Classic game review #1: Shin Kidou Senshi Gundam W: Endless Duel - TidusandYuna1983 Blog - www.GameInformer.com
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Classic game review #1: Shin Kidou Senshi Gundam W: Endless Duel

 

Since many older games cannot be reviewed on Gameinformer,I've decided I'll start a series of blogs in which I'll review classic games from the past.What I mean by classic games is great games released before the 7th generation(Playstation 3,Wii,Xbox360,PSP,NDS era).I'll mainly focus on 8-Bit,16-Bit and 5th gen(Saturn,PSone,N64)and the occasional 6th gen(PS2,GC,Xbox,GBA)title.I started gaming in the late 1980's and I remember gaming in the 1990's fondly and loved so many games from those periods that many younger gamers haven't heard of.

The first classic game I'm going to review is Shin Kidou Senshi Gundam W: Endless Duel.

Title:Shin Kidou Senshi Gundam W: Endless Duel

Genre:2D Fighting

Platform:Super Famicom

Developer:Natsume

Publisher:Bandai

Release date:March 29,1996 and the game has only been released in Japan.



Shin Kidou Senshi Gundam W: Endless Duel(which I'll abbreviate as GWED) is a 2D fighting game that was released only in Japan in early 1996 for Super Famicom(Super Famicom is the Japanese name for Super Nintendo).

It uses characters and mobile suits from the Gundam Wing series.Gundam Wing was one of my favorite anime series from the 1990's.

The core gameplay has much of the same feel as that of Super Street Fighter II,in fact people say GWED is like a modded Super Street Fighter II because of the similarity of many of the special moves and because of the fluidity of the fighting.However,what makes this game unique is the game incorporates the features of the mobile suits very well into the gameplay,which makes the gameplay fun and exciting in it's own way.For example,you can make your mobile suit shoot a cannon by simply pressing one button and your mobile suit will shoot it's cannon straight ahead and you'll even see a big target on the screen targeting your opponent.Interestingly,you have a limited number of bullets for your cannon,but bullet supply replenishes when you land successful hits on your opponent or at the start of a new around.

Another feature that made this game stand out for it's time is the boost feature which lets you jump extra high in the air and after you boost you can hover for a second or two and try to position yourself so you can quickly drop down towards your opponent and hit them with a combo attack.It can also be used tactically if you want to create a long distance from your opponent,let's say your opponent's mobile suit is low on health(I'll use the term health because you have a separate meter for energy)and your mobile suit still has a lot of health remaining and your opponent is trying to hit you with a barrage of combos and you want to try to remove their mobile suit's remaining health from a safe distance by using projectile attacks,the boost feature will be good for this.

Also,when you perform special moves,they use up some of your energy meter(not to be confused with health)but your energy meter recharges during fights and it's a way to stop players spamming special moves.

The mobile suits have weapons that are unique only to them and that have advantages and disadvantages in power,reach,radius of certain attacks,defense(how much damage it receives after being hit) and speed.For example,Deathscythe's scythe weapon gives his melee attacks good reach but his attacks are not powerful.Heavy Arms has an assortment of guns and missiles and can do some powerful projectile attacks and fire projectile attacks in multiple directions but it's special moves and stats are not well-suited to up-close fighting.The Wing Gundam is strong-all round in terms of melee attack power and with projectile attacks and for speed.Tallgeese's main advantage is it's boost allows it to jump higher than other mobile suits and it can hover for longer than the other mobile suits,giving it more time to drop down at an opponent and catch them off-guard with a combo.Mercurius has a melee weapon that looks like it's made from many spherical shapes that get charged-up with energy and that weapon has good range and flexibility so it can hit enemies over a wide radius and she can also activate an energy shield around her that makes her temporarily invincible but she can still hit you! There is other mobile suits but I don't want to mention all of them and there's 9 mobile suits that can be used right at the start and I think more mobile suits can be used in other modes.

However,the mobile suit roster is quite unbalanced.Mercurius has a definite unfair advantage other the other mobile suits and some of the mobile suits such as Sandrock and Vayeate are so inferior to the other mobile suits they feel redundant.

Otherwise,just think of this game as Super Street Fighter II with mobile suits.There is still a lot of delicate timing involved with special moves and with combos and you'll need to make use of basic attackes and special attacks and super attacks(super attacks are very powerful attacks that needed to be charged up via a super attack meter before they can be performed)if you want to win.Also,I like how each mobile suit pilot has it's own fighting style that's suited to the abilities of the mobile suit,unlike the early Mortal Kombat games that were also released on the SNES in which each opponent fought in exactly the same way(except the bosses).

The gameplay modes that are available are story(which is like arcade mode),VS(which is specifically suited for playing another human opponent)and trial mode,which is a survival mode in which you face a never-ending number of opponents(one on one style of course)and after you defeat an opponent you will receive health(the amount depends on the amount of time it took you to defeat the previous opponent)and as the number of opponents you defeat gets higher,the opponents get harder and the main aim is to reach 99 victories and even if you do the opponents still keep coming but the score stays at 99.

I think the final boss in story mode is too cheap,I don't mind a challenging final boss but there's a difference between challenging and plain cheap.

As for the game's presentation,I like how the title screen shows a nicely-drawn image of Relena Peacecraft(an important character from the story)and you'll hear the music from the song '' rhythm of emotion''which is one of the Gundam Wing theme songs and I love it and it brings a feeling of happy times a child during the 1990's.

When you're selecting a mobile suit,you'll see both the mobile suit and it's pilot(character)and the artwork for the characters is nice.I like how the boxes with each mobile suit on the character select screen showstats of each mobile suits such as speed,agility,armor etc.

I like how during the gameplay you'll see how the mobile suits are as big as tall buildings near them and the mobile suits make parks and trees and certain buildings look tiny(which gives a great sense of scale)and the environments consist of futuristic cities,desert with a beautiful sunset,battlefields and wastelands,on snow/ice and in space.



The music at the character select screen and at the character VS screen and during the battles is great because it has a great 1990's synthesized Japanese anime style to it that feels very retro and that suits Sci Fi anime of the 1990's.When you defeat an opponent,you'll hear a certain synthesized sound affect and I think it sounds very cool.When the mobile suits walk you'll hear their loud footsteps.

I can safely say this is one of the best Gundam games I've ever played and even though people may say that's not saying much,I can also say it's one of the best 16-Bit fighting games to ever be released and it's a shame this game was never officially released outside of Japan.

The score I give for this game is a 9 out of 10.I score games according to how good they were during the era they were released in.

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