NINTENDO DS PREVIEW: ELITE BEAT AGENTS

The coolest, hippest most secret organization comes to the DS. by Cole Smith

May 16, 2006 - iNiS's hit rhythm game Ouendan will be coming to the US as Elite Beat Agents. You may have paid a small fortune for the Japanese import and although I can't say that it will be as much fun, it will definitely be different.

The North American version of Elite Beat Agents will feature all new songs and storylines. It's essentially an Ouendan sequel for those who have already played the original. Hopefully none of the quirky charm will be missing from this version as the developers attempt to Americanize this version.

Elite Beat Agents takes the rhythm game concept to new levels as the game lets you unlock stories and situations that require resolving by keeping time to the music by tapping the touchscreen control. Whether you're helping a lost dog find its way home or helping a babysitter charm a hunky football player, no crisis is too weird.

Every scene is accompanied by rump-shaking tunes, but players have to keep the Elite Beat Agents grooving. The worse players do, the worse the story might end up.

The public knows of government agencies like the FBI and CIA, but little is known of this super-secret agency. Code-named "Elite Beat Agents," these men in black are heroes' heroes and the coolest group of guys this world has ever known. Of course, according to official records, they do not exist. Their leader, an ex-CIA agent named Commander Kahn, scans the world for cries of help. When he finds one, he dispatches the agents, who assist their targets by performing a song and dance. The hypnotic nature of their rocking revives the targets with "Groovy" energy that boosts their willpower and helps them overcome their obstacles. As the music plays, players tap the screen, trace rhythmic patterns and keep the beat as the story unfolds on the top screen.



Every stage is presented in a storyline fashion. All stages share similar basic elements and game flow: The player gets introduced to the target's problem in a comical intro. Commander Kahn dispatches the agents to the scene. The agents arrive in a special "Beat Transport" that is tailor-made for the situation. The song starts as the agents and player meet the target. Game play begins. By tapping and tracing patterns that appear on screen with the stylus, players play along with the song's rhythm. The animated story changes depending on how well the player performs. After each section, the player gets judged. Depending on the Elite-o-meter's judgment, the story will go well or poorly. If the player makes it though the whole song, he or she will be judged on the whole thing and get one of three endings.

Characters include: Commander Kahn; Derek, Morris and J (the Elite Beat Agents); and a ton of other unusual characters. The names have not been officially finalized.

Features:

  • As the music plays, players tap the screen, trace rhythmic patterns and keep the beat as the story unfolds on the top screen.
    Every scene is accompanied by rump-shaking tunes, but players have to keep the Elite Beat Agents grooving. The worse players do, the worse the story might end up.
  • Rhythm games have come and gone, but no one has ever seen anything like the Elite Beat Agents. Whether they’re helping a lost dog find its way home or helping a babysitter charm a hunky football player, no crisis is too weird.

By Cole Smith
CCC Senior Writer

Rating out of 5
Elite Beat Agents (DS)
NA
Graphics
Not Available
NA
Control
Not Available
NA
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Not Available
NA
Play Value
Not Available
NA
Overall Rating -
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.
System: DS
Dev: iNiS
Pub: Nintendo
Released: TBA 2006
Players: 1 - 4
Preview by Cole

Review Rating Legend
1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor
2.5 - 2.9 = Average
3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
3.5 - 3.9 = Good
4.0 - 4.4 = Great
4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
5.0 = The Best