Monday, July 18, 2016

Wartech: Senko no Ronde - Now I control the bullet hell!




This was one of my "I'm interested in this game titles." I saw random gameplay of this on youtube. It actually is pretty good. At the same time, this is a game with a small audience cause the majority will say, "Oh, it's another one of those anime fighters." This is why a lot of games with actual potential don't make it. Especially in the US. So if you didn't tell by the title. This is a bullet hell/Touhou/Grid fighter/anime fighting (whatever you wanna call it. I just said most of the titles right there) game. It's a fighting game. That actually does something different. If you're not already gone because of the first couple of sentences then okay read on.

So first off the Box art for this game is kinda decieving. I mean I look at the back of the box and see this to be something like Raiden Fighters or some other SHUMP game. If I didn't already know about the game then I would've been turned off awhile ago. But I already saw this game in Japanese. And gameplay on Youtube. And the front cover of the box looks like you're typical robot to save the world thing. This is one of those don't judge a book by its cover type games. I mean Mobile Light Force 2 was truly deceptive since the game is actually called Castle Shikigami and the girls that are on the front cover are no where to be found. And a title like "Mobile Light Force 2" along with that cover makes me think that it's some sort of adventure platformer with an insanely small budget.

Story Um...What???

This game has a story. But when I booted up the game I went WTF??? Seriously. I couldn't make sense of it. It talks about how mankind left Earth cause some kid was crying for over 100 years and they couldn't take it. That must be one loud baby. I know I'm missing a lot of information here but I feel that this is one of those you can't make sense of the story unless you have the instruction manual and there's probably another game that either came before this or it explains this game. Then they established that mankind is now living in space. But what does this have to do with why I'm fighting in the first place? So I start story mode. I still can't make sense of the game's plot. However this game does something I like with story mode. It uses the formula:

  1.  Witty Banter
  2.  Fight
  3.  Witty Banter
  4.  Next Stage
  5.  Repeat until the end...


Seriously why can't fighting games stick to this for there story modes?  Now its just let's talk for hours then maybe we'll fight. Oh and it's not gonna be with the character you want to use. I hope you know how to use him/her/it. I hate this way of story telling. First off it's like they're trying to force a movie on you. 2nd I'm still left in the dark on information about a certain character I may have taken an interest in.

Examples:

  • Blazblue Chronophantasma: So uh Taokaka is the strongest of the clan and is on a trip with Ragna. They reach the city and poof Taokaka is gone from the story for good. No she wasn't killed. She just ran off and found food. Bullet gets one fight and dissapears (she later get's her own story to explain some of her origins but that's it. Also she still only has one fight). 
  • Street Fighter V: So we establish that Ibuki, R.Mika, and Urien are in the story. But they don't do anything. Urien shows up for 1 fight then disappears. As if that's all he was paid for. Alex has 2 scenes 1 of which doesn't make any sense and you don't even play as him. 
  • Persona 4 Arena Ultimax: Ok so for one if you never played Persona 3 or 4 you won't know most of the character's backgrounds. At the same time. Any of the characters that were in the first game get no background story basically telling you, "Hey go play the other games." 


I hate this. It turns me off from being interested in the game's plot and makes me flip a coin whether to speed through story mode or to not even bother with it.

Anyway this game's story mode may do what I like. But I still can't make sense of it. The first story I play which the character's actually a dude to my surprise he has that feminine look (More on that later). His name is Mika. So the first few stages sounds like he's on a mission to stop someone or something.

During the fights the characters are still talking to each other. I don't mind it since 1. It's not distracting to gameplay. 2. It still plays to the witty banter formula. The game I beat the last boss and apparently he went against orders. Although Mika saved the day the military will think that he pulled an act of treason. So Mika leaves the military.

Um...what? I look up a guide which I should've done in the first place. Apparently there's certain fights where I'm supposed to let the characters talk it out. Not only that but I'm supposed to let them entire B.O.S.S. Mode. (explain later).  So that means there's more than 1 ending for each character and I have to meet the requirements.  This is kinda of an outdated thing to do. I mean the last time I had to do this was in Guilty Gear. Where I had to either finish with an overdrive, instant kill someone, or let time run out.  It's kinda annoying but that's better than being forced to sit down for hours, barely playing the game at all cause everyone needs to talk. Needless to say I can't figure out this story. I missing a lot of information here and doubt I'll get any.

