Beat the Blitz with Gatorade. Credit: The Mill

Beat the Blitz is a free title available for the HTC Vive and backed by Gatorade designed to try and teach some practical sports knowledge. The target-practice based approach is quite fun, albeit not as physically demanding as other games. A life-sized Peyton Manning will coach you through the mechanics, followed by a brief ad for Gatorade.

I managed about 30 minutes before the experience became a bit repetitive for me, but the target practice drills do offer a good opportunity for competitive scoring. My partner and I each grabbed a few rounds in our time together and comparing scores helped motivate play.

Is Beat the Blitz the next killer fitness app? Hardly, but the title offers active gaming for the fitness gamer seeking a new challenge.

Beat the Blitz with Hydration

When hydration or time hit zero, it’s game over. Credit: The Mill

Gatorade is a sports drink designed to keep players hydrated, and this game offers an in-depth look at the body and brain during dehydration. The first round tests your understanding of the mechanics by having you hit targets while Manning teaches you how to throw the perfect spiral. You can throw for hundreds of yards with a good toss in this game, so put some oomph behind your throw.

Next, digital players will come and try to tackle you. You will need to step left or right to dodge them. Meanwhile, your hydration meter decreases until it reaches zero (game over). During your first session, Peyton will walk you through a neatly detailed model of the human body to show you how dehydration affects your performance.

Gatorade has done a good job rendering the body and making the education experience cool and brief. It’s corny, sure, but the message is good and the game is fairly fun.

After the two-minute lesson/commercial, you get the opportunity to get back in the game. Every miss lowers your hydration meter, and game time lasts for three minutes. During that time period, the lineman will attempt to tackle you. Sometimes, they will come from multiple angles. Targets also move quite fast the higher your score. Make sure you’re throwing for accuracy and that you have a good eye for which targets you can hit.

Impressions

Beat the Blitz is a fun free to play game with an ad hook that doesn’t try too hard to be cool. The app functions a lot like a shooting gallery, but the motion of your arm and shoulders will give you a bit of a workout.

This title has no global leaderboards, but there are achievements built into the game that gives you score targets to shoot for. My partner and I were aiming for the “Unstoppable” achievement for hitting thirty targets in a row. I was able to get up to 12 before I finally missed one. It’s tough to both dodge and throw accurately, especially as your visibility reduces in clarity.

In real sports, you probably won’t see your vision fade to black. However, I’ve been in VR long enough to understand how real dehydration feels and how it affects performance. You know you’re dehydrated because your moves become sluggish, and it’s harder to breathe efficiently. You can feel the effects all over your body.

I think those with a partner will enjoy Beat the Blitz for at least an hour or two. For a free game, the premise is fun and the presentation is solid. It looks like a premium title you might spend under $5 for. The ad isn’t an issue after your first session, but it interrupts play noticeably while you’re learning the ropes.


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