I have been a long time Front Mission fan, and an even longer Mecha fan. Robots are COOL. PERIOD. As a result, I’ll play all sorts of mech games good or bad. So why am I so hung up on Front Mission Evolved?
Front Mission Evolved is a bit of a departure from the traditional Front Mission games, as they are originally turn-based strategy RPGs. My first experience was Front Mission 3 on the PSX and while I only had a chance to rent it (I didn’t get to buy a lot of games back then), I loved every moment of the game that I played.
So, why the 3rd person action game now?
Well, it so happens that the Front Mission development team did in fact toy with a 3rd Person shooter sort of Front Mission, or rather, just a departure from the standard strategy RPG that was Front Mission 1 through to Front Mission 5.
North America didn’t really get a taste of Front Mission Online, though I imagine I’d heard of it and forgotten about it, simply because I knew there was no chance I’d ever get the chance to play it.
Well, so Front Mission has ventured into 3rd person territory before, so why should I be worried?
Well, FMO was developed by the internal Square Enix team that has ALWAYS worked on Front Mission. Asking them to try something new and turn their baby into a 3rd person action game, with the online scale that FMO features, was probably a dream come true for Front Mission fans.
Why so pessimistic about Evolved? Because Square Enix has done something I can’t really condone. They passed off one of their longest running franchises onto another developer team, Double Helix Games.
While Double Helix has produced some interesting games such as MDK waaaay back on the PSX, and most recently, Silent Hill: Homecoming, these guys generally do trashy movie spin-off games that just don’t rate well.
Even that, I had a chance to ask Brad of the 4PlayerPodcast about his impressions of Front Mission Evolved after he played the demo availible at E3 2010 (CLICK IT. My comments are there with a response! True story, yo!), and he’s a longstanding Front Mission fan who was sorely saddened by the garbage gameplay he endured.
The game is due out Sept 28th. Nothing else is out that week that interests me, unless I forgot. I’m on the fence. I want the game badly, yet how can I fork up 60-70 bucks for what is likely to be a garbage game that I will never enjoy? (It supposedly controls WORSE than Armored Core, and AC can be stiff for a fast-paced mech game. :S) Maybe I should give them the benefit of the doubt and hope that it pays off as well as Castlevania: Lords of Shadows and MercurySteam controversy that was going on up till all the major gaming sites like Kotaku and Joystiq began previewing the game?
I wish Square Enix would let me preview this game.