I know what I just describe may be promoting to have more story modes like SFV, Persona 4 Arena: Ultimax, etc. But Wartech is simply just a bad example of what I like. If you want a better example take a look at Psychic Force 2012, Guilty Gear X2, Early Blazblue titles, and Tekken 5. They did it right.

Graphics - I Can Actually See Stuff

Well of course the graphics look good. I'm not gonna get all technical about it cause I don't care about the technical aspects of it. Anyway the main thing here is I can see. I say this cause its a bullet hell game and the way I describe "Bullet Hell" You're the dot. You're objective is to shoot big dots at the even bigger dot over there and avoid all the other dots. Yeah this is my usual complaint when it comes to anything with Bullet Hell in it.

(Touhou 8 - Imperishable Night) Okay WHERE THE HELL IS MY CHARACTER?!
The character designs are totally the kind of things you see in Bullet Hell games.  The mech's are designed somewhat weird compared to your standard "I obviously have more than enough artillery to kill you" type mechs. But they're unique.  Not really memorable at least until you unleash B.O.S.S. Mode. When you do that you turn into one of the many SHUMP bosses you'd normally see. Now this I remember. Especially since now they all look unique to each other. You have one that turns into a giant sword. Another one with the obvious you should come in here if you want to take shots at me but when you do I'm shooting this FU laser.

Another thing make note of is the character portraits. If you're one of those people that have trouble telling the difference between a guy or girl in an anime. You'll have trouble here too. Most of the guys look like girls and you might just say its girl until you look at his/her bio. This follows the anime rule of if it has boobs, then its female, if it doesn't, then its male.

Music

This is actually some relaxing techno music. It fits the game. When I listen to it I think of Raystorm. This something I should add to my list of soundtracks when I'm doing stuff. Can't really say much else on it other than I should look it up.


Gameplay

Now first off I didn't read the book till my 2nd gameplay. Which was a mistake. I thought this game would have a command list of sorts but it doesn't. Thankfully the guide has em. You have 3 generally attacks, a Dash button, guard, Overdrive and BOSS Mode. Now I got through the first couple of fights easily with just basic controls. But I didn't know about special moves so I was stumped at least until I started entering random commands. Even then I was having trouble. You're attacks have an ammo count. Once they're out of ammo you have to wait and let them recharge. And with me spamming and mashing like an idiot I kept dying.

B.O.S.S. Mode is a game changer. Since now you're turn into a giant mech and have bullets even greater bullet hell abilities than before. But you can still die in this mode. Now there is a strategy behind this. You want kill your opponent but they have a BOSS Mode available to use. So you activate yours and try to kill them so they won't use it on you as a last resort.  The general strategy of the game is to make inescapable situations for your opponent. Make an effective Bullet Hell.

During story mode and bonus stages of Score attack. You can't use Boss Mode against bosses. So you just have to survive. Which can get rather rough.  I guess this is my main problem here. There's certain attacks I want to use but it's very hard to control the direction I want to shoot it. This gets on my nerves especially when its crucial I try to land these attacks cause now I'm shooting in the wrong direction and now I'm pretty much dead.


Overall

Now I didn't try the online. Cause I don't have Xbox Live Gold. But I doubt there's many people if at all playing this cause one this game is old. And the fact that this game already has a small audience to begin with. So like Under Night In-Birth, Blazblue, Virtua Fighter, Virtua-On, etc. You'll be lucky to find someone playing this game. And if they are they're probably gods at the game. This game's learning curve is about the same as you're typical scrolling shooter. You learn how to avoid attacks and land you're own.

This game is okay. Not great but doesn't suck either. The only chance this game will get some actual publicity is through one of those "Mystery Game" tournaments. I do wish I could make sense of the story better cause like I said. I have a feeling that this is one of those games where you either need the instruction manual or you need to have played a previous game. Anyway if you want different spin on bullet hell games. Then go ahead and try this one. Otherwise you'll probably forget about this game's existence.