Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn is a new game in the long running series. This new iteration celebrates over 30 years of the famous Gundam anime/manga series and puts them all into one game.
I’ve never played a Dynasty Warriors game in my life, and know little about Gundam. Going into playing Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn, I wasn’t sure what to expect. After playing the game for several hours, I have a new-found love for Gundam, but the game itself needs a little work.
The main mode in the game is called the “Official Mode”. The Official Mode has all the Gundam anime series there has ever been made. This includes Gundam, Zeta Gundam, Gundam: Char’s Counterattack, Gundam Unicorn, Gundam Seed and Gundam Destiny. All in all, you can play through six of the different series all in this one game. Pretty cool if you are a huge Gundam fan and want to relive all the famous battles and scenes.
What I like about the Official Mode is that it had decent storytelling and was able to summarize what is going on. I have to admit, sometimes I didn’t know what was happening, but hardcore fans will know exactly what’s going on. The game tries its best to tell the story in a condensed form, and also portrays it in all in Japanese. There are no Western voice-overs that might ruin the atmosphere. Don’t worry though, you can still read the subtitles in English.
Since I was a beginner, I had no idea how intense the battles can be in Dynasty Warriors games. Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn turns the battles up a notch since you are piloting a mobile suit. A mobile suit is a huge mech that has laser swords and guns. You can also press and hold the “X” button to glide around levels at a faster rate. I have to say, piloting the mobile suits in the game is a pretty cool experience.
One thing that this game does right in making you feel like a real “badass”. Normally in other games, enemies can overwhelm you when there are lots of them surrounding you. I know it can be really hard fighting lots of zombies in a game like Dead Rising. In this game however, multiple enemies means you can have more fun. Most of the enemies are just fodder for you to destroy. It feels empowering literally destroying hundreds of enemies in one stage. In other games, you rarely get a chance to just mow down enemies with such ease.
As great as it feels when you destroy multiple enemies, the gameplay shortly becomes too repetitive for its own good. I ended up just mashing the Square and Triangle buttons all the time and still managed to dish out cool combos. You can vary the combat slightly by using your special move by pressing R2. Special moves look very cool and can annihilate hoards of enemies in one swoop. You cannot use it all the time, but it’s cool once you get a chance to initiate a special move.
The mission structure and level design is where Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn falls flat. This isn’t like other hack-n-slash games where you can look around and explore levels as well as solve puzzles along the way. In this game, most missions just consist you of destroying multiple enemies in one location before you can move on. Once you do move on, the mission will tell you to do the same thing all over again. Not to mention the levels look all similar even when I played a different Gundam series. Levels are small and condensed which doesn’t really make them very fun to play in.
One thing I think this game is missing are boss battles. Bosses in this game aren’t really bosses as they are as disposable as any other enemy on the battlefield. There are brief moments where you can face off, but most of the time they’re camouflaged among the rest of the enemies. I usually end up just using my special move and they’re dead already.
One reason I really wanted boss battles to occur is because the cutscenes in the game look amazing. The cutscenes show epic battles that the main characters engage in with some of the main antagonists. They look awesome, although the combat in the actual game isn’t so stylish and fluid. Once you see the cutscenes, you kind of feel that the gameplay look kind of cheap in comparison.
Another thing that Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn does wrong is its painfully easy difficulty. I thought a game that has hundred of enemies onscreen at the same time would be hard. Nope, you can breeze through the game without worrying about your health bar on almost any difficulty setting. Easy and Normal difficulties I could play the game with my eyes closed. Only the supposed Hard mode was a challenge, but still quite easy to play.
Graphically, Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn looks okay but is nothing special. I admire they were able to animate so many enemies on the screen at the same time with no frame rate drops. However, the levels themselves look drab and start looking after a while. Maybe the game could have looked better had this been on the PS4 instead of the PS3 instead.
In terms of content, there is a wealth of things you can unlock. Throughout the game, you can unlock more skills and equip better armor and weapons for your mobile suits. You can also pilot several different mobile suits too. Not only that, but you can read up on the characters, listen to the soundtrack, rewatch cutscenes and more. Hardcore Gundam fans will love all the content that you can unlock.
Overall, I felt Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn was a mixed bag. There are times of brilliance the game offers, but the repetitive gameplay is what holds it down several notches. You’ll love this game if you are used to Dynasty Warriors games, but everyone else might think the combat gets boring after a few minutes. For Gundam fans, there is tons of content packed in here for you.
Dynasty Warriors: Gundam Reborn
- Available On: PS3, PS Vita
- Published By: Bandai Namco Games
- Developed By: Omega Force
- Genre: Action
- US Release Date: July 1st, 2014
- Reviewed On: PS3
- Quote: "Gundam Reborn has a lot of fan service for Gundam fans, but the repetitive nature of Dynasty Warriors gameplay ultimately holds the game back."