Mobile Suit Gundam: Crossfire Review
Mobile Suit Gundam: Crossfire box art
System: PS3 Review Rating Legend
Dev: BEC 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Namco Bandai 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Released: Nov 2006 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1 - 2 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
Review by Patrick 3.5 - 3.9 = Good
Easily the worst game on the PS3.
by Patrick Evans

Oh, NamcoBandai, we want to come out and say this up front. We here at CCC forgive you. The pain and suffering you have caused us by publishing this stinker of a PS3 game has been great, but we still love you. Mobile Suit Gundam: Crossfire, which for whatever reason was the greatest selling PS3 at system launch, is a complete mess with terrible controls, horrid visuals, bland customization mechanics, and weak presentation. Namco, just think of this as an intervention.

MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM screenshot

But where to start with such an embarrassment? The only reason to explain the sales in Japan would be fanboys who gobble this garbage up, for what reasons I can’t understand. Even though this game is based on an anime series from 1979, the presentation would lead you to think otherwise. Instead of anime cut scenes to advance the story between missions, text boxes tell the tale of Zeon forces taking on the United Earth Federation. How cool would it have been if little snippets of either originally drawn scenes, original cuts from the series, or even cutscenes using the in-game engine were used to tell the story. Instead, on the next-gen PS3, we get text boxes. Sweet..

Advertisement

Players get to choose which side of the conflict they fight for, and the differences are notable. Zeon suits seem to be a little stronger early on, and the Zeon campaign missions, especially in the early going, are a bit easier. Either way you go, the gameplay itself is quite embarrassing. The Mobile Suits move exactly as one would expect a sixty-foot tall walking robot; clumsily and without any shred of finesse. I’ve seen the show damnit. Some of the things that the mobile suits do in the original series was impressive and cool to watch. The coolest thing that these suits can do is hover in mid-air and slide to move fire. We’ve seen all of this done before in the Mech Assault series, but the robots there were much easier to control.

MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM screenshot

Combat is even more broken. Never in my life have I played a third-person action game that was this difficult to fight an enemy. When firing your rifle or other ranged weapon, you don’t get a targeting reticule unless you are zoomed in on your target. If you are aiming this way, though, you are a sitting duck for enemy fire since you can’t move at the same time. Strafing with the L1 button doesn’t help much either since these mobile suits couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn. It’s like they are using ten-dollar paintball guns instead of futuristic weaponry. Frustration with the controls will quickly evolve into utter disdain for this game when you couple the crappy interface scheme with the missions you have to accomplish. As early as the second or third mission, multiple mobile suits will crash on you at a time, forcing you to pray instead of strategize on which target to engage first..

Mobile Suit Gundam attempted to alleviate some of this pain by offering a couple different customization options and the ability to add extra crewmates to you squad, but the developers managed to screw this aspect up even worse than the controls themselves. Squadmates that you hire are about as dumb as a third coat of paint. They will constantly get in your way as you target enemies from afar. The worst is when you engage groups of two or more. While you struggle to land a single strike on one guy, his buddy will be slicing your partner to shreds. Squadmates are at best an annoyance and at worst a liability, but they are necessary to serve as a distraction if nothing else with the illogically uneven situations you are thrown into.

MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM screenshot

My horror story takes place as early as the Zeon campaign’s third mission. The objective is to clear the area of enemy MS before your tank squad arrives. Ok, simple enough. Walking into the area with my partner, we go up against three Federation Suits. I chase after the nearest one looking for a quick axe strike, but the other two quickly close in on my AI companion and make mincemeat out of it. So now it’s two on one. I manage to take out the first of the two, but lose my left arm. I get the last one, but my head gets knocked off. Alright, mission finished right? Oh no. The tanks show up and another THREE enemy MS engage from the other side of the dilapidated urban area. This fight was over before it started, and I have to count down from 50 so as to not sling the PS3 controller in anger.

You have to figure, given everything that is screwed up about this game, perhaps they got the customization aspect right? Wrong again. Upgrading your Suit involves selecting “Weapon” “Defense” or “Attack” instead of adding specific parts. What does upgrading your weapon do you ask? Well, if you’re lucky, it adds a weapon or ammunition for an existing weapon. The trouble is you have no idea what you will actually get before hand, so there’s no way to be sure if it’s worth it or not. Worse than that is the fact that you can only upgrade one aspect of the MS at a time once per day. Upgrade BOTH the armor AND the machine gun at the same time? No sir! Mechanics apparently don’t comprehend the idea of overtime, and your play will suffer for it.

As ugly as all these complaints sound above, the game itself is even uglier. Barren combat zones that sport literally nothing but the occasional forest or urban areas are all you will see. And then you ask yourself, “The power of the PS3, which keeps all other games from slowing in framerate, must keep this game blazing fast right?” Oh, if only we were so lucky. Your mech will creep along at 15 FPS if you are lucky. Worst yet, the MS themselves animate oddly. There’s something about the way they run in action that simply doesn’t look right. The best way to describe it is it looks like you are playing against people and lag is popping up constantly. If that wasn’t bad enough, the collision detection must have been handled by a blind man, because you’ll swing at things with your melee weapons and miss constantly.

MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM screenshot

Having played this title at E3 in May, I had an idea that this title would be bad long before I had to review it. It was clunky, ugly, and slow before, and its clunky, ugly, and slow now. The only difference is that now, there no chance for it to get any better. Avoid this title like a 12th century leper. It’s easily the worst game of the launch, the worst giant robot game ever, and front runner for worst anime-inspired game in history.

Features:

  • Live the war of the future: Witness the high-definition CG quality graphics reanimate the world around you! Powered by PlayStation 3, Mobile Suit Gundam: Crossfire lets you immerse yourself in futuristic war zones across the globe, ultra realistically brought to life!
  • Choose your side to fight for! Join the Federation Army’s experimental Mobile Suit squad or join the ruthless Zeon mercenary force! Experience the war from both sides.
  • Command your Mobile Suit Squad: Be the squad leader of either The Earth Federation Force or The Zeon Forces to command your own MS squad. Strategize your plan of attack prior to the engagement and give orders to your MS squad under rapidly changing battle circumstances. You can order them to attack, halt, gather, scatter, dash to the front, barrage and more! You will be given many types of missions that require strategies and tactics.
  • Realistic location specific destruction physics: Each body part of a mobile suit has its own unique durability. Target specific parts of an enemy mobile suit for various types of damaging effects! Destroy hands, arms, legs and heads for different results!
  • Upgrade and Customize your Mobile Suits! Accomplish your mission objectives to claim achievement points! Use your achievement points carefully to strategically upgrade and customize your MS! You can reinforce its armor, upgrade its weapon, strengthen its attack power and more! There are over 30 mobile suits for you to control!

    By Patrick Evans
    CCC Staff Writer

    Rating out of 5
    Rating Description

    2.0

    Graphics
    Hey, at least the robots actually look like robots..

    1.3

    Control
    Good luck aiming at your enemies without an aiming reticule and good luck avoiding fire while your aiming at moving targets.

    2.0

    Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
    The dubbed dialog is as cheesy and poorly acted as a 1980s anime.

    0.9

    Play Value
    Anyone with half a brain will put this down after five minutes of dying while your allies dance around doing nothing.

    1.3

    Overall Rating - Avoid
    Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.
  • Screenshots / Images

    X
    "Like" CheatCC on Facebook