Sep 8, 2013This was a surprisingly good game! The controls are simple and the music is enjoyable. There's only a handful of songs, but there's actually a decent number venues. The story mode is great and even adds new cut-scenes on your second playthrough. Nothing compares to the level where you combat a helicopter to the beat of Rob Zombie's Scum of the Earth. You can even play couch co-op in Free Play mode. The only complaints I have against the game is that the harder difficulties are frankly impossible, so you won't be able to unlock new characters or costumes and most trophies are literally unobtainable. Furthermore, the Custom Track import feature is a mess-- nothing syncs up correctly, and playing imported songs is just unsatisfying.
Otherwise, it was a great purchase for $10. I would gladly pay for a sequel or DLC for this game to play more songs.… Expand
Sep 8, 2013(Copied and pasted from my review of the Vita version the versions are identical aside from a few graphical differences and a throwaway local multiplayer mode for PS3)
Let's get this out of the way: Kickbeat is a classic beat-matching rhythm game. If you don't like those, you probably won't like this one, either. It will kick your butt until you get used to the controls and the novel way that the rhythm cues appear. And like other beat-matching games, it becomes a "Zen" (haha) experience once you've developed enough skill to play at high difficulty levels and feel like a total badass.
The things that KickBeat does differently is that instead of a note highway or other stuff slapped on top of the action in the background, the fighting action IS the note highway. Each enemy comes from one of 4 directions, and you press the button for that direction when the enemy is close enough. In the easiest difficulty level, there are icons on the ground that light up when the enemy can be hit. This helps you get used to the positioning and the controls. But at higher difficulty levels, they are gone, so don't get too used to them. (Note: the icons show the X/Square/O/Triangle buttons, but you can also use the d-pad with your left hand too, which helps when there's lots of enemies.) There's also a double-tap control to collect powerups and chained enemies where you hold the button down for the first one and let go for the second.
Even though the controls seem pretty simple, like other rhythm games, it's about how they're matched to the music that makes it interesting. Punching guys to the beat feels really good and it's surprising that this is the first game to do it (that I know of). When the difficulty ramps up and your guy is flying around destroying mobs of enemies while the heavy, aggressive soundtrack blasts out at you, it gets your blood pumping and your fingers flying. It's like playing out a fight scene from a movie.
The other cool part of the game is the Beat Your Music mode where you can use your own music in the game. I've tried a few songs and some worked really well, but some older ones where the beat wasn't steady got off track and weren't as fun. Electronic music and rap generally works best since it's easier to tap out the beat and it doesn't usually change beat since it's done with computers and drum machines. The tracks that it makes aren't quite as good as the ones in the game that were done by hand but it's still awesome to have an unlimited supply of songs in the game. This is the first game that I know of since Dance Factory to let you use your own music in a beat-matching game (Audiosurf isn't beat matching, though it is still cool) and I have to give them props for how well they made it work, even with its limitations.
Overall you can tell that they wanted to do something new with the rhythm genre and give the game lots of replay value, and they succeeded. There are a few flaws like some of the note charts I think are off in places, and having to unlock everything, but all in all it's a very satisfying game if you are willing to put the time and effort in to get past the initial learning curve. I would give the game an 8.5 or 9 normally but because of the innovative approach and the fact that they tried something original in a genre I love, I'm giving them some bonus points.… Expand
Oct 1, 2013Kickbeat is definitely a unique game, the graphics are good, the controls are good, and overall its a fine game. My beef is the extremely unforgiving difficulty. The game requires a ton of practice before you can even complete the first song. The tutorial is in-depth but it just doesn't prepare you for the brutal butt kicking you get when you try the story mode the first time. Its extremely aggravating. I love Zen Studio, they created awesome pinball games, and mini golf games but they ramped up the difficulty a bit too much for beginners in Kickbeat. I give it a 6 because of difficulty, but if your willing to put in the practice and you have a ton of patience, then you'll find much to like in Kickbeat.… Expand
Sep 9, 2013Zen Studios have to be given some respect in taking a stale genre and breathing new life into it. KickBeat is a good game and it does provide good entertainment, however the game is crying out for more songs in the Story mode as imported songs don’t feel as well synced as the in game music.