We sat down with Akiba's Beat's Director Kota Takano to ask a few questions about the title, as well as look at some gameplay. The title - which XSEED is working in tandem with Acquire to localize while the game is still in active development for Japan - differs from the company's other titles that take place in the Akihabara District in Japan. Instead of being an open-world action title, Akiba's Beat is a more standard JRPG with Tales of style combat with a few twists.
One of the main things that lets the game stand out from its competition are the overall themes of the game - music is a major theme here, as well as imagination. While players fight enemies their Imagination Gauge will rise; once it fills up past the first of 5 sections in the gauge, players can power up their current character into a stronger state that attacks harder and faster by activating their transformation when a headphone icon flashes while they attack an enemy. Filling the gauge completely up and activating the gauge will transform every character in the party as well as start a song in the background; you can choose different songs for each character to represent, and the stage's background changes depending on which song is played while this mode is active.
The game's story wasn't very clear - the only thing that I managed to get out of it was that Akiba was growing corrupted and that each corrupted portion of the city is represented by a warped version of that part of the city. Each dungeon you encounter is part of these corrupted buildings - with the dungeon's respective theme stemming from the type of building that it inhabits. A few of the dungeon themes I saw during our meeting were Maid Cafe and Idol themed - with Tokano confirming that other dungeons representing aspects of Akiba culture, like home electronics, are present.
Akiba's Beat is definitely looking to be a massive departure from the other Akiba titles that Acquire has developed, and players should look forward to trying the title out when it releases on PlayStation 4 and PSVita this Winter. Although a PC version hasn't yet been confirmed, the demo that the developer played through for us was done on a Windows 10 desktop with an Xbox 360 controller - so keep an eye out for more news on that front as well.
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