Hands-on Review: The X Factor 2008 Namco Bandai Mobile Game

We want to give you a quick insight about the all new mobile phone game “The X Factor 2008” from the brilliant Namco Bandai. We were sent a Sony Ericsson K800i from Nelson Bostock Communications to test out this new mobile game.

First of all and we have to be honest and did at first ask for The X Factor 2008 game to be sent to our Apple iPhone 3G, but we received an email saying that this was not possible and asked us if we had any other device. Anyway the company did send us the Sony Ericsson K800i which is good.

Now got to admit after playing games on the Apple iPhone 3G which is just amazing we thought how the hell can a game on a normal bog-standard mobile phone compare to the awesome iPhone, the games are far more superior and much more enticing. Well we was wrong, ok to be honest the graphics of this new game (The X Factor 2008 from Namco Bandai) is pretty bland, and we mean really bland but the gameplay is addictive. God damn this game, so annoying, so addictive.

I looked at the game and thought “You have got to be serious, there is no way on earth I will play this game”, well Namco Bandai we need to meet so I can shake the hands of the creators, when getting this game we recommend you look beyond the graphics. We are still playing it now, this is such an awesome game and we love it.

Check out the info below of how to purchase the game, how to play the game, and of course the full press release as well.


The official X Factor mobile phone game
COMPETE JUST AS IN THE REAL X FACTOR TV SHOW TO EARN THE JUDGES’ RESPECT AND WIN THE PUBLIC’S VOTES TO BECOME A STAR! Available on 3, Vodafone, Orange, O2 and T-Mobile. No subscription necessary. Standard SMS rates apply. You will be able to confirm the purchase after receiving a text message. After sending your SMS you will receive a confirmation message which directs you to your automatically detected operator site to download the game.

Game prices are between £5 and £5.99 depending on your operator. A download charge may apply depending on your contract type.


Basic Controls
Directional button – Move cursor, change selected options in menus, Character Creation and navigate Progress screen and Training area.

Use the numeric keypad 1-9 to play the 5 different mini-games in training, rehearsal and the main performance, match the numbers to those onscreen.

Softkeys are context sensitive, allowing you to choose confirm or back out of options and screens, or access a pause menu, depending on where you are in the game.
Character Creation

Choose a gender.

After this press the 0 key at any point to randomly generate a character.

Please select a body by pressing left and right. You can change skin tones by pressing up and down. Once you have made your selection, please press ok.

Please select some eyes by pressing left and right and then press ok.

Select a nose by pressing left and right and press ok.

Please select a mouth by pressing left and right and press ok.

Please select a hair style by pressing left and right. You can change the hair colour by pressing up and down. Press ok to confirm your desired hair style.

Please enter the name of your contestant between 2 and 7 letters long. Press the # key to delete a letter.

Once you have customised your appearance, decide what starting skills your character will specialise in. You have three points to distribute between the 5 skills; you can only assign one point per skill. Depending on your skills some songs will be easier or harder than others to perform. During the game, you will train with your mentor to increase the skills and aid your progress through the game.

Each of the 5 games relates directly to your characters 5 skills.

Rhythm: To score a HIT! Push the corresponding number when the ring around it has shrunk in size and is nearly touching the edge of the number. Watch the numbers flash to the beat, to get into the hit rhythm.

Emotion: To score a HIT! Push the corresponding number when it falls into one of the 3 activation rings, watch the numbers flash to the beat to help get into the hit rhythm.

Breathing: To score a HIT! Push the corresponding number when it is inside the activation ring, watch the numbers flash to the beat to help get into the hit rhythm.

Power: To score a HIT! Push the corresponding number before it drops off the screen. You must press the number only when it flashes to the beat, otherwise you will MISS!

Range: To score a HIT! Push the corresponding numbers only when they flash to the beat! You must work your way through the range going from the lowest numbers to the highest.
Training (Boot Camp and Judges Home)

During the training sessions, you have the opportunity to work on two of your skills relating to the song you’re going to perform in the live show. Your mentor will tell you what song you’re going to perform, and the skills that are important to the song.

Your Mentor will assign one of the skills to train in Mentor Training (click on your mentor), the other you can pick yourself in your Personal Training area (navigate left or right depending on your current location to find this)

As you progress through the game, you will unlock more skills that you can train, giving you the freedom to train and improve in whichever area you feel is best.

Once you’ve completed your training, you can go to straight to the live performance if you’re feeling confident, or you can rehearse in the training room. Rehearsal gives you a chance to practice the full song without the pressure of a live studio audience! Feel free to practice as much as you need until you are ready.

If you’ve failed your training for this round, you might want to retry, you can do this by going to the door and selecting Retry instead of Go to Show.
Live Performance

The pressure is on! During the live performance, you need to score as many hits as you can to accumulate the most votes and see off the fierce competition. Your skill will dictate whether you go through the next round.

If you consistently perform well, the studio manager will activate more effects, making your song that bit more special, boosting public opinion and your popularity score.

You can watch the X Factor bar at the top of the screen as you play — this fills up as you score hits and decreases if you miss. Fill the bar to activate all the studio effects, and rack up a huge score!

The competition is not just about making it through the final — you need to convince the viewing public that you have the X Factor by performing well and giving them a great show every time you step onto the stage. Your popularity score accumulates throughout the rounds, so it’s not enough to save your talents for the final show.

You may win the recording contract, but will your single chart at number 1? The public will decide based on the entertainment you’ve provided!

So listen to your mentor, be diligent with your personal training, rehearse until you’re perfect and then wow the public as the hottest new talent of the year!

The Full Press Release:

Wannabe pop stars have a new audience to impress

London, UK — Didn’t make the grade at the recent The X Factor auditions? Well now there’s a chance to get through to the next round and hit the big time thanks to the launch of ‘The X Factor 2008 – The Mobile Game’, from leading global publisher of mobile games Namco Bandai.

Based on the award-winning entertainment show, ‘The X Factor 2008 – The Mobile Game’ gives mobile phone users the chance to test out their own star credentials on the move.

Following the arrival of the latest The X Factor television series on ITV1, the game allows aspiring performers to create and guide their personalised character through each stage of the show as they build a career towards stardom.

Once through the auditions, players will be tested with challenges to sound good, look great and build strong relationships. Players will be able to perform in various mini-games and choose how to use their free time to reach their ultimate dream of musical fame. As part of the long-road to stardom, players will be faced with challenges such as:

– Choreography —Test your coordination to pull off the right moves in the dance studio
– Singing — Show off those vocal chords to the judges by hitting the right notes at the right time
– Fan Meeting — Ever important, woo your fans and pose for the paparazzi, just don’t get grabbed by any over-zealous fans!
– Fashion Dash — Pick up the latest styles before your opponents to avoid being decked out in the wrong outfits
– Groove — Bang the drums and prove you’ve got rhythm to the industry

As players fight to launch a single and get to number one in the charts, the story is conveyed through magazine articles, text messages from relatives, friends and the media, and fan page comments made by the competition and fans.

With millions of viewers already hooked on finding out if their favourite stars have that extra special something to make it all the way, ‘The X Factor 2008 – The Mobile Game’ gives everyone the chance to try their own hand at making it to the big time when and wherever they are.

Available immediately across all major UK operators, including 3, Vodafone, Orange and T-Mobile, or by texting ‘fame’ to 80100, the new game gives players the chance to show off their own The X Factor credentials without having to step onto a stage.

More information about Namco Bandai Networks Europe, its products and services can be found online at www.namcomobile.com. For more information about The X Factor visit: http://xfactor.itv.com/

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