This series is something that needs to have a western release. The SD Gundam G Generation series of SRPG games have been around for a fair number of years, first released on the Playstation, and has since then been released on many systems, both home consoles, and portables. with its most recent iteration releasing on the PS4, and PSVita on 22 November, 2016. The combination of Mobile Suit: Gundam, and SRPG seems as a match made in heaven, and you would be correct, with caveats. The inclusion of an English translated version that released at the same time as its Japanese counterpart is a welcome addition, to fans that enjoy the series, but are not fluent in Nihongo. Another great addition is the inclusion of receiving the season pass if you buy it early. The gameplay has also been improved a lot over the years, comparatively to what it was early on, and this newest one is no exception. The graphics, music, and fan service to Gundam fans young and old is really well done, with that said however, this game still has some hold-overs from earlier iterations and seems to give a somewhat shorthand version of events in most of different stories that are a part of the U.C. (Universal Century) timeline of the Gundam series.
While the major U.C. series that are a part of this game are more or less intact, (though there are still some arcs that are missing that could have added a little extra to the game) it is the OVA levels that have seemingly been cut down to almost skeletal levels, (some, like IGLOO get more attention than others, e.g. 08th MS Team only has two, excruciatingly long levels, that while telling a decent amount of the story, leaves out enough, where if you have no frame of reference, you can easily lose track). While there is a glossary of sorts, that tells a slightly more in depth synopsis of all the U.C. series, it feels as though they could have put a bit more into a few of the different series,(especially since there is a fair number of series whose only presence in game is that of a few of the more well known mobile suits).
Even if the list of U.C. series is not complete, there is quite the list of series involved in this title, specifically starting at Mobile Suit Gundam, and ending as of this article, at Hathaway's Flash, which is a few years after the end of Unicorn. The dearth of levels is okay to a point, due to the amount of series that are included in this game, and the ones added after release, but if each series in this game got at least one or two more levels each it seems as though it would be even better, with that said, the amount of content is still worth the purchase. Another issue with the game, is how each playable section is separated into their own separate menu, and this in and of itself is not a terrible utilization of U.I., it just feels as though there is some small change that could be made to make it more easily navigated that it is currently. While the menus are by far not the worst by any stretch of the imagination, the level of cascading menus could be reduced slightly.
As stated earlier, the game excels at U.C. Gundam fan service, and where this is most obvious is the selection of pilots, and suits to choose that you can train, and fight with. The best aspect of this is that once you unlock a suit, pilot, or warship to be used, they can be used in any series that came out before, or after it, which can lead to some ridiculous levels of over powered massacres, (to be fair, though, if you go in unprepared, you will be the one on the receiving end of the decimation). One weird aspect of this game, is the inclusion of characters created specifically for the SD Gundam G Generation series of games. Other that being characters, and mobile suits that you can use to help you as an extra crew, at least in this most recent game, they have no contribution to the overall stories of the different Gundam series. Since I have not really played any of the earlier games, I do not know if it was something taken out recently, or for this game specifically. While they have their own glossary entries, there is really no sense of character importance. Honestly though, that can also be said for all the characters, it is really the playing of the separate stories, while getting to fight with your favorite pilots, and mobile suits. While that is enjoyable enough as a game on its own, it is slightly disappointing that the multitude of characters in this game do not have anymore charisma, than the one liners they spout when you watch their combat animations, (though those lose their power after watching them 300 times, and you end up skipping them 99% of the time).
In conclusion, while this game is not perfect, and caters more to the existing fans, rather than making it more approachable, (which also has its issues, its all about balance of both the ideals), and some of the U.I. issues are things that should have been phased out five years ago, there is something special here that even if you are not a fan of Gundam, can find something to enjoy about it. The real issue of getting into a game like this is, if you live in the west, and don't have the funds to spend more than the cost of video games in your home country, it might be a bit of an issue. However, if those are not hindrances to you, then I say you should give this series a fair shake to see if it is something you would enjoy. So please, Bandai, give this game, (and many other Gundam games) a western release!
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