With iconic DJ duo Daft Punk announcing their breakup, many fans are wondering what it could have been. One such fan is Q Entertainment producer James Mielke, who took to Twitter to reflect on how the team came close to making a Lumines musical game with Daft Punk.
Originally billed as “Daft Punk Lumines”, Mielke and Q Entertainment had managed to get Ubisoft to greenlight the project in 2010. By then, Daft Punk had already become a household name in electronic music circles, and it would only grow with the launch. from the Tron Legacy soundtrack and the Random Access Memories album.
Mielke originally wrote about the genesis of the project in a 2012 Gamasutra blog post, describing how his journey to reboot the Lumines franchise (originally a PSP launch title) brought him into contact with Daft Punk.
“What I wanted to do was put the player in the booth of Daft Punk’s pyramid-shaped DJ booth that they went on tour with and, like Daft Punk, shake up the crowd by performing great combos on Lumines,” Mielke wrote. “Everything in the game was going to be Daft Punkified, from the HUD, the soundtrack, the low aural environment found on their 2007 live album Alive, the special effects, the realtime lighting, the crowd bouncing. in 3D, etc. “
Despite having met Q Entertainment’s creative director Tetsuya Mizuguchi (and being fans of Mizuguchi’s work on Rez), some obstacles prevented Daft Punk from being able to commit to the project. According to Mielke, the DJs didn’t want to use old music, they had just finished production on Tron Legacy and were starting work on Random Access Memories between the Adidas and Star Wars collaborations. This forced Q Entertainment to move in a different direction with what eventually became the Lumines Electronic Symphony.
“[Daft Punk] We were huge Rez fans so he basically gave us a chance to talk to them, “Mielkes told IGN.” Ubisoft was also very active in engaging them, and the conversation was definitely friendly. Their manager at Daft Arts, Paul, informed us that while they were huge fans of Mizuguchi-san’s work, they didn’t want to take any nostalgia trips. Of course, if they had wanted to, surely they could have done it at that time. “
“But having met Mizuguchi-san, they were very open to a collaboration as long as the timing worked for them and the concept defied expectations. Unfortunately, Q Entertainment didn’t live long enough to see that come to fruition. I’m glad I did. Even though I just had a conversation with them about a collaboration, even if it was by proxy. I could appreciate it then, and even more now. When you’re in such demand as Daft Punk, why do anything when you can do things? more amazing instead? If I had known this ahead of time, I would have designed something much crazier.
“I am hopeful that they will eventually reunite. I can already imagine how great the teaser video would be. But thinking about how uncompromising they were in their career, I wouldn’t be surprised if they disappeared like the old rave group. The KLF did it once.” .
For Mielke, Daft Punk’s impact on music and culture goes far beyond just making some amazing tracks.
“Maybe they were undermining things and just decided they weren’t interesting anymore,” Mielkes said. “Deadmau5, Marshmello, even Squarepusher are all rock helmets these days. When everyone starts doing what you’ve been doing for decades, it might not be cool anymore, and if anything, Daft Punk was always great.”
Despite Daft Punk’s clear lack of clues, IGN gave Lumines Electronic Symphony a nine out of 10, calling it fun and addictive.
However, Daft Punk didn’t totally miss the video game train. The duo provided 11 original mixes from their catalog for DJ Hero 2009.
Oh good. At least we’ll always have Derezzed.
Joseph Knoop is a writer / producer / human after all for IGN.