BABY UNIVERSE was released Sept/98 by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.
It's a totally unique image-making tool developed by Sony and produced by Fumiya Fujii the renown Japanese artist and musician. Baby Universe allows PlayStation owners to create and interact with three-dimensional kaleidoscopes. Owners can select patterns that fit their own individual style and then synthesize them with their favourite music. It contains five different 3D Kaleidoscope modes: Jewel Case Mode - where owners can select two jewels form a selection of sixteen. Console Mode- where the owner can ‘dress’ the jewels with different graphic expressions such as movement, colour cycles and drawings. Sound effects and volume can also be adjusted in this mode. SoundScope Mode - where the owner can select from ten graphical patterns. The waves react to the digital data on a music CD and create amazing ‘kaleidoscope graphics. Colours and frame rate can also be selected in this mode. Electric Scope Mode - where kaleidoscopes can be painted with seven different colours. Psychedelic Scope - where ‘players’ can view and appreciate their kaleidoscopes in 2 dimensions.

This game has already made a big impact in Japan and is proof once again that Sony is pushing the boundaries of game development.

Developer: Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. Genre: Music/Adventure : No of Players : 1
Peripherals: Analog Controller, , Memory Card

Review follows:

Kaleidoscope with sound
Baby Universe
Function: Interactive pattern generator
Requirements:Sony Playstation
Supplied by:
Ster Kinekor Interactive

In short: A dynamic addition to every arsenal of mass-appeal video effects generators
What does the name "Baby Universe" have to do with the complex 3D shapes morphing and rotating on my TV screen?

Having not long since stopped frequenting all-night multimedia parties and venues whose business it was to dazzle slightly crazed partygoers, it is easy to imagine at least one application for Baby Universe. 3D polygons in throbbing psychedelic colours which can be manipulated and rotated in real-time using a standard playstation controller is every rave VJ's (video jockey) dream come true.

Even better, the movement and morphing of the on-screen shapes can be set to synchronise, move and mutate "magically" with your favourite music CD. By hooking up your CD player to your Playstation you can use the music to "generate" shapes, colours and movement.

Beyond that it would be hard to imagine any child, teenager or adult being engaged by the simplistic nature of this activity for more than a few minutes. And the fun would only last this long because of the catchy, ambient techno soundtrack which adds to the atmospherics of the kaleidoscope of shapes and colours floating magically on your screen.

Lacking any real "reward" for the time spent generating and swivelling the kaleidoscopic shapes on the screen, it is unlikely that this product will catch on in the home games market. But as a multimedia tool to be added to an arsenal of mass-appealb video effects and psychedelic, synthetic 3D imagery Baby Universe is a must. Don't start your next party without it.

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