Hey, so where the hell have I been? Be honest, did anybody really miss me? Hmmm….no? Okay, well regardless I’ll be back to writing Tytania articles in a jiffy, but wow, you wouldn’t imagine the things XBox Live can do to a person. Right now I’ve sworn off all other activities until I can get my Gamerscore up above a certain threshold, but I’ve also been spending my time finishing up Roots. One other curious thing I subjected myself too over the last couple of weeks was the Gundam 00 Gundam Meisters PS2 game…..because I just had too know, does it suck? Unfortunately and yet not too surprisingly the answer is yes. A short “review” if you will as a prelim to getting back into the groove of blogging….
So what do you need to know in order to play this game and what type of experience might you expect from it you might ask? Well can you press a direction on the analog stick? Yes? Well you’re good to go then. Yep, that’s pretty much it, the game can be summed up thusly, get your briefing, go kill a wave of enemies to build up your 00 Mode, press Square to trigger 00 mode and then press the indicated direction on the analog stick until you screw up. If you get over a certain combo you get to watch an action movie where you input a certain command (Mash specified key, press certain button order) in order to use your Gundam’s special attack. Maybe you’ll fight a boss once in a while, but that’s pretty much the game. The only variety is in which Meister you choose to play as, but even then it’s a stretch to say the game has anything unique. You get 10 stages per Meister that take you through each of their individual and combined missions and you get to take one other Meister along as a support unit, but they don’t do anything besides help you in the combination attack movie. The game ends at the final battle with Alejandro’s EF forces and then you play as another Meister until it’s over. That’s it besides the versus mode which for some reason features the 00 Gundam and Mr. Bushido in his custom Ahead along with Soma in her Taozi, Sergei in his Tieren Flight Type, Nena Trinity in the Throne Zwei, Patrick in his Custom Enact, Graham in