Sunday, 17 February 2013

That Gundam Game I've Never Played

While Gundam is a pretty big thing here in Japan, I've never been too much of a fan.  That said, one thing that has always sparked my interest is Gundam: Bonds of the Battlefield.  Most people probably don't even know it's called that because it's usually written like 機動戦士ガンダム 戦場の絆, but it's most famously known for its huge pods that the player must sit in to play.

So as far as I understand it, you get in that giant pod and pilot a Gundam to blow the shit out of other Gundams and fulfil objectives.  You can customise your giant robot so it can do all sorts of fancy shit, and as far as I know you can play online against other people all over Japan.

Sounds fuckin' awesome right?  Well you'd probably be correct but there is a problem with this game, and that's the pricing.  Gundam: Bonds of the Battlefield is not the kind of game where you can just hop in and start playing. 

Before you even think about playing you have to drop 300 yen on a stat card.  This used to be called a pilots licence but I think it was recently changed to some generic stat card that works with other games.  Then on top of that you have to drop another 300 yen...for ONE CREDIT!  300 yen for a single play is pretty steep considering I can play regular games for 100, and older ones for anything between 10 and 50 yen.

Not only that but you have to wade through all sorts of menus to set yourself up and then read absolute shit tons of Japanese so you know what your doing, how to play, the objectives etc etc. it's head spinning.  It's the kind of game that you have to study, and I don't really want to have to do a crash course in giant robot related kanji to enjoy game about blowing shit up.

In something like Sengoku Taisen, the card battle game I've mentioned a few times on here, there is lots to read but you can do it at your own pace.  Also you can generally figure out what each new card does just by giving it a spin, and on top of that for 600 yen I can get anything between 3-5 plays depending on which game centre I go to.

Not to say that this Gundam game is bad, it's probably really fucking good, but it's not the sort of time/money investment I want to make when I know my time in Japan is limited right now.  Maybe when I make a return (and trust me, I will), I'll whip out the dictionary and give it a spin, but until then I'll stick to my trading cards.

(If someone wants to e-mail me a crash course, the address is on the side)

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