“Kickbeat” is one of those unique games that comes almost out of nowhere, but is hard to pass by when seen. The game is a rhythm tap game akin to Hatsune Miku, but instead of pop idols “Kickbeat” gives players kung-fu, wrestlers and bright visuals.
For Windows PC, Playstation 3 and PS Vita
Review Score: 4/5
On paper “Kickbeat” doesn’t seem anything too special until it’s played. Bright visuals, a kung-fu storyline and quirky character designs make the game a different experience.
Rhythm tapping isn’t just pressing and memorizing patterns this time around, as the screen is set up with your character center stage and surrounded on all sides by enemies. The enemies, which can differ from Mexican luchadores to Japanese ninjas, circle around you until they get close enough and you press the corresponding button on the gamepad to attack.
Attack frequency comes from difficulty and song beat which provides a fair challenge to players. The enemy placement may change in playthroughs but the beat doesn’t make familiar songs any easier.
Higher difficulties take away visual cues and warning, making each fight harder to predict as the frequency of attacks and number of enemies increase. The higher difficulties also force players to really listen to the beat and heighten their awareness to enemy placement.
“Kickbeat” also allows players to bring in custom music to play, but the beat detection is decent at best since players have to manually tap the beat of the first several seconds of the song in order for the game to map it.
“Kickbeat” is a fun simple rhythm game with a ton of replay ability, but a lackluster beat detection in the custom music might be a turnoff for hardcore rhythm players, especially after they exhaust the handful of included songs. The game also forces players to play to unlock survival and other play modes.
Overall, this is a fun rhythm game that does something new, even if it suffers from a few minor problems. I give “Kickbeat” a 4 out 5.