One thing I always wanted when growing up was a Gundam game where you felt as powerful as the Gundam Pilots in the series Gundam WING (and that was a lot of “Gundam” in one sentence). I wanted a game that made you feel the formidable opponent that they always were.
Yet every Gundam game that came out was either a one on one, 2D fighting game or a small scale arcade beat-em-up type escapade like Federation VS Zeon. There never seemed to a be a game that let you slice your way through hordes of Mobile Suits like the heroes of the various anime series did.
That was until Gundam was thrown into a blender with the hack-and-slash action series called Dynasty Warriors. This created the incredibly imaginative game series called Dynasty Warriors: Gundam, a hectic, fast-paced, brawler-type hack-and-slash game where you control one of a variety of different Gundam and other Mobile Suits. On the cover, it seemed like everything I had been asking for, but was it a dream game or a nightmare-inducing failure? Let’s take a look!
Reviewing the storyline of Dynasty Warriors: Gundam is actually a pretty hard thing to do. Not because it’s excessively long or full of twists, but because there isn’t one specific storyline. Instead, you can play through the events of various different Gundam series, specifically the following three series;
- The original 0079
- The sequel, Zeta Gundam
- The sequel to that, called ZZ Gundam
Now, these storylines are obviously only as good as the source material. Thankfully, the source material is really good. I may be biased in that a bit, but I can admit that ZZ Gundam isn’t the best story out there. If they had only used that series as the basis for the game, I probably wouldn’t have enjoyed Official Mode (or Story Mode) as much.
Thankfully, they included the first two Gundam series, both of which have incredible storylines. So that really picks the game up a lot.
On top of this, you also get “Original Mode”, where you play through a storyline that mixes the characters from various different Gundam timelines into a single storyline thread. This storyline seems to take a lot of inspiration from the crossover manga called Mobile Suit Vs. Gigantis’ Counterattack, with the exception of replacing the primary antagonist with Mushu Gundam.
Each of the characters from the different Gundam series get to keep their own personalities and driving forces, which leads to a lot of very entertaining interactions between them. I don’t normally like crossover storylines, but I find that Dynasty Warriors: Gundam pulls it off brilliantly.
If you’ve ever played a Dynasty Warriors game, you’ll know what the gameplay of Dynasty Warriors: Gundam is, as they don’t change the formula at all. If not, then it can only be described as frantic. Effectively, you take control of one character (in this case one of the Gundam pilots and a Gundam of your choice) and jump into large scale skirmishes and battles alongside your cannon fodder army.
You’ll have to battle your way through hundreds and thousands of enemy Mobile Suits, as well as boss characters every now and then. This is done by shooting with your blasters, slicing with your beam swords and destroying everything in your path with special attacks. However, when it comes to the boss characters, they also have special attacks, so you need to fight against them strategically (or very quickly).
As well as the combat, you also get objectives that pop up in the middle of skirmishes that you need to complete, so tactical thought and planning are really important. This all comes together to make one of the most enjoyable and empowering Gundam games ever made.
Visually, the presentation of Dynasty Warriors: Gundam is really good. You would expect it to look nice since it was released on the PS3, but considering how many different character models (the Mobile Suits, in this case) are on screen at any one time, I didn’t notice any framerate drops. All of the animations were smooth, the enemies are crisp with no blurring or anything, and the visual effects when in combat look really nice.
The developers of Dynasty Warriors: Gundam did a really good job of bringing the various Mobile Suits and Gundam suits to live in 3D, each meticulously recreated from its respective Gundam series. I’m really impressed by how much attention to detail when into the graphics and visual presentation for Dynasty Warriors: Gundam. This is especially true when you consider how good the story and gameplay are as well. Typically, you get great graphics but low-quality storylines or gameplay. It’s very rare to get everything right.
Dynasty Warriors: Gundam does a really good job of getting all three aspects as close to right as possible, and it looks amazing for it.
And That’s All Folks
All in all, Dynasty Warriors: Gundam gave me exactly what I wanted from a Gundam game all those years ago. The storylines, both the Official Mode and Original Mode, are thoroughly entertaining and capture the heart and soul of Gundam. The gameplay is empowering, making you feel like you can do anything, since you’re killing thousands of enemies in each missions. And graphically, it looks superb for a Gundam game.
Have you played Dynasty Warriors: Gundam? Let me know what you thought about it in the comments below!