Horses are GOOOOOOOOOOOO!
What do you get when you cross the pet raising aspects of Nintendogs with the tapping and tracing insanity of Elite Beat Agents? Surprisingly, the answer is a game called Horse Life, from D3 and Neko Entertainment. You'll play a budding equestrian raising your first horse. All the parts of a virtual pet game are here. You can train, feed, pet, and brush your horse. You can also buy all sorts of accessories and such. The experience is very similar to Nintendo's flagship Nintendogs title, minus the ability to talk to your new found friend and teach it tricks.
Instead, you can train your horse to become a champion. A series of training courses will teach you all sorts of riding maneuvers. This could have been a very boring aspect, but the designers were clearly inspired by Nintendo's own Elite Beat Agents, the crazy rhythm game that involves tapping the DS touch screen in time with a song. The rhythm aspect isn't in Horse Life, but the dot-tapping and line-tracing sure are. While riding the horse, you'll perform all sorts of maneuvers by playing a little version of EBA. Dots appear on the screen and must be tapped. Arrows also appear, and they must be traced. Meeting this task causes your horse to do the appropriate maneuver. There are all sorts of different tricks to learn, which should keep the game fairly fresh. Once you've learned them, you can use these tricks on walks through the forest or in competition.
Horse Life is sure to be a hit with equestrian enthusiasts all over. The fact that the developers have put time into creating a solid gameplay system, instead of churning out a quick piece of shovelware, bodes extremely well for the game. Horse Life releases Nov 6 and is rated E.