|Release: June 12, 2012|
|Screen Resolution: 480p||Alcohol Reference, Fantasy Violence, Mild Blood, Mild Language, Mild Suggestive Themes|
With the storyline and battles covered, that's pretty much all there is to Gungnir. Story scenes lead into battles, with only a short break to buy equipment, craft weapon upgrades, and recruit troops in between. There are no optional battles or explorable areas in Gungnir, and thus no opportunities to grind up levels for troops that are getting behind, other than failing and replaying one of the lengthy main battles. In this way, Gungnir practically requires the player to use only a small portion of the available troops, and battle often feels like an exercise in attempting to garner as much experience as possible for the lowest-level troops rather than strategically planning the best route to victory.
There's not much to say about Gungnir's audiovisuals. The battle screens and interface are generally serviceable, though not particularly stylish. The character portraits, seen in the traditional Japanese "talking head" conversations, are attractive, but seem off in several ways. There's not a wide enough range of emotions displayed on the characters' faces, meaning that character expressions don't always match the tone of the conversation. Most of the characters also look far too clean and shiny for the situations they're in, particularly the supposedly impoverished rebels. Gungnir's music does a better job of conveying the game's atmosphere than the graphics do, with suitably serious and grandiose tracks.
Although Gungnir's campaign will take a while to play through, that's solely due to the artificially lengthy battles. Though there are several possible endings based on the choices Giulio makes, I suspect most players won't have the patience to go through the exact same campaign a second time.
For some, Gungnir might be a game that has been helpfully stripped down to the basics, with no extraneous frills to artificially extend gameplay. For others, it will feel like a barebones effort with some problematic aspects to its battle system. Your mileage will vary based on how much you enjoy the kind of challenge Gungnir provides and how much patience you have for the battles. In general, I'd call Gungnir a fairly average example of the strategy RPG genre. It'll scratch the itch of hardcore strategy fans, but there's not a ton to miss by skipping it, either.
Date: July 10, 2012