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PAX '09: Bit.Trip Void impressions


When you ask a normal person on the street what they think of when you say "Rhythm Game", 9 times out of 10 they will probably say Rock Band or Guitar Hero. Not enough people know that the Rhythm Game can be something other than plastic guitars and drums. This is why I love Gaijin Games' Bit.Trip series, they take the simple Rhythm Game concept and turn it completely upside down on it's head.

I play the first two games in the series all the time, I would probably have to say that they are some of my favourite games of this generation so far, so when I found out that the new game, Bit.Trip Void was going to be playable at PAX, I was fucking ecstatic.

Right when the doors opened on Friday, I sprinted over to the Nintendo booth to get my hands on with the game (well, right after Scribblenauts lul), and the WiiWare guy was happy to show me my way around the demo.

As far as I know, the version playable only had one finished level, but I don't think anyone is absolutely positive of this because no one actually finished the whole level. Trust me, this game is tricky.

The gameplay is very simple. You use the Nunchuck's analogue stick to move a big black blob around the screen, while black and white pixels fly onto the screen from different directions and in different patterns.

Your objective is to collect only the black pixels with the blob. As you collect more black pixels in a row, your blob get's bigger, thus making it harder and harder to avoid the white pixels. If you hit a white pixel or miss a black one and let it run off the screen, your combo runs out, and it gets easier to die. You can press A at any time to reset the size of your blob, but in turn you do get a significantly less amount of points per black pixel you hit.

One thing I noticed about the game is that it almost completely gets rid of the HUD. The first two games had very noticeable numbers fixed over top of the action, but in Void, your score just kind of floats around, semi-transparently in the background. Definitely a plus in my eyes.

Now that I think about it, it seems like the developers tried to make Void almost a little less rhythm gamey than the first two. You can definitely tell that Gaijin was heavily influenced by bullet hell shmups. If you think back to Beat and Core, you had to hit each note at the exact right time in order to hit it, and if you missed, you had no chance to get those points back. But in Void you have almost like a movable object on the screen that you can move on a full x/y axis to chase the dots around if you miss one. (I realize that this might sound really confusing if you haven't played the game yet, but I assure you it will make sense when you play it for yourself.)

OH, another thing about the game is that each level has checkpoints now! If you've played the other games in the series, you will remember that that it get's really frustrating if you always die in one spot at the end of the level, and you have to restart after every death. I believe each level now has 4 checkpoints so that really makes it quite a bit easier to get through the levels.

I kept finding myself going back to the WiiWare booth multiple times a day just to play the game. It's seriously so fun and addictive, I totally could have been the first one to beat it, if the Nintendo people didn't make me go to the back of the line every time I died >:( I still feel resent towards those cheeky bastards.
#Community    #Wii   
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About garisonone of us since 5:09 PM on 02.20.2008

Hey, I'm Gary, but you can call me garison. I enjoy playing videogames, collecting videogames, reading about videogames, and writing about videogames.


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In alphabetical order.

Bit.Trip Beat
Bit.Trip Core
Mother 3
PixelJunk Shooter
Pop'n Music series
Professor Layton and the Curious Villiage
Rhythm Heaven
Shadow of the Colossus
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4
Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3: FES
Super Mario Galaxy
Zelda: Wind Waker

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