Gundam series is quite popular among the mech fans but it hasn’t managed to transition well to video games. The release of Gundam Versus feels like a step in the right direction for making a fun Gundam game. This is definitely a treasure trove for those who have managed to stay with the series throughout all these years as it contains references to almost every season of the TV show released so far. I might not be a fan of the show but I still enjoyed my time with the game thanks to its fun combat system and an arcade based approach to battles.
In Gundam Versus, you control giant mobile suits that come equipped with their own perks and weapons. There is a large variety of them available in Gundam Versus. There are over 90 mobile suits for you to control in the game and each of them can also get upgrades and experience points. The major focus of the game is on multiplayer where the option to fight both offline and online is available. The game works best if you are playing online but the offline portion is honestly not that bad.
There are a variety of modes for you to tackle in Gundam Versus. You can try your skills in the Ultimate Battle mode or go through an Arcade based Trial Battle mode. If you want to play using your own mobile suits and stages, there is also the option to go through a Free Battle mode. That’s basically the gist of the offline modes for the game although the Ultimate Battle mode also offers online multiplayer if you need it.
The online portion of the game ranges from ranked, casual and player match. If you want to master the mechanics before taking control of a mech, it is best to go through the tutorial atleast once so you can get a hang of the basic combat. The game can be tricky to figure out if you are new to it but as you play more of it, the combat becomes second hand and it should be easier to pull off a set of combos with your weapons. Mobility is important in combat and so is conserving your ammo during the battle so keeping both of these in mind will result in an easier victory over the opponent.
One of the aspect of the game that might not sit well with others is how there is no proper story in the game. You are just left with mostly arcade based gameplay modes which provide your mobile suit with experience points or GP. You will be able to use the GP to unlock more strikers, mobile suits or pilots. Even though there is no story, you do get some little background on each of the Gundam series included in the game by visiting the media section. If you haven’t seen the show, it is nice to find out a little more information about them in the extras.
Mobile suits will get experience points that lets you unlock more of their potential and since there are plenty of them in the game, you should be busy in upgrading your favorite mobile suits. Although, while this might sound nice at first, it can get repetitive rather quickly. You also have the ability to select your pilot and a striker for each battle. Some of these will be locked until you progress further in the game. Gradually, you should be able to unlock more of the potential of the mobile suits along with the strikers but only if you actually enjoy the battle system since there is no narrative laid out here to make you carry out the missions.
The real beauty of the game is in the online multiplayer where you are free to challenge other human players. It is in this mode where your skills will be truly put to test. While you can select from multiple difficulties in the ultimate battle mode, it is easy to get through most of them, but a competitive player is on just a whole another level. You will be required to use the mobile suit to the best of your ability during these online battles which are thankfully well implemented here.
You will need to be well prepared before starting with the mutliplayer since it can prove to be challenging for newcomers before you get the hang of the game. I should add that despite the strong focus on online multiplayer, this mode didn’t exactly provide a smooth experience to me. I had trouble getting into matches and the experience wasn’t exactly flawless. When it does work properly though, it can prove to be a lot of fun. I hope that Bandai Namco can patch out some of the multiplayer issues so that the experience is better for most of us, but as it stands, it isn’t exactly as great.
Gundam Versus Review (PS4)
Game Reviewed on: PS4
Game description: Gundam Versus is a video game for the PlayStation 4, the fifth generation in the Gundam VS series. It was released in Japan and Asian territories on July 6, 2017 with a North American and European release on September 29, 2017.
Gundam Versus offers a fun combat system and an abundance of mobile suits to fight with in the game. While the Arcade like experience might give it some longevity, it also makes it harder to recommend it for those who aren't really a fan of the series.