411 Games Top 5 3.15.14: Top 5 Mech Games
Posted by Sean Garmer on 03.15.2014
From Mechwarrior 4 and Armored Core V to Zone of the Enders, Front Mission 4 and more, the 411 staff counts down their top 5 mech games of all-time!
Hello everyone, I hope it has been a good week for all the readers out there. I hope you all like mechs.
In honor of Titanfall coming out this week, here are the Top 5 Games featuring Mech's. It doesn't necessarily mean it has to be a "mech game" it just has to feature mech's prominently in some fashion.
Francisco Ramirez (411mania.com Contributor)
5. Robot Alchemic Drive - Screw Steel Battalion! R.A.D. is where it's at when it comes to being immersed in a mechs perspective. Perhaps not seeing Steel Battalions control setup. Still, R.A.D featured various mechs called Meganites battling giant aliens named Volgara. Various upgrades and mechs were available, and the one of a kind control scheme made this game standout and become one of those games that's just near and dear to me.
4. Xenogears - Gears count as mechs right?? Well it does to me! Xenogears is the classic Squaresoft JRPG which featured a sweet turn based battle system and all of your party members had his or her own Gear which they would pilot. A deep story which varied in subject ranging on everything from philosophy to religion. Mix all these ingredients and you had yourself a JRPG that was a must play on the Playstation.
3. Front Mission 4 - Another Square game! The turn based strategy game was basically Final Fantasy Tactics with mechs. Mech customization was a huge part, as should be in any mech game. The one thing that springs to mind when thinking of Front Mission 4, the difficulty! My god was this game difficult!
2. Zone of the Enders 2: 2nd Runner - Hideo Kojima's version of a mech game. One might even be able to count Metal Gear, seeing as the Gears were mechs themselves. Anyways, a vast improvement over the original Zone of the Enders, the game featured the return of the mech Jehuty, and way more action then the original. Not worrying about protecting civilians was more than enough to warrant a purchase.
1. Armored Core V - When it comes to pure mech gameplay nothing beats the long running Armored Core series. Storywise there is nothing special. Gameplay, it's not for everyone. Customization though, whoa! Armored Core would best be compared to a Forza or Gran Turismo, damn near anything you can think of is customizable. Each year more and more is added, and the series keeps getting better and better.
John Cash (Reader Voice, Occasional Contributor to Four Player Co-op)
Honorable Mention: Mass Effect 3 (PC/PS3/360/Wii U) - Piloting the atlas mech on Grissom Academy was an awesome break from the usual gameplay, I wish it had been in more missions.
5. Front Mission Evolved (PC/PS3/360): A very competent 3rd person shooter, with pretty good customization. This is the only FM game I've played, so I can't really compare it to anything but other mech series, and it was enjoyable enough for me. I am far more likely to enjoy a mech game over a mech anime, because in the games you can skip over the technical gibberish in the cutscenes to get to the action, and FME provides just the kind of action I like.
4. Steel Battalion (XBOX): Dat controller set-up... I mean, really, all credit and respect to the people who made Steel Battalion. It's kind of weird to play a simulator for something that doesn't actually exist, because you don't really have any kind of experience to compare it to. I think I would have liked Steel Battalion better if had actually been two games; the game we got, and a separate game/disc that you play before the main game that is literally just 40 hours of teaching you how to use the controller.
3. Battle Assault 3 featuring Gundam Seed (PS2): Calm down Gundam fans, I'm pretty sure the only Gundam I've ever watched is whatever was on Toonami in the early days of this century, so if Seed was a "bad season", I'm sorry. This was a great fighting game, and the designs of the Gundams bring a breath of fresh (to me) air amongst all the "tanks with legs" you tend to see in most mech games. I've been wanting to play the Gundam/Dynasty Warriors game but haven't gotten around to it, so for now, this is definitely the best Gundam game I've ever played.
2. Lost Planet: Extreme Condition (PC/360/PS3): The Vital Suit is quite iconic to me, so you can imagine that when I saw it in my #1 from last week's Top 5 (Tatsunoko vs Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars), I was beyond excited. This was one of the first games for me where it felt like a mech game could somehow be more than just about walking tanks and still be a mech game. I loved the idea of weather being more of an obstacle than "it's slightly harder to see things". I wasn't as thrilled with the second or third games, but I will highly recommend at least checking out this first entry in the series.
1. Hawken (PC): I'm not sure if Titanfall started production before Hawken, but if it didn't, they are totally stealing Hawken's thunder. If you are super excited for and/or have the most fun with the FPS Mech fighting in Titanfall, you need to play Hawken. There aren't melee attacks or jedi bullet stopping, but everything else is pretty similar and it's free to play. I'm not typically a fan of FPS/Mech, but being free to play on top of having fairly decent servers combined to create a very fun and addictive experience. It's on Steam Early Access, so go play it!
Daniel Anderson (Games Zone Reviewer, Games Fact or Fiction Organizer, Regular Contributor to "Cooperative Multiplayer" The Official 411 Games Podcast)
5. Front Mission 4 - This game just beats out Mech Assault on my list due to being turn based. I love fast paced mech games (as the rest of this list will show), but the Front Mission series gave you something different. You had to think about what you were going to do with your mechs. Plan ahead instead of just thinking you will go in and blow up everything that stands against you. Fun change of pace from the other games on the list.
4. Steel Battalion - I do not mind saying that I was one of those people who bought the massive controller. I was young, lived at home, and had no bills to pay while working 30 hours a week and going to school so I could afford it. The game was fun for a mech game with a bit of realism in it by making you eject from your mech or you lose your save file. I enjoyed the game, but I feel that the controller overshadowed what could have been an Armored Core type series.
3. Mechcommander 2 - Like Front Mission, this game gave you a different view of mechs. Instead of feeling like you were in a deadly and invincible machine, you were looking down on the battlefields and telling your death machines where to go and what to attack. You could upgrade your mechs and your pilots would upgrade as well. Fun game, but didn't beat out the other two on my list.
2. Mechwarrior 3 - The difference between the final two games on my list is very small. It mainly comes down to playstyle and the fun I had with the game. Mechwarrior 3 was an amazing game. I loved the online play more than the story, and played it until Mechwarrior 4 was released. I loved building new mechs and testing them in battle. Only thing that has this game below the next one was there was too much flexibility in creating a mech. There were no hardpoints that had to have a certain type of weapon on it. If you wanted an all laser 90 ton mech you could have it. Same with an all ballistic or all missile mech. It felt like it became a game of whoever had the biggest mech would win.
1. Mechwarrior 4 - This game took out my big issue with Mechwarrior 3 and fixed it. I love this game and wish that we had gotten a true sequel to it instead of Mechwarrior Online. I still remember when this game first released, me and my friend in Texas who I was visiting bought the game and played online. We played with mech designs and generally pissed people off that we beat (say what you will about cheapness, but running piloting a Catapult at someone loaded with High Explosives and seeing how many people you could destroy in one explosion was fun). The expansions that came out for the game were good as well added more to the game. This game remains the best mech game I have played.
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If you don't listen to the Official 411 Games Podcast "Cooperative Multiplayer" you should! Right now, Stephen Randle is taking a little break from the podcast due to recently having a baby boy. Therefore, between Robert Cooper, Daniel Anderson, and I, we discuss the games we've played this week, the gaming news of the week, and just having a lot of fun too. Here is this week's episode…
Games Coming Out the Week of 03/16/14
Infamous Second Son (PS4)
Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes (Xbox One, PS4, PS3, Xbox 360)