Guilty Gear Dust Strikers E3 2005 Hands-On

Read our E3 2005 hands-on preview to find out how Majesco is bringing the distinct 2D fighting of the Guilty Gear series to the Nintendo DS.


Guilty Gear Dust Strikers is one of a pair of handheld versions of ARC System Works' 2D fighting series scheduled for release this year. We spent some time playing the game, and it looks like it will be a completely unique fighter rather than a simple port of one of the console games.

Guilty Gear Dust Strikers is designed to fully use both screens as well as the wireless multiplayer features of the Nintendo DS. In Dust Strikers, you can connect with up to three other people for a four-player free-for-all fight. The fighting mechanics are based on the usual slash, kick, and super moves found in the other Guilty Gear games. However, the DS difference can be found in the fact that the game uses both screens, which makes for a vertically oriented, multitiered stage that will have you jumping up and down from level to level and screen to screen. At first, the transition as you jump from the bottom screen to the top is a bit awkward, as displays are different enough to make for a noticeable disparity in the quality of the graphics. You'll quickly get used to it though, and the graphics do look clear, colorful, and well animated regardless of whether you are on the top or bottom screen. However, the characters are quite a bit smaller than in the usual 2D fighter, since there are four characters onscreen at all times. Even when one character is knocked out, its body will remain on the ground until the fight is over. The game feels hectic, with action taking place on both screens simultaneously, and you'll often be fighting several people at once rather than engaging in isolated battles.

Aside from the wireless multiplayer and dual screens, Dust Strikers doesn't appear to use the unique DS features like the touch screen and microphone. According to Majesco, though, there will be various types of minigames incorporated into the final product. There are 21 characters in Dust Strikers, each with signature moves and storylines. If you've played any of the other games though, you won't see any new characters added to the roster here.

Guilty Gear Dust Strikers feels closer to Isuka than any of the other Guilty Gear titles due to the four-player simultaneous battles and odd, multitiered stages. However, there is plenty to be excited about for DS owners who are looking for a multiplayer fighting game. Stay tuned for details as Majesco prepares to release the game later this year.

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