There’s nothing quite like owning physical goods, but they can be expensive and shelf space can come at a premium. Every month, Hardcore Gamer picks a premium collectible from our cavernous swag vaults and tells you whether it’s worth a spot in your Collector’s Cabinet.
Superbeat: Xonic is the most recent rhythm title to grace the PlayStation Vita, which has seen a surprising number of them. Regardless of your opinion on the game itself, there’s no doubt that it received one heck of a limited edition. Actually, for North American gamers, there were two editions available beyond the standard physical or digital release. First was Superbeat: Xonic The X-Clusive Limited Edition at the cost of $50. This included a physical copy of the game and two-disc original soundtrack. Next was the Superbeat: Xonic The X-Otic Limited Edition at a premium price of $100. This one came with the game and CD soundtrack, of course, alongside two records. Both editions were limited to 500 pieces each in the region and have since sold out.
As the obsessive collector that I am, it should be obvious that Superbeat: Xotic’s X-Otic Limited Edition was too strong a siren call to ignore. So, let’s take a look at all the included goodies, starting with the case used to house everything. The Limited Edition is enclosed by a handsome and hefty black box. The square shape makes sense when you recall that there are two full size albums within. Although the contents within do take up a fair amount of the box, they’re given enough room to “breathe” so to speak via two foam layers. The first piece of black foam is carefully cut to allow the Vita game case and CD soundtrack to fit snugly inside. Black ribbons attack to each side of the foam so that you can pull it up easily and reveal the records underneath.
It opens up like a book, with a magnetic clasp keeping the case closed when you’re not busy admiring it. One of the weirdest design choices was adding a clear plastic cover labeled “Superbeat: Xonic” over the first layer. I’m not sure as to the utility of this plastic, other than to make the box slightly more awkward to sift through. Finally, there’s the cover which features the game name in a lovely silver coloration. Well, it was lovely until word of the European limited edition came out. That version actually features a die cut cover with a reflective surface underneath. It’s honestly a bit annoying that release was given an extra touch of effort, especially when it’s offered in nearly the same quantities as North America received (450 versus 500).
But enough fussing. Let’s discuss the actual items found within the X-Otic Limited Edition! There’s not much to say about the copy of Superbeat: Xonic. It’s your basic Vita title and comes sealed. Then there’s the CD soundtrack which includes two discs and over 50 tracks from the game. It’s worth noting that the CDs themselves were sold separately as well but these packages have also sold out. They’re packed inside an attractively colorful DVD-sized case, which is refreshing when compared with the cardboard and jewel cases of many other so-called limited editions. What’s most important about the X-Otic edition is not its CDs though, but vinyl.
At first glimpse, it’s gorgeous. It’s quite exciting to lift off the top layer of the box to find the woman from the boxart of Superbeat: Xonic staring back at you from the album cover. The whole thing is encased in a clear plastic sheet in case you never wish to open it up, but how could you not? In any case, the album uses a gatefold design with one record housed within each side. There’s a downside to the lovely printwork enticing folks to open their album up and get a good look. Upon first spreading it open, you’ll likely be treated to a cracking cardboard sound. What’s that? Oh, it’s just the spine getting creased all the way down. Drat! The vinyl itself is nice and plain black rather than getting the goofy color treatment of many other specialty albums.
Something that might initially surprise folks is that the two albums also manage to capture the entire 50+ soundtrack of Superbeat: Xonic. This was accomplished by having music on both sides of each disc, as well as the simple fact that the songs in this game are typically one to two minutes long. With such short songs it’s much easier to cram more onto a single record. No matter your opinion on this game’s soundtrack value, the listenable quality is high, although maybe not worth the $50 over the X-Clusive Limited Edition for non-vinyl collectors. Finally, although it wasn’t advertised at any point, my copy also came with an aluminum pin featuring the game’s cover art. It’s a neat little bonus, even if I’m not sure what to do with it since it doesn’t fit inside the box.
The saddest thing about this limited edition is that folks who discover and fall in love with Superbeat: Xonic will have a hard time getting a hold of any of its components if they reside within North America without resorting to inflated fees on eBay. It appears some of the European editions are still available, though, so perhaps it would be worth the extra fee to nab one of those 450 units from Rising Star Games before they’re all gone.