Being the cheap gamer I am, I set off on a mission to EB Games to find a game under $12.00 for my Playstation 2. What I found was a game called Technic Beat, with the price of $9.99, brand new. I’m usually not a rhythm game fan. In fact, the only rhythm game I can stand to play is DDR, thanks to the dance pad. Most rhythm games need expensive peripherals to go with the game, such as a dance pad, or a guitar, but Technic Beat needs none of these. All you need is your Playstation 2 controller. While glancing at the back cover of Technic Beat, I spotted something that really caught my eye. ‘Over 30 Namco Licensed Songs!’ I am a huge fan of gaming music, and I loved Namco’s Arcade themes, so I decided to pick this game up.
This psychedelic rhythm game gives you well over 50 songs to choose to play with, and six characters to play as. Each character has its own abilities. Bot (a robot, for those who can’t tell), for example, can activate markers with his lasers. There is also Knitty, who can carry markers around. The songs included in this game are all original scores and techno arcade remixes of classic Namco songs. Namco songs include: Dig Dug, Pacmania, Galaxian 3, and New Rally X. The soundtrack for Technic Beat is an extremely well done soundtrack. The soundtrack has surpassed many rhythm games I’ve played in the past.
Beating a level can be pretty simple… depending on the difficulty of a song. Game play is fast, hard, and bizarre. Depending on the song, the speeds of the markers that pop up vary. Pacmania, for example, is a truly troublesome level to play because of how fast the markers pop up and how many markers are on the screen at once. You really need to practice this song in Free Play mode to understand when the markers appear on the screen.
When you activate a marker, it adds a part to a song. Depending on how you play, the song changes both its speed and sound. Activating a marker too soon can cause the song to miss a beat or add an off pitch tone. Activating a marker perfectly can make the song sound amazing.
You will definitely need to practice and stay sharp while playing this game. There will be rings inside of the marker, moving outward. You will need to move to the inside of the marker. The object of the game is to match up the inside ring with the marker on the outside and tap Square, when they match up evenly. If that doesn’t sound difficult enough, Markers will pop up at different speeds and in different numbers. If there are two markers that come up at the same time, you have to act fast and set both of them off at the same time.
While playing a level, there are tons of effects that happen on the screen. If you chose play on an aquarium you can see fish move underneath the dance floor. For some odd reason, the developers decided to stick firework like explosions everywhere. Music notes, lighting effects, and flashing lights will be popping up everywhere on the screen.
Well of course graphics won’t be a high point in this game, since it is so cheap. Everything is pretty smooth and muddy looking, but it’s not so bad. You won’t really notice while playing this game at all, since it is, after all, the game play that counts the most in a rhythm game.
There are many modes to play this game with. There’s the normal Arcade Mode, Free Mode, Challenge Mode, Level Certification Mode, Sudden Death Mode, and Replay Mode. Arcade Mode is the classic way of playing, with easy, or medium, game play styles. There is also a Channel Style available in Arcade Mode, which gives you a specific list of four songs to play. Free Mode is Arcade Mode, except without the worry about starting your game over after you lose. You can record your music in Free Mode to play again in Replay Mode. Replay Mode will play your song over for you with a cool sound controller interface. Level Certification Mode rates how good or bad you did on a certain course. Sudden Death Mode is a big challenge to play. If you get one wrong note with a marker, that’s it, game over. You’ll need extra practice for this. Last but not least, there is Challenge Mode. This is a very fun mode to play. You’ll get certain tasks to complete from a to-do list type interface, such as activating three markers in a row perfectly, or getting three marker chains in a row.
Technic Beat is a great game to use to relax. Bored of playing your regular FPS or Action games? You’ll have a lot of fun playing this for relief. If you’re not a big fan on rhythm games, or just starting out on rhythm games, I recommend finding another game such as Dance Dance Revolution. Technic Beat has okay graphics, fantastic music, and a very, very low price. This is a great find for bargain hunters like myself.
Technic Beat is rated E is rated E (Everyone) by the ESRB.