Akiba's Trip: Undead and Undressed Director's Cut - Switch Review

Akiba's Trip: Undead and Undressed Director's Cut by developer Acquire and publishers Marvelous, XSEED GamesNintendo Switch review written by Richard with a copy provided by the publisher.
Estimated reading time: 6 minutes
Well now, here I sit again in front of my TV, screaming "GODAMNIT, GIVE ME YOUR PANTS" and "HELL YEAH, ALL THE PANTIES" making my neighbours question what the heck I'm doing. Spoiler, it's playing Akiba's Trip: Undead and Undressed Director's Cut. 

Akiba's Trip Undead and Undressed is an action strip-'em-up released in North America back in 2014. Now coming to a more up to date system with all the DLCs and some bonus content included in the form of the Director's Cut on Switch! Both handheld and console type playability allowed!

Akiba's Trip is the tale of a young man living in Akihabara, the electronics mecca of Japan. After deciding to take part in an extremely sketchy drug trial in exchange for limited edition anime figurines, the main character is kidnapped and turned into a sort of vampire thrall called a Synthester. Lucky for our MC, he gets saved by a girl who turns him into a familiar instead of a common thrall. So, what are you going to do now? Why, defeat the evil "not-a-vampires" that are plaguing Akihabara! And how are you going to do this? By stripping them and exposing them to that dastardly sunlight of course!

Alright, now I know what you're thinking: "what the heck is this game", and that's perfectly reasonable. But seriously, it's actually ridiculously fun. Pretty much what drives the game is you walking around Akihabara getting into fights with people where you need to beat them up enough for you to be able to remove your enemies clothes. Combat is a 3D action brawler type deal, where both you and your opponents can have three defensive equipment slots: Headgear, upper body, and lower body. Each piece has its own defensive value, and by reducing it to a certain point, you, or your enemies, can strip the clothes off. When someone is out of clothes, they are defeated and may drop their weapon or other accessories for you to equip.

Guess what? Any clothes you strip intact you get to keep! While you might be tearing a lot of clothes to begin with, the more you strip the better you get at stripping without tearing clothes. You can collect these to equip or sell as you need to. You can also unlock an upgrade function where you can get your little sister to enhance your gear by using other gear. Something to note is that every piece of equipment, whether it provides a defensive rating or not, updates your character appearance. You can also equip different methods of stripping people as well as walking styles.

Other than fighting off civilians and manmade vampires? Well, you'll be walking around Akihabara visiting shops to buy pants, or items, or weapons to beat people with, or you could be taking on sidequests in order to earn some money or perhaps clothing. You can also take a trip to the battle arena to test your mettle. Overall, the game is rather simplistic in its approach, which means it's a lot easier to get into the fun.

So, let's talk a bit about some more of the nitty gritty of the beat-'em-up style. As mentioned, there are three defensive clothings, and you can push a different button to attack each piece. The more hits you get within a time frame, you start building a combo which increases your damage rating. You also have a guard which will let you dodge attacks, and you can unleash counter attacks if you attack right after dodging. Now, if you happen to weaken multiple articles of clothing, you can chain strip. Essentially, whenever you strip an article of clothing, you can hit a button prompt to move onto the next clothing item as long as the durability is low enough. Not only do you get bonus exp for this, but if you get a high enough chain, you can even strip the opponent of their underwear! Muahahahaha! You do need to be careful however, as enemies tend to gang up on you, and you can be combo'd in a corner if you aren't careful.

As you are walking around Akihabara there is a lot to take in, from the various characters in weird or interesting outfits, the cosplayers, the stores and locations based on actual real world places, and even flyers that are actually from stores in real life! Well, as of 2013, but it's still cool to see it based so closely off a real place and real shops. There are colourful locales and LOTS of clothing items to...liberate the residents of. 

Good news though, you get a camera function that allows you to scan what people are carrying, letting you know if you've mastered the skill to assure getting their clothing, whether you have that clothing, or whether you have had it at some point so it got registered in the encyclopedia. Taking a picture in scan mode will also let you know if a dude is a Synthester or not. You can then talk to them to start a fight. Alternatively, you can shove people and hope they fight you instead of running away.

The graphic quality is... well, it originally also released on the Vita, so it's nothing too fancy, but you also have a ridiculous amount of control over a lot of game aspects under the Visual Editor. The soundtrack is also pretty good, although I wouldn't say it would win any rewards. Really, what you're here for is campy beat'em up fun, and Akiba's Trip offers that in droves. The game doesn't usually take itself seriously, and neither should you. 

There are a few issues, such as getting boxed in by random NPCs while walking, getting absolutely bodied by large groups of enemies, and if you aren't upgrading equipment, chances are some of the later fights are going to be down right nasty. There are certain mitigations to all this, such as the fact you push NPCs out of the way, a more conservative fighting style, and repeatable side-quests to build money for buying equipment and fusing, or the option to start a new game plus just by leaving Akihabara, but sometimes it can still feel a little rough. 

Now, I'd like to give an extra special mention to Akiba's Trip's New Game Plus feature. Yeah, I know, lots of games have these, what's so special about Akiba's Trip? Well, in addition to bringing over all your items and Encyclopedia entries, you can also freely select your character model, even from the random NPCs. A cool feature to be sure, but the most important? The ability to see what dialogue options are associated with what a character's true ending is. Seriously, this is a feature that more games need to include.

Overall, I have to say that Akiba's Trip Undead and Undressed Director's Cut is a really great title. Now available on more modern platforms, with additional story content and the DLC from the base game included, Akiba's Trip Undead and Undressed will strip the boredom right out of you.

Score: 9 / 10


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