When we were first introduced to Akiba’s Trip Undead & Undressed Director’s Cut at PAX East 2023, we only had time to get a visual preview of the game and not a hands-on experience. At the time, the base concept of the game seemed comedic and a bit fun. Honestly, who doesn’t like killing vampires? What’s even better? Stripping vampires and humans of their clothing to see who really is the enemy. With this comical approach to combat in mind, we decided to jump into Akiba’s Trip Undead & Undressed Director’s Cut. Before diving into this review, I will state that yes, I knew the game was a remake of a 2013 game, but was unaware of the changes that they made in the Director’s cut.
Akiba’s Trip Undead & Undressed Director’s Cut
Developer: ACQUIRE Corp.
Publisher: XSEED Games, Marvelous USA, Inc
Platforms: PC (Steam), Switch digital and Physical, and PlayStation 4
Release Date: August 1st, 2023
Price: $29.99 USD Digital, $39.99 Physical
Rather than getting to know the character and experiencing their normal everyday life, we are immediately thrown into the story’s plot. Lured in by a lucrative job offer and otaku bonuses, our character finds himself on an operating table after a procedure.
While the staff checks on his cognition, an intruder breaks in and disrupts the examination. This puts our hero into a life-or-death situation, where must choose a life of servitude or fight against those that double-crossed him.
Now serving a new master, our hero looks to take down the Synthisters (vampires) and stop the evil organization’s plans. But how do you tell the Synthisters from everyday human beings?
Easy, you don’t load an app that shows them sparkle; yes, you heard that right, they sparkle. Alright, all Twilight jokes aside, the core concept to differentiate is pretty solid; once you find a Synthisters, you must rip off their clothes in order to slay them.
Overall, Akiba’s Trip Undead & Undressed Director’s Cut has a pretty decent story with a variety of paths and ending for the player to choose from; the game’s Director Cut DLC adds an additional ending (True Ending) for one of the characters.
Now, although the story may be pretty solid, the game’s censorship and change of the game’s dialog/script post-original launch is an absolute disgrace. At first, we were unaware of these changes until reading through the Steam community board.
If you have played any open-world RPG, then you are used to the trend of having to grind for level in order to get stronger. In Akiba’s Trip Undead & Undressed, it feels like no matter what, you are always under-leveled unless you grind for a very long time.
The combat within the game feels extremely dated with weird camera angles, difficulty with switching targets while fighting, and a block button that does not always work. Blocking can be a helpful technique to fight off bigger hoards, but when you are alone, it seems like your character is getting jumped or you have to time your blocks at exactly the right time.
Within combat, there are a variety of detection issues. On multiple occasions, we were trying to jump out of a mob to try and be able to survive. We were able to jump but instead of a normal jump, we ended up drastically high up in the air and still were taking damage.
In these fights, you can get infinitely juggled with enemies able to hit you on the ground continuously and you are unable to do anything; this was aggravating because the game does not let you hit them on the ground. If it does, it makes it rather hard to do so.
Outside of getting continuously hit, there were three visual issues that seemed bugs or maybe just poor gameplay. The first issue occurred when the character would get detained by the police. Rather than getting a game over or simply getting a fine, the game would just crash; this was problematic due to the fact that the police would intervene if a large group fight broke out. On top of the police issue, the game has multiple issues when it comes to visual bugs within combat.
The camera angles can be horrible, but its worse is when the game just overrides any action that you’ve taken. On numerous occasions, we were running away from a mob to suddenly be rubberbanded back to the said mob; this allowed the enemies to unleash devastating combos on us or strip us of our clothes.
The game also favors the NPCs as the enemies are able to grab you during the middle of an attack animation. The most frustrating encounters of this would be when an enemy is within the air and then suddenly they are grabbing you and ripping off your clothes.
In addition to your clothes being robbed without consistency, the game will give you equipment that you can not use and expect you to equip your character with new inferior clothes; there are ways to equip female clothes but it is more tedious than it is worth.
Although Akiba’s Trip Undead & Undressed Director’s Cut may have an interesting story with a variety of alternate endings, the game has quite a bit of flaws.
Despite featuring a new true ending, the change in dialog and censorship kind of soured us on the overall experience. During our time with the game, we encountered multiple combat bugs and visual issues that made the game unenjoyable.
The game does feature a toybox mode and casual difficulty to make it so more casual players can play through the story; playing on Toybox mode gives players all the equipment that they could need but disables any progress and achievements.
Normal difficulty feels more like a hard challenge than the average experience that most Western experiences; more than likely, the normal is actually a hard or veteran difficulty, but the game does a poor job of explaining the differences between the two.
At the end of the day, the game’s poor gameplay and dragging dialog outweigh the game’s narrative. If you are looking for a vampire tale or want to revisit the game, it would be better to watch a YouTube playthrough than spend your time or money on this game. For the game itself, we give it a 4; if we were to doc points for censorship, we’d drop it to a 3 maybe a 2.
Akiba’s Trip Undead & Undressed Director’s Cut was reviewed on PC (Steam) using a copy provided by XSEED Games. You can find additional information about Niche Gamer’s review/ethics policy here. Akiba’s Trip Undead & Undressed Director’s Cut is available on PC (Steam), Nintendo Switch, and PlayStation 4.