Bit.Trip Fate is somewhat different in terms of incorporating music than other titles in the series, but is still a fun game to play. This game is a literal rail shooter as players control Commander Video and shoot enemies. There are some musical elements when firing at enemies, but this is not a rhythm game. Also, enemies fire in patterns reminescent to bullet hell games, making this game a mix of these three genres of games.
Graphically, this is similar fare to other Bit.Trip games, but has a design similar to Runner with mostly 3d objects. The backgrounds are somewhat trippy, yet have enough detail to stand out as three unique locations that are traversed in the game. The story continues from Runner as well, with Commander Video and his buddies teaming up to destroy Mingrawn Timbletot. Overall, the story is darker as well with the Commander wanting to fight the enemies with anger as shown in some of the cutscenes. Dubstep style music adds to this dark feeling while playing the game, and the music does sound great as well while not being as dynamic in other games. Music cues are made when destroying an enemy, but they are not in sync with the background music as in other games.
Essentially, the gameplay is a literal rail shooter with bullet hell and musical elements. Players control the Commander in a set line path, only being able to move left and right along this path. Like in other Bit.Trip games, the player can increase or lose rank, and this powers up or down Commander Video. The game is lost if Commander Video is in Nether mode and gets hit. Powerups are in the stages, each with varying effects. Enemies shoot bullets and occasionally lasers, some of which have their own kind of pattern to dodge. The meat of the difficulty lies with the bosses at the end of each level. Usually, these guys start out with hard patterns at first, then tend to get easier with the next parts of the boss. Most of my deaths were up in the boss areas, although the levels tend to be easy when repeating them.
This game can easy or hard depending on those who played bullet hell games before. Many enemies will fire a lot of bullets, so it will take some replaying to follow the pattern and dodge the bullets. For me, the first half of the game was pretty easy, but the second half give me a bit of a challenge. It is definitely shorter than Runner with a total of 6 levels that are each around 10 minutes.
Bit.Trip Fate doesn't have strong rhythm elements in the game. However, it is good in making a different kind of shoot em up game that plays great and has some of the style of the series with its art and music. In essence, this game follows some of the same art and music style, but breaks away from being mainly a rhythm game to deliver a shooter game that delivers its unique and engaging gameplay well.