Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Update

We clock in some more time cracking heads in Namco Bandai and Koei's robotic brawler.

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Namco Bandai and Koei's upcoming Dynasty Warriors: Gundam is one of those concepts that might sound crazy on paper but manages to work in real life. The game takes a fairly cut-and-dried mash-up approach to marrying the Gundam franchise with Koei's winning beat-'em-up formula that's been honed over the course of the Dynasty Warrior games. We got our hands on work-in-progress versions of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 iterations of the game to see how they're shaping up.

Dynasty Warriors + giant robots = Dynasty Warriors: Gundam.

Both console games will feature identical content, though the Xbox 360 will have the addition of achievements. You'll find three modes, official, original, and versus, that let you play as familiar faces from the Gundam universe. The official mode lets you take part in adventures from Gundam lore, while the original mode offers the chance to play against faces from the various Gundam story arcs. Finally, the versus mode lets you compete against a friend. Given the Gundam franchise's long history, the modes offer a wealth of characters and mobile suits. The official mode offers a total of six pilots to play through, while the original mode features more than 12 pilots. As far as the powerful mobile suits go, you'll find more than 15 to choose from. The catch, of course, is that you'll have to unlock a good chunk of the pilots and mobile suits as you play through the various modes.

Both of the modes in Dynasty Warriors: Gundam offer a series of missions that send you fighting through hordes of enemies and facing off against more powerful ace pilots. Your choice of pilot in the modes will determine the mobile suit you use in a particular stage. The game offers a modest level of character and mobile-suit leveling that fits nicely with the simple action. Pilots will gain personal skills, which are unique abilities they can use in battle to boost their offense or defense. In addition, you'll come across parts as you destroy enemies. The parts can be used to buff up one of four attributes on your suit--fight, shoot, defense, and armor--when equipped. Fight affects your melee attacks, shoot affects your ranged attacks, defense reduces the damage you take from attacks, and armor increases the number of hit points your suit has. You can further enhance your mobile suit by pairing up specific parts with in-game mechanics that add an additional bonus to the buff you gain from them.

The versus mode will feature three game types to challenge a friend in: normal, warrior's match, and shotdown contest. Normal will offer you a straightforward one-on-one competition between you and a challenger, with no customization options. The roster of selectable characters is tied to the pilots you've unlocked in original and official modes. Warrior's match is a one-on-one fight broken up into two phases. The first part pits you against artificial intelligence-controlled mobile suits that yield power-ups and upgrades when defeated. The second phase throws you against your opponent with all your upgrades. Finally, shotdown contest puts you and your opponent on a battlefield, separated by an energy field. Rather than beat on your opponent, your goal is to keep the amount of mobile suits in your area below 50. As you defeat the never-ending rush of mechanical foes, you'll gain power-ups, which ups the number of suits on your opponent's field. Whoever winds up with 50 mobile suits on the field first loses.

Besides gameplay modes, Dynasty Warriors: Gundam features a gallery with assorted info and artwork on the title. The character gallery lets you see biographies and artwork for the pilots in the game. The mobile-suit gallery lets you have a look at the 3D models used for the mobile suits and battleships in the game. A voice gallery lets you listen to voice acting clips you've unlocked. The player record shows your vital stats as you play through the game's various modes. Finally, the BGM select option lets you change the background music heard while you browse the menu.

What to do when hordes of futuristic enemies swarm? Hit the attack button multiple times.

The controls in the game map intuitively to the PS3 and 360 controllers. You'll move and adjust your view with the analog sticks. Dashing, melee combat, shooting, special attacks, strafing, guarding, and jumping are each assigned their own buttons. If the default layout doesn't work out for you, the game lets you customize the layout to your liking. Though the game doesn't use the Sixaxis' motion sensing, it does include rumble on the 360.

Although we've seen the game on the PlayStation 3 for a while now (it was released late last year in Japan), this was the first time we'd been able to spend with the Xbox 360 game. Though there are still quite a few rough edges to the 360 conversion (mainly in the frame rate and performance department), it has a consistent look across both consoles, which was admittedly not the most stunning game ever seen on the PS3. The various mobile suits sport a clean look. The environments follow the same aesthetic and offer a solid amount of detail across the land- and air-based locales. The special effects used for the various mobile-suit super attacks offer some kick to the visuals, but ultimately Dynasty Warriors: Gundam's appeal is firmly rooted in its gameplay. We reckon the 360's rough spots will be smoothed over as development continues; there's not much reason for the game not to run well on both systems.

From the look of things so far, Dynasty Warriors: Gundam should please fans of both Dynasty Warriors and Gundam. The reliable gameplay may not break new ground, but it's definitely fun and doesn't blaspheme the Gundam name. Dynasty Warriors: Gundam is slated to ship this August for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

Discussion

33 comments
Xeiphyer
Xeiphyer

Love dynasty warriors and gundam so this should be interesting.. im a bit concerned about the AI though.. It seems like all theyre going to do is stand there like in gundam games =/ I was looking forward to battles a little more gundam styled. I'll rent it to see how it is, but they still havent tapped into the gundam series' awesome potential.

