Android Central Verdict
Bottom line: The Skrillex Music Pack is nothing short of an ideal inclusion for Beat Saber, but some of the electronic artist's high-BPM music isn't a good fit for the game's lower difficulties.
The pack includes a diverse sampling of some of Skrillex's best work
Includes his latest song, Don't Go with Don Toliver and Justin Bieber
It's an ideal aesthetic combination
Lower difficulties don't feel right with some of his high-BPM tracks
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Beat Saber and Skrillex is such a peanut-butter-and-chocolate combination that when the official Beat Saber Twitter account started teasing the Skrillex Music Pack, I was shocked that it didn't already exist. As it turns out, Skrillex music makes perfect sense in Beat Saber.
The Beat Saber Skrillex Music Pack plays exactly as you'd expect it to play; Beat Saber's variety comes from new song playlists, not new mechanics. If you love Beat Saber, you'll probably enjoy this just as much. But no matter how you virtually slice it, it's hard to say that this is the definitive DLC pack for everyone.
Don't get me wrong, I firmly believe that if any internationally famous artist had to have a music pack in Beat Saber, it would be Skrillex, hands down. The problem is that none of the songs in the pack feel like they were meant to be played at every difficulty level the game has to offer. So depending on your skill level, songs may or may not feel like they fit their beatmaps.
Skrillex Music Pack: What you'll like
Beat Saber is the ideal place for the prolific artist's pulsating rhythms and rollercoaster-worthy drops. Any Skrillex fan, let alone anyone who's only been exposed to his music through internet culture and memes (like me), is sure to find a new, exciting way to experience this music. The game's biggest strength is also its biggest weakness; different songs are best for different difficulties.
- Bangarang (feat. Sirah) - Skrillex
- Butterflies - Skrillex, Starrah, & Four Tet
- Don't Go - Skrillex, Justin Bieber, & Don Toliver
- First of the Year (Equinox) - Skrillex
- Ragga Bomb (feat. Ragga Twins) - Skrillex
- Rock 'n' Roll (Will Take You to the Mountain) - Skrillex
- Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites - Skrillex
- The Devil's Den - Skrillex & Wolfgang Gartner
Slower, pulsating songs like Ragga Bomb and Don't Go match much better with the more accomodating pace that comes with normal difficulties, whereas faster songs like Bangarang feel perfect in the frantic pace of the game's higher difficulties.
Those faster-paced songs feel so good, in fact, that I'd argue they're contenders for the biggest challenge — and best workout — that I've had with the game, and I mean that in a good way. Each song provides a varied playstyle, so even though certain songs work specifically well at certain difficulties, they'll all feature different things. Some might have you hitting a number of notes in quick succession, while others might have you bobbing and weaving while reaching to hit a stray note.
Skrillex Music Pack: What you won't like
The included Skrillex songs feel pretty different to a lot of the songs included in the base game. Although they're largely very similar in genre and sound, the Beat Saber songs were composed from the ground-up to correspond to beatmaps at a variety of difficulty levels. But regardless of how fitting these new songs should be for Beat Saber, the execution wasn't the best.
Because Skrillex's music often features such a high BPM, playing a lot of these songs on the normal difficulty just doesn't feel right, leaving less-skilled Beat Saber players in the dust. That's not to say it's bad, but it sometimes feels like the designers chose arbitrary moments to encourage players to move to the beat. Faster-paced songs like Bangarang especially stick out as songs that just don't feel right at some of the more accessible difficulties.
That's the pack's Achilles' heel; a majority of the songs just aren't fit for more leisurely difficulties - that means that if you're a more casual player, or just a lapsed player, you won't be able to get the most from this music pack. That's not inherently a problem, but when a song has so many beats per minute, playing on a difficulty that throws fewer notes at you undermines Skrillex's songs.
Skrillex Music Pack: Should you play it?
3.5 out of 5
Beat Saber and Skrillex Music Pack sounds like a match made in heaven. And every song in the pack feels great, or at least sometimes - no song fits every difficulty. Where an up-tempo song feels wrong at the lower difficulties, some of the lower-energy tracks feel like overkill on higher difficulties.
But, it goes both ways - playing the more intense songs in the pack at high difficulties is some of the most fun I've had with the game, and the lower-energy songs are great to warm up with or for beginners to get a hang of the game. If you're a Skrillex fan, or just need some more songs to play in one of the definitive rhythm games, this pack's a no-brainer. You cann download the pack right now on Steam, the Oculus Store, and the Playstation Network for $11.
Charlie's a freelance contributor at Android Central from Milwaukee, WI.