Saturday, April 21, 2012

Gundam Video Games In the Arcade and Home

Ever want to pilot a Gundam or a big robot?  Well, there is a simulator for that called Mobile Suit Gundam: Bonds of the Battlefield.  It looks kind of cool, but I think I'd be spending quite a few $$$ getting good at it.  I really like the concept of being in the cockpit and the little extra's they have thrown in to try and make the experience immersive.
Inside of Gundam Game Pod   Flickr / ryanshultz
"Kidō Senshi Gundam: Senjō no Kizuna (機動戦士ガンダム 戦場の絆), is a Japanese arcade game set in the original Gundam universe (Mobile Suit Gundam). The game was created by Bandai Namco and Banpresto and was released late 2006. Play involves stepping into a P.O.D. (Panoramic Optical Display) and doing battle with other players across Japan at other arcades or the same one." From Wikipedia.

Gundam Game Pods

Gundam is about giant humanoid robots that you climb inside to pilot and then do battle with other giant robots.  There is always a lot of talk about peace in these games, but war keeps breaking out, as no one gets along.  These Gundam Game pods simulate the Gundam cockpit with robot driving controls (complete with 2 sticks and foot pedals), video, microphone and audio communications with your team mates and you battle with other players in one or more arcades.  People outside the pod can watch displays to see how the battle is going and you need to cooperate with team mates to win.   This game isn't exactly new as it has been around for years and there is lots of online co-op team play these days, but it would be the Gundam theme and the cockpit environment that are the selling features.  This game is only located at select arcades, one of which is in  Akihabara Sega World, but a number of other countries such as Taiwan also have a few arcades with it.

Check out this link to the manufacturers site to view more about the game first hand.
Very nice overview of the game.
In depth how it works article.

How The Game Works (super short summary)
Sign up to play as there are registration lists.  Pay money ... :) 
  1. Create a pilot card then choose to join with the Earth Federation or with the Principality of Zeon. Players choose their pilot's name and other characteristics. 
  2. New players should choose beginners to fight on a separate map, "Australia Training Area" for new pilots.  You fight in the same basic mechas for both sides and respawn when you die.
  3. When you get promoted you can then fight online in your same class level using the main maps.  You will be fighting players of similar rank in teams.  Yeah. Go against Char right out of the academy. Fun game for 2 seconds....
  4. You will gain points after each battle to upgrade your Mobile Suit with better weapons, equipment, or even upgrade suits.
  5. Rinse, wash, and repeat!

What If There Is No Arcade Nearby?
It looks like Sony is giving you your Gundam fix from the comfort of your home in Japan... Doh.
Up to six players can join the Federation or Zeon Forces to play each other on their PlayStation 3s via the Sony Entertainment Network. You can pilot mobile suits, vehicles, and be on foot to take the fight to the enemy.

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