Monday, October 18, 2010

Front Mission Evolved | Review

Synopsis: Front Mission is back to the future, 2171, to be specific in this recent installment to the series, players are put in the third person perspective of both the wanzers and pilots. What’s a wanzer you ask; well it is a codename for wanderpanzers, which is an armored humanoid battle vehicle that you will pilot in a number of battles around the globe. Toting the new “Evolved” to the title brings in a number of new features to the gameplay, such as third person perspective, online gameplay, and the ability to play as the pilot, Dylan Ramsey, without his wanzer. Without any further anticipation, get ready to arm your wanzer and take to the battlefield in this review of Front Mission Evolved.

Praise: The extent of my mech or wanzer experience lays solely with Front Mission for the DS, Mech Warrior 2, and F.E.A.R. 2 as there aren’t a lot of these types of games out there. I was however pleasantly surprised by this title as the gameplay is fast and fluid while the customization options for your wanzer’s arms, shoulders and backpack are virtually limitless. With each kill of the opposition you will earn cold hard cash to throw new weapons to your artillery along with skills and abilities so that each mission can potentially play differently. The single player story mode is great practice before taking your wanzer online for some heavy metal destruction, and the level system was a smart move to show off bragging rights and earn new weapons, unfortunately, I am only a level 8 so far, which means no bragging from me…yet. The graphics look good if not great most of the time, but one thing that made me fall in love with Square years back is the cinematic cut scenes, in which there are a plenty that look amazing as expected.

Gripes: To start I did not like the gameplay when you play as pilot Dylan without his wanzer as it felt really generic. There is also this feature called EDGE which can be used once charged but I did not notice any difference or benefit as is just seemed to turn the screen grey and the enemies red. While I did not have a problem trying to find games online, I did notice I would play the same people a couple times in one sitting, which kind of worries me about the online community for this title, as it normally doesn’t last long before no one else is playing, luckily there aren’t many games in the mech genre. There isn’t much replay value to the single player campaign which lasts about 7 to 8 hours playing on normal, without being too much of a challenge to complete.

Overall, Front Mission Evolved was rather fun to play through aside from the times played without my wanzer. Though I mentioned there isn’t much replay value to the single player campaign, it is a great way to learn how to play before taking your battle online, as that is where most of the fun is. Diehard fans of this genre will like having a new title to play, though controls seem to be easy enough to pick up and play without the technical customization options found in previous titles, action is fast enough to keep the matches coming. Wanzer up cowboy and keep an eye out for me, as I will be playing this online for a while. gives Front Mission Evolved a 7 out of 10.

Front Mission Evolved is available now for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC.

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