Sunday, August 21, 2016

SRW OG: The Moon Dwellers Thoughts

I just finished my 1st lap of the game and damn, I can already tell EX-Hard mode is gonna be a royal pain in the ass.
- So first of all, a good chunk of the sprites and attack animations were recycled directly from the previous OG game for the PS3, which is understandable. Nevertheless, they still look amazing in all their HD glory.

- Second, as I said before, the English translation is a bit messy, but you get used to it and won't hinder you at all to understand the story this time.

- Third, with only 47 stages, the game feels a bit short, especially compared to the previous one, which had 60+ stages. In fact, you will be struggling to hit level 50 and above with your main pilots by the end of the game.

- Being the debut of the J cast, the plot revolves mainly around Touya, Calvina and the Fury, with a mix of the GC guys and fucking Crossgates creating dimensional disasters.

Now, for the mechanics of the game, I should start with the stellar mecha of this entry. If you played SRW J in the GBA, you'll remember that the Granteed was a complete monster which enemies used to suicide against. This time? Not so much. In fact, this game is actually pretty harsh on Granteed due to a series of factors: it has very poor range or movement, its only post movement attack has a range of 1 and Touya has garbage stats. So yeah, while it may be the star of the show this time, Granteed is not that good, not even when you get its upgrade, as it doesn't get its finisher until the second to last stage!

What about Calvina? The Bellzelute is a fairly fragile real robot which focuses on range attacks. Despite its firepower being a little lackluster, the damn thing is almost untouchable and combined with Calvina's amazing stats and seishin pool, you have an awesome unit. Twin her up with Ing in the EX Exbein and you have a team able to solo almost every map by itself.

This time around, accuracy will be your main headache. The enemies are fairly agile and you'll notice that most of your units have a real hard time landing hits, to the point that using Strike is almost mandatory for them. EX-Hard mode already sounds real charming due to this issue, not to mention that many stages use city maps, which mess up even further the hit ratios.

Finally, in my opinion, the game felt like a prelude for a greater entry, as The Moon Dwellers set up flags that hint that the next game will finally tackle the whole @3 events and with the Crossgates excuse, further crazy stuff is now possible (maybe Valzacard?).

Overall, it is a good game, but not as mind blowing as 2nd OG was when it was released. The fact it is in English may prompt more people to get started with the SRW games.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

MG Hi Nu Gundam Ver. Ka

Amuro is ready to stop Axis!
The Hi Nu Gundam was already a powerhouse given that its funnels could return after being launched to recharge, allowing it multiple attacks with them unlike the Nu. But with the Heavy Weapons System extra armor and weapons, this Gundam becomes a mobile fortress.
The HWS configuration includes removable chobham armor to increase its defense and includes:
- Two shoulder missile pods that flank both sides of the head.
- A pair of missile launchers mounted in the chest that can use a wide variety of munitions.
- The additional frontal skirt armors hide a pair of beam sabers attached to mechanical arms, ready to surprise any enemy in melee combat, just like The O.
- On the sides of the legs there is a pair of additional thrusters for enhanced speed and mobility.
Then we have the High Mega Shield, which incorporates a pair of mega particle cannons and is mounted on top of the original shield, which, should be noted, retains its weaponry. The whole thing is simply gigantic and really intimidating.
Finally, we have its main weapon, the Hyper Mega Rifle. At its maximum output, its power is comparable to that of a battleship-class mega particle cannon. This rifle is also capable of ultra-long-range sniping and features a bipod for precision firing, although in this kit, said bipod is immobile. The construction is a bit curious, as the original beam rifle is inserted in the pieces that compose the larger rifle.
It is not as heavy as the shield, and thanks to a clamp at the end of the rifle that attaches to the arm, the model can actually lift it with no problem.
As expected, with all the extra armor and weapons, the kit is pretty much immobile, but that isn't a problem for me, as since I began to build it, I expected it to remain in this pose. It just looks awesome. Perhaps the main issue is the weight of the shield, as it sags down the whole kit to the left no matter what. In order to stand up, you need to play a bit with the waist and the clear support base.
In the end, those three months of work and effort paid off. My only regret is that with so much stuff attached, turning on the LED to light up the eyes is pretty much impossible. I hope Bandai finds a way in the future to give this feature an easier access.
The MG Hi Nu Gundam is a fantastic kit. A mere out of the box build will be enough for anyone to make it look good. Just be ready for the nightmare that is putting on the decals for the funnels.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

SRW OG: The Moon Dwellers Get!

At long last, the newest SRW game is here!
It feels a little weird to play a SRW in English once again, as the OG games for the GBA were released so long ago...
Still, the translation is far from perfect...
It is not that you can't understand it, but there are TONS of typos, grammar mistakes and parts were the translation is way too literal, to the point it actually confuses you or barely makes sense.
Clearly, Bamco didn't really gave a shit since it is obvious there wasn't an editor to detect and correct all those mistakes. I hope this doesn't happen again for their next releases such as SRW V or the G Gen games.
Nevertheless, it is a real joy to see the J cast in glorious HD, although Calvina keeps jobbing in the Bellzelute (it is kinda unfair to make a comparison due how special the Granteed is).
Anyways, I'll be be playing this for a good while.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

MG Hi Nu Gundam Ver. Ka WIP 6

Amuro's ultimate ride is almost ready to sortie!
The funnels came out mostly ok after topcoating them,save two cases: in one, the edge of a decal wrinkled a bit. In the other, a thin edge of a decal actually raised a bit, so I had no choice but to cut that little bit off.
Nevertheless, I'm pretty satisfied with the final result, as the completed suit looks just fantastic.
Still, once you attach the six funnels, the weight becomes just too much for the model, so the little clear support base is a must for it to merely stand up.
Now, it is just missing its main weapons, with any luck, those will be ready next weekend!

Sunday, July 31, 2016

MG Hi Nu Gundam Ver. Ka WIP 5

All those decals on the funnels were ridiculous.
They still have to be topcoated, as it rained nonstop during the weekend and with weather so humid I wasn't going to risk ruining the job just because I was in a hurry.
Only two more sections to go down, the rifle and the shield. With the HWS add on parts, these will also become ridiculously big. I just hope they are heavy enough to balance the backpack once the six funnels are attached.