With the iconic DJ duo Daft Punk announcing their separation many fans are asking what could have been. One of those fans is Q Entertainment producer James Mielke, who logged on to Twitter to reflect on how the team almost managed to make a Lumines musical game with Daft Punk.
Originally presented as "Daft Punk Lumines", Mielke and Q Entertainment had managed to get the green light for the project by Ubisoft in 2010. By that time, Daft Punk had already become a household name in electronic music circles – and only would grow with the release of the soundtrack Tron Legacy and the album Random Access Memories.
Mielke originally wrote about the genesis of the project in a Gamasutra blog post in 2012 describing how his journey to restart the Lumines franchise (originally a PSP release title) o put in contact with Daft Punk.  “What I wanted to do was put the player in the pyramid-shaped DJ booth of the Daft Punk that they traveled with and – like Daft Punk – stir up the crowd by performing great combos at Lumines,” wrote Mielke. “Everything in the game would be Daft Punkified, from the HUD, the soundtrack, to the audacious sound environment found in his 2007 live album Alive, to special effects, real-time lighting, jumping crowd in 3D, etc.”
Despite having already met Q Entertainment's creative director, Tetsuya Mizuguchi (and being a fan of Mizuguchi's work on Rez), some obstacles prevented Daft Punk from committing to the project. According to Mielke, DJs did not want to use old music, had just finished production on Tron Legacy and were starting to work on Random Access Memories between the collaborations of Adidas and Star Wars. This forced Q Entertainment to move in a different direction with what eventually became the Lumines Electronic Symphony.
"[Daft Punk] were big fans of Rez, so that basically gave us an" entrance "to talk to them," Mielkes told IGN. "Ubisoft was also very active in involving them and the conversation was definitely friendly. Their manager at Daft Arts, Paul, informed us that, although they were big fans of Mizuguchi-san's work, they didn't want to do anything nostalgic trip. Of course, if they wanted to, they would certainly have done it by now. "
" But, having met Mizuguchi-san, they were very open to collaboration, as long as the time was right for them and if the concept was right. challenging expectations. Unfortunately, Q Entertainment did not live long enough to see this come to fruition. I am glad I just had a conversation with them about a collaboration, although, even if it was by proxy. I was able to appreciate that then, and even more now When you are as sought after as Daft Punk, why do anything when you can do the most amazing things instead? If I had known this in advance, I would have designed something much more crazy.
"This u hopeful that they will eventually meet. I can already imagine how cool 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. "
For Mielke, Daft Punk's impact on music and culture goes far, far beyond simply making some incredible tracks.
"Maybe they were chopping things up and just decided it wasn't interesting anymore," said Mielkes. "Deadmau5, Marshmello and even Squarepusher are all rocking helmets today. When everyone starts doing what you've been doing for decades, maybe it just isn't cool anymore, and at the very least, Daft Punk has always been cool."
Despite Daft Punk's distinct lack of tracks, IGN gave Lumines Electronic Symphony a 9 out of 10 calling it fun and addictive.
Daft Punk hasn't totally missed the video game train, however. The duo provided 11 original mixes from their catalog for DJ Hero 2009.
Oh, well. At least we will always have Derezzed .
Joseph Knoop is a writer / producer / human, after all, at IGN.