E3 2014: Rise of Incarnates is the Gundam Game We Never Got
Teamwork makes the dream work.
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Gundam Extreme Vs. is one of the most distinct and interesting fighting game franchises never to grace our Western shores. Battles are fought between teams of two, and it emphasizes teamwork and communication over complicated mechanics. Rise of Incarnates is about as close to a Gundam Extreme Vs. game as we’re going to get--even if it is lacking in the giant robot department. Rise mirrors many of the same mechanics that are in Gundam--the 2-on-2 fighting, the team-based strategy--but puts its own spin on these designs. Based on what I played, it feels a bit like Gundam Extreme Vs. with training wheels, but that’s OK when you’re introducing this style of combat to a new audience.
The goal in Rise is to defeat the opposing team and win the match. Each time a player is defeated, points are subtracted for that team’s score. The match is over when one team runs out of points. The fights themselves are a mixture of closer-quarters melee and long-range gunplay, with the different characters specializing more in one style or another.
Working with your partner, or at the very least paying attention to what your partner is doing, is key to winning the match. At times, you may need to rescue your partner from a jam, or vice versa. Each character also has certain attacks that will launch your opponent into the air, at which point the cursor will change indicating he or she is primed for a combo attack. Your partner will also notice the change and can then perform a follow-up attack that deals extra damage.
Skill customization is also a part of Rise of Incarnates, however I was only able to see a very limited version of it. In brief, players will unlock small power-ups, such as additional speed or defense, which they can apply to their fighters. Considering Rise is a free-to-play game, this could be cause for alarm, however Bandai Namco was quick to note that the goods they have for sale within the game are purely cosmetic only. Players won't be able to buy their way to a top-tier fighter.
If you want to see Rise of Incarnates in action, be sure to check out the video below from our E3 2014 live show.