GCN49
GCN49

Definately looks interesting. I have played the PS3 demo and found to be good bit of fun. I know at face value this looks like just another Dynasty Warriors game, but in actuality this could, and should bs considered a Gundam game. In the recent history of Gundam games, this may be the best one to bear that name. Even if this game follows the same general pattern as every other Dynasty Warriors game, those games aren't really that bad. So with the basis of a solid, well trodden, proven game series this may prove to be the best Gundam game in recent years.

anamani
anamani

the demo for this game is fun! it actually makes dynasty warriors interesting again.. not sure how long that feeling will last.. buuuut im excited!

cameron_love
cameron_love

Isnt it about time they brought out a Multiplayer Dynasty Warriors instead of using the exact same thing with different graphics over and over and over again? Imagine it........ 6v6 team battle, players are generals and each general has 50 A.I. soldiers to order about. They can be issued simple commands such as attack and area or enemy, defend and area or ally, etc. Once you start bringing into it different soldier types such as archers, pikemen (good for removing horseriders) and swordsmen, and then add into it the varying "skills" that each player can purchase for their general, then throw in a few "Defend the Castle"/"Protect the Emporer"/"Capture the high ground for 5 mins" and suddenly you have a tactical multiplayer hack n slash game that would be fairly unique on the market. I bought Dynasty Warriors on PS2 about 6 years ago and the latest one, apart from the graphics and a few add on features hasnt changed at all. A Multiplayer sort as described above would re-invent the most tired game licence on the planet and add a bit more appeal to games that already own 6 copies of previous DW games. I mean, if they keep the graphics low key and just work on the server side of the multiplayer you could be looking at cross-platform matches (similar to shadowrun with Vista and 360) between Xbox360 and PS3....... and that alone would get the fanboys parting their hard earned cash to be a part off!!!!

Smoov_B
Smoov_B

borrrring do the enemies actually do anything other than surround you and stand there?

alkaline_DnB
alkaline_DnB

dynasty warriors + giant robots = poopy game

killer295
killer295

it better be 30 bucks cuz i would not spend more on this game

donscrillinger
donscrillinger

now this game is cold .as long as the story is long and not going over the same levels ,and they put in co-op on and offline this game will be killing'em.it looks very fresh so far .

brutal_kid
brutal_kid

man it's just dynasty warriors with a bunch of robot models and futuristic planes, it should be cheap. plus these things usually get boring after a while.

guardianlegend7
guardianlegend7

I had the Japanese version for my PS3. It was OK. I wouldn't pay more than $25 for it though.

Ariolander
Ariolander

I liked Zeonic Front. It was the shnitz "Though the game doesn't use the Sixaxis' motion sensing, it does include rumble on the 360." Score one for the 360!

printice21
printice21

the best gundam game ever was on the dreamcast ine been pissed every time ive played a gundam game since! i have a little hope for this one but not much.

loumart08
loumart08

I don't really know what everyone is complaining about, this will probably be the best Gundam game ever. Most Gundam games are are mega crap.

marco0798
marco0798

Man i cant wait for this i LOVE Gundam this is gonna be one of my must gets. and in reply to an earlier comment the PS3 people will make this bigger then it really is cos they got nothing (im a 360/wii person) but ZOMG i cant wait Suit Zero FTW!!!

Kezman118
Kezman118

Waiting for the reviews will be my best choice

rosscero
rosscero

really bad... we, xbox 360 players, can have better games...but ps3 players will embrace this game like we liked Halo 3 :P

Gadeos
Gadeos

looks good to rent

EdwardLau
EdwardLau

Despite being an avid Dynasty Warriors fan, this does not impress me. It looks like the AI is worst than before.

tig1979
tig1979

I have to agree KOEI's button mashing has never inspired me, its like Streets of Rage but better graphics but even then compared to the KOEI titles i have played streets of rage is better! The gameplay is just so dull and boring hit 2 buttons.....shouldn't we be beyond this now with all the technology these next gen systems have?

asmodeus_z
asmodeus_z

Had enough of button mashing - I'll pass for now.

bigmick07
bigmick07

not a big fan of hitting the b button a million times...... so i think i'll pass

thetealcaptain
thetealcaptain

maybe this is what they need to breathe new life into the dynasty warriors dynasty... Hopefully they won't spend too much time on the graphics and ignore the AI.... Mindless buttonmashers are good for an hour or two of lower brain function activity. So hopefully this will be better than the last few spewed forth from them...

jmrwacko
jmrwacko

okay... ... are you s**ting me?

jivekibbles
jivekibbles

Dynasty warriors i liked, but now with robots?! *worry* I dunno, summat tells me it aint gonna work, Koei and namco, plz prove me wrong! =) EDIT: oh dear, jst watched the video, ive lost all hope for dynasty, the AI looks even more awful than it was before, did any of you guys see any of the enemies attack more than 3 times (not including the duel at the end) anyway, im dissapointed in what i saw, Hopefully the full game will have more juicyness than what i saw there, Peace out ^^

saturndust
saturndust

This is gonna suck as the last DW did... what happened to KUF T_T?

jameeler91
jameeler91

Its just DW but Gundam version maybe a little less of 2-button play but still button mashing