Review by Banjo_2553

"A carpal-tunnel inducing game chock full of fun."

Elite Beat Agents is a wacky-looking game that teaches that the power of music can overcome anything. Don't be fooled though, as this game is VERY challenging.

The whole game pretty much uses the touch screen and stylus, except for rare occasions. The object of the game is to have the Elite Beat Agents help troubled people by dancing away to real songs. Famous songs such as "You're My Inspiration" and "Sk8tr Boi" are in this game, but all songs are not performed by the original artists. The reinterpretations are very close to the originals, so you shouldn't have any trouble listening to them.

There are three actions to do with the stylus during a mission. In the touch screen, there are basic colored numbers, and there's a circle that gradually closes in on the number. You must touch the number right when the outer circle meets the number. The numbers and colors basically indicate the order you should tap them.

Some of the numbers create a ball when tapped, and the ball moves along a "track." You must have the stylus on the ball at all times to succeed through this. Sometimes there's an arrow at the end of the track, which means when you hit it, the ball backtracks through the track. Keep the stylus on the ball no matter what.

Finally, there's a spinner that takes up the whole screen. Simply spin the stylus until the lights in the background fill up to the top to succeed. If you continue spinning after the lights are filled, you'll gain bonus points. You can spin either clockwise or counter-clockwise, it's basically your preference.

All actions need to be performed to keep the Elite-O-Meter up. If it's on the positive side all the time, you're almost sure to win and get the good ending of the mission. However, if it's in the red, you're likely to get the bad ending if you don't do something. If the Elite-O-Meter reaches zero, the mission ends automatically as a failure.

Now for the challenge. The actions can go by really quickly, and even at normal mode, you have to be very alert. I can't go through normal mode's final mission, as I have to hit around 15 targets in the span of 3 seconds. Sounds tough? You bet, but it's the challenge that really makes the game so fun.

The score. How you do the actions depends on how much points you get. When you perfectly touch a number, you get 300 points, but if you're timing is off by a tad, you might only get 100 or 50 points. The score is tallied up at the end of the mission, and depending on how well you did, you will be ranked. Highest is an S Rank, which pretty much requires everything to be perfect. Also, the total score for each mission in each difficulty is added up to the game's total score. Gaining points will rank you up, and getting certain ranks can unlock bonus missions for all difficulties.

As for the mission content, all of them have stories about a certain person and his or her troubles. Some are very touching, like a little girl's father getting killed in an accident and her wishing for him to come back by Christmas Day, (sniff) or wacky and hilarious things like a baseball player trying to defeat a humongous lava Golem in order to save his football career. There's one certain mission that has super-sexy celebrities with their boobs jiggling, so it might not be appropriate for kids under the age of 10. (It is rated E10+, after all.)

The only bad thing about the game, is because of the intense pace that the game can get to, it's advisable not to play it for even 2 hours straight, because it CAN cause carpal tunnel syndrome. This is the only reason why I took this otherwise perfect game's score down to a 9.

Overall, this is a very fun game that should be gotten for anyone who loves rhythm games like DDR. Very addicting, fast-paced, hilarious (and sad) at times, but cannot be played for extensive periods. I'd recommend this.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 03/07/07

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