Eat Beat Who?
Eat Beat Dead Spike-San could very well be one of the worst titles for a game I have ever heard. What makes it so bad? The fact that this title is actually a spin-off of a relatively well known franchise, but as someone who plays said franchise I didn’t realise from the title it was related to anything. What franchise am I talking about? None other than the spectacular Blazblue series developed by Arc System Works. Honesty it’s the equivalent of Nintendo naming Donkey Konga “Go Gorilla Drum Beat to the Rhythm!”
Eat Beat Dead Spike-San is a rhythm game that comes in at a very low price of $6.99. Had I known there was a rhythm game featuring the Blazblue soundtrack you’d be reading this review a few weeks ago. The story is…nonexistent. The reason for what is happening is that Ragna is always losing so to get stronger Dead Spike decides to eat as much as he possibly can. Why? Just to be wacky and quirky I suppose. Of course you won’t watch Ragna clash with Hazama or Jin. This game is all about keeping the rhythm going.
A key feature of any rhythm game besides the music would have to be the inputs required to play. This title opts for a simpler method of simply using “L” and “R” then also spamming them both together for certain notes. Personally I was a little upset by this route. As overall the difficulty of the title felt a little lacking. There are no mind melting tracks that seem downright impossible to clear due to this method, but given the nature of the genre this flaw is somewhat overlooked due to the attempts of going for those high scores with a string of perfect inputs.
A unique feature added in is the ability to make use of “overdrive” the overdrive meter will fill up as you play through and when activated you will take no damage from missing a note and will also gain a higher score. It’s a nice way to add a layer of strategy to the game as choosing when to activate it to maximize your score is important. Sadly though lacking any online features the incentive to try and get the highest score loses some appeal. Then of course you can pick between easy, medium and hard for each song, but honestly you shouldn’t struggle with medium and easy mode.
Next up is to have a look at the songs present. Eat Beat Dead Spike-San boasts a selection of 20 songs which for a game that costs $6.99 is quite generous. For those who aren’t familiar with the Blazblue soundtrack rest assured as it is spectacular and to choose only 20 tracks to add is no easy feat. The vast majority of the tracks are the Continuum Shift themes for the characters. Bullet Dance, Gluttony Fang, Alexandrite, Lust Sin and Rebellion are all there and sound fantastic. I must say I was shocked that they didn’t have Under Heaven Destruction, but as said they seemed to have focused on adding character themes, with the Central Fiction theme added on top.
The presentation here is quite different to the typical Blazblue look. Instead of the beautiful anime design for the stages and characters the developers have chosen to go with a very simplistic style, which I am not sure how to describe. It is to be expected though from a game that I can only assume had a very small budget. It isn’t as nice to look at compared to its source material, but it is bright and charming and gets the job done.
There isn’t really a great deal more to say about Dead Beat Spike-San. The average full priced rhythm game doesn’t boast that many features. All songs are unlocked from the start, but require you to beat them on medium to play on hard. There are achievements, but they are pretty throwaway for the most part. You get “The Gorilla Fate is Turning” by simply starting the game and one for looking at the credits. Then some for scoring S rank on all songs depending on the mode which then will unlock you a gallery picture. You can choose to have Ragna, Hazama, or Carl as your avatar and you can…err…watch the credits?
Simply put there are not a lot of bells and whistles added to this game and the ones that are aren’t exactly impressive. The simplistic input might put off hardcore rhythm game fans, but with these things taken in to account I can’t deny that I am having a blast with Eat Beat Dead Spike-San. Its low difficulty is balanced out with trying to get high scores and the tracks are brilliant.
System reviewed on: Nintendo Switch.
Disclaimer: A review code for Eat Beat Dead Spike-san was provided by Arc System Works.