The Average Gamer

Bit.Trip Saga Review (3DS)

The Bit.Trip series is one of the most unique gaming franchises available on WiiWare. Now, all six titles have been bundled into a compelling package for both Wii and 3DS. Sadly, the 3DS counterpart to the Wii’s Bit.Trip Complete will leave players feeling short-changed, which is a shame considering the quality of the games included.

Bit.Trip Complete and Bit.Trip Saga have released on Wii and 3DS respectively, both include Beat, Core, Void, Runner, Fate and Flux. But, the 3DS version contains none of the bonus content that the Wii version includes. No bonus soundtrack and no additional levels, and strangely the 3DS version is more expensive. This doesn’t do justice to the games included in Saga, which are still as great as they were when they were first released.

The standout feature of this game is its amazing soundtrack, ranging from gritty dubstep-like tunes of Fate to the happy, melodic numbers of Runner. The music of any rhythm-based game is crucial, and Bit.Trip absolutely nails it.

The series is oozing with old-school flavour. Each game is based on a very simple premise, but don’t expect an easy ride to the finish. Each game requires total concentration and practice if you want to reach the end, or get a decent score. Its crazy that the 3DS version doesn’t support online leaderboards, as most of the games are hi-score based, rendering the final score pointless unless you want to try and beat yourself.

While there are six games in the series, Beat and Flux are very similar Pong-based games. But problems I had with Beat are vastly improved in Flux. Both games are basically one-player Pong, requiring you to move a bar up and down one side of the screen to deflect incoming blocks. The problem with Beat is that the background animations are a huge distraction, making it hard to see the blocks. In Flux, the sharp contrast between the background and blocks makes it much easier to spot the targets. The thumbstick is extremely sensitive, sending the bar flying up and down the screen. I found myself quickly reverting to the touch-screen, which actually felt easier than the Wii-mote’s motion sensor too.

Is the pack worth your investment? That depends on how you look at it. If you already own most or all of the games on WiiWare, no. If you own a Wii and 3DS, Bit.Trip Complete represents better value for money. There’s no excuse for the Wii version to be cheaper than the 3DS version, but have more levels, online leaderboards and a bonus soundtrack.

While these are undoubtedly great games, especially for those with old-school sensibilities, the 3DS version simply doesn’t represent good value at the current price. For 3DS owners, I would wait for a price-drop before picking up this game. I do recommend the Bit.Trip series, as it has addictive games and to be able to play them on the go is great.

For now, avoid, but keep your eye on the sales.

Bit.Trip Saga is out now for 3DS.

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