GAME NAME: Bit.Trip SAGA
DEVELOPER(S): Gaijin Games
PUBLISHER(S): Rising Star Games
RELEASE DATE(S): 16 March 2012
If your idea of a good game is “PWNing N00Bs” in the latest generic First Person Shooter then Bit.Trip SAGA might not be for you. If you are after aesthetic 8-bit visuals, a ridiculously vibrant soundtrack and gameplay more addictive than a nicotine-laced packet of pretzels then Bit.Trip SAGA is just the game you’ve been looking for.
Bit.Trip SAGA is a compilation of six Bit.Trip titles; Beat, Core, Void, Runner, Fate and Flux, all of which have their own unique take on the overall retro gaming theme in stunning 3D.
Bit.Trip Runner is without a doubt the gateway drug in this collection. In Runner you take control of Commander Video, who is the main protagonist throughout the series. You will be tasked with running through each stage without stopping and will need to jump, slide, kick and block your way around various treacherous obstacles. While doing all this you are also encouraged to collect gold slabs in order to unlock bonus missions and increase your overall score on the leaderboard.
Bit.Trip Core is arguably the package’s most challenging title. Projectiles move across the screen from various directions and you are tasked to aim in one of four directions and tap a button to fire a laser and destroy. At first the game can seem impossible to master but once you have a grasp of the controls and rhythm element to the game it become highly rewarding.
Bit.Trip Beat and Bit.Trip Flux are essentially an intense game of Pong on steroids… big elephant steroids. You slide your stylus up and down to move a paddle along the side of the screen. Your goal is to spring the approaching projectiles back to the other side of the screen. Beat and Flux are very similar and Flux can be taken as a sequel to Beat. The colours used in Beat give you a slight clue as to what each pattern type each is but, in Flux, all your patterns are a uniform white colour, regardless of the beat type. A nice change in Flux is the addition of checkpoints which make the game more manageable and allow you the occasional luxury of blinking.
In Bit.Trip Void you use your circle pad to move a black ball around the screen, grabbing additional black bits helping you grow in size. Doesn’t sound too tough does it? As with all the other games in the SAGA package things gradually (sometimes not so gradually) become more difficult. The more black bits you absorb, the bigger your ball grows. The bigger your ball grows the more difficult it becomes to manoeuvre around your obstacles, which are compiled of various white bits. Void is probably the most simplistic concept in modern gaming but this makes it no less fun or addictive.
Lastly there is Bit.Trip Fate. Fate is an on-rail shooter which uses your stylus to aim and your circle pad to move along the ‘rail’. The game is filled with various power ups which help eliminate enemies in tough-to-reach places. Fate comes as a nice change of pace and adds to the versatility of the package.
Bit.Trip SAGA delivers a diverse series bundled together in one package. It will be a while before there is another bundle released with this much charm, visual excellence and overall challenge.