speak) through levels of enemies. The controls are very simple, with the analog pad controlling a target that must be moved over the enemies while holding down the fire button. Releasing the button launches projectiles at the enemies and destroys them, and there are two power-ups; one that fires at all nearby enemies when triggered, and one that accumulates to transform your character into more powerful forms. There are bosses at the end of every level, which provide more of a challenge, and upon completion of the full "storyline" there are many bonus features that can be unlocked by the player by performing certain tasks.

Marketing information for the game at the time of its release focused on its qualities of "synaesthesia," the association of different senses and stimuli with each other, which is a sensation experienced naturally by some people, and reported by many users of LSD and other hallucinogens. While playing REZ, your character soars over psychedelic futuristic vistas to the hypnotic beats of trance techno. The game is indeed very integrated with sight and sound: a thumping vibration in the Dual Shock 2 controller or Dreamcast rumble packs keep time with the music, every time the player releases the fire button sounds are made that synchronize exactly with the beat of the song, and as the player progresses further into a level, the songs become more layered and intense.

REZ should not be played by anyone suffering from epilepsy, as it contains many flashing lights and images, and could trigger a seizure.

Trance vibrator

A "Special Package" version of the game was sold in Japan only, including a USB device called a trance vibrator, [1] (http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/11.05/play.html?pg=6) which pulses in time with the music. While not explicitly marketed as a sex toy or masturbatory aid, it has enjoyed considerable success in that area; the devices are available from various aftermarket retailers for (as of 2004) approximately twenty-five USD. In contrast, any USB-controlled sex toys on the market are currently being retailed for over a hundred.

Reverse-engineering efforts to allow the trance vibrator to attach to - and be controlled by - a PC have been successfully executed in Japan, and Microsoft Windows XP now officially recognizes the Trance Vibrator when it's plugged into a computer.

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