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Dynasty Warriors Gundam
The Dynasty Warriors series of hack-and-slash style action games haven't exactly been critical darlings throughout their lifespan, but they have managed to attract a cult audience, of which this reviewer is a proud member. There's something rather cathartic about playing hero by leading your small band of soldiers to victory against a larger army, felling hundreds and sometimes thousands of enemies in the process.
Yes, some decry the monotony of the button-mashing action, but the fact is that there are many of us who find it to be quite enjoyable. What could possibly be better than that? Well, how about adding some giant robots to the mix? That's just what Koei, the developers of the Dynasty Warriors and Samurai Warriors games, did in 2007 when they teamed with Namco Bandai to create Dynasty Warrior Gundam, an Xbox 360 (and PS3) title that takes the Dynasty Warriors gameplay out of Three Kingdoms era China and put it into the Mobile Suit Gundam anime universe.
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If you're familiar with the Dynasty Warriors games, then you know the basics of this tactical action title. You lead a battalion of warriors who must combat an opposing army, but you can't just charge headlong into battle. Instead, you need to pay attention to different objectives that must be completed, including capturing various checkpoints on the map, defeating certain enemy bosses, and rescuing your allies if they start getting routed. That’s not to say that there isn't plenty of ass kicking, because there is. In fact, in addition to your regular attacks, you can also build up and unleash special Musou attacks, which do an incredible amount of damage to multiple opponents.
Of course, DW: Gundam does deviate from the formula in some pretty noteworthy ways. For one thing, since you're piloting giant mech units this time out, you have a few more tricks up your sleeves, such as blaster attacks and the ability to hover and fly. It’s a nice mix of familiar and fresh that should appeal to fans of this Koei series. All of this is available for one or two players, and fortunately you can team up with an ally to tackle the somewhat difficult campaign modes.
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I am by no means a fan of or an expert on Mobile Suit Gundam and its numerous spinoffs, but from what I can understand, the game features several popular robots and story arcs from various series, including the original Mobile Suit Gunda, Zeta Gundam and ZZ Gundam. There are two main play modes, Official Mode and Original Mode. In Official Mode, players can take the role of a half-dozen different characters from the anime and play through actual storylines. On the other hand, Original Mode allows gamers to experience an original plot featuring the massive robots. Undoubtedly, fans of the Gundam series will appreciate the inclusion of both canon and never-before-seen stories.
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Graphics and Sound
The game is a visual treat. The robots look incredible, and the action is fast and furious, with no framerate issues whatsoever. Sound effects are good too, and the voice acting cast features the work of some actors from the original English-language dubs of the various Gundam series. Solid work on the whole, and if you're an otaku, what more could you possibly ask for?
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Yes, there are some people who will find the gameplay in Dynasty Warriors Gundam to be a little on the repetitive side, but if you're a fan of the series and you like causing massive carnage with giant robots, you'll most likely enjoy your time with this Xbox 360 title. It is a touch on the hard side, though, so you might want to rent first to ensure that you're up to the challenge.
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More Dynasty Warriors Information
Crave more information on the Dynasty Warriors franchise? Here are some other articles that you will want to check out: