Zen Studios has been keeping busy with multiple pinball titles across multiple platforms. However, their next game is certainly unlike anything the team has done before. KickBeat is a "music combat" game for Vita, and its odd combination of martial arts and rhythm gameplay has us intrigued.
According to Zen's Neil Sorens, the beat-matching central to KickBeat is "not complex and will be familiar to fans of the music game genre," in spite of its unique look.
"We got rid of the bars, arrows, and button icons that other music games rely on for action cues and replaced them with fully 3D animated characters," Sorens explained to the PlayStation.Blog. "Instead of just seeing characters in the background moving to a preset script as eye candy while the actual gameplay takes place in an abstract 2D interface, you actually control and react to those 3D characters."
Enemy attacks are synced to the beat of the music in the background. To defeat an enemy, you press a button corresponding to their direction in sync with the music. For example, when an enemy attacks from the right, you press right on the D-Pad or the Circle button. Simultaneous attacks involve pressing simultaneous buttons.
The game will ship with eighteen tracks from names as eclectic as Rob Zombie to Shen Yi, a Taiwanese rapper. However, if that doesn't suit your taste, you'll be able to import your own music into the game. "Just put in a couple pieces of info, customize a couple settings to your taste, and the game creates a new level for you to play."
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