Overall score 95

I love rhythm games, and I’m loving my Nintendo Switch. So whenever a new rhythm game makes its way to the Switch, I’m excited to check it out. Just like other rhythm titles on Switch, SUPERBEAT XONiC isn’t exactly entirely new, and I’ve already reviewed the game on Vita and PS4. Still, there’s good reason for Switch owners to look forward to this release. It’s my third time reviewing this game, but I can tell you that after all this playtime, the experience still holds up and is worth your time.

THE GOOD: Won’t go too into detail of the gameplay, since a quick look at a trailer will let you know what it is. Plus, this is my third review of the game, and it’s still the same concept. Main difference with the Switch version though is that it’s a blend of the original Vita version with the changes made with the PS4/Xbox One ports. Meaning that the Switch version is capable of full controller support, while also being playable with touch controls. That was something I felt was really missing in the original Vita version. Since that version only had button controls during gameplay, but you had to use touch for most of the menu navigation. So it’s nice that when the game made the jump to Switch, that it makes full use of the console’s features.

Playing with touch controls is good fun too. For the Vita version, playing with touch worked nicely thanks to the form factor of the system. With the Switch being a bit larger, I was curious to see how well touch controls would be. For the most part, it works, but it could be a bit straining for your thumbs to be covering that much area. So I opted to try playing the game like a tablet, by laying it down and playing with my fingertips. Doing it this way felt more comfortable. Of course, with the flicking and sliding notes, you would need something to help keep the Switch in place. Then there was the 6 TRAX FX difficulty which has a couple notes permanently tied to the shoulder buttons, meaning even when playing with touch, you will need to use buttons for those specific notes. At first, I thought I would be unable to play this difficulty since the buttons aren’t readily nearby when you’re mainly playing with your fingers, or at least in a way that wouldn’t seem too awkward. Then I remembered that the Joy-Cons can detach from the system. So I then gripped a Joy-Con in each hand with my thumbs over the shoulder buttons and my pointer fingers out, then played it that way. Surprisingly, it actually worked out fairly well. Other than still being bad at the flicking notes, I was able to push the shoulder notes with my thumbs, while playing touch with my fingers. So that’s a unique thing the Switch version brings to the table, thanks to the combination of touch and button controls.

Also, with the Switch version, the first batch of DLC songs will be available as free downloads when the game launches. Seven songs in total. One of the songs is still a free download on other platforms, but the other six were only available as paid DLC. So along with the Switch version being the same price as PS4 and Xbox One, which is $39.99, you can add on some free DLC tracks with it. It’s a nice incentive for Switch owners, especially for those who may consider double dipping.

THE BAD: Before you do decide to double dip on this game, you should know that the controls may take some getting use to. I’ve played the game for many hours on Vita and PS4. As you can see with how the notes are laid out, it was developed with the Playstation controller layout in mind. That being the fact that the Dpad and buttons are on the same level with each other, along with the sticks. I never checked out the Xbox One version, so I never thought much about this issue. With the Switch controller layout being similar to Xbox, I now have a better understanding. The change in layout certainly had an affect on my playing. I was able to get over it quickly, but I still found myself missing notes due to my mind thinking the sticks on my left hand were at the bottom and not on the top. Perhaps not something a first-time player will have much trouble with, but for those who were use to the Playstation controls, you may want to keep that in mind. It’s not a game-breaking issue or anything, but it will be something you have to think about when jumping from one platform to the other.

OVERALL THOUGHTS: SUPERBEAT XONiC still continues to be a fun rhythm game, and now Switch owners will be able to join in. It has a nice range of music and offers up different layers of difficulty to help ease new players in. The Switch version is a best of all worlds version too, thanks to the combination of button and touch controls, along with the improved sound and visuals made when the game got ported up to HD consoles. Then there’s the free DLC songs and the fact that it’s priced the same as all the other versions. All that together, plus the fact that this can be enjoyed on the go or at home, and you got a good argument for this being the best version of the game. So if you’re into rhythm games, SUPERBEAT XONiC is a great addition to your Switch library.

Editor’s Note: Review is based on the digital version of game, which was provided by the publisher.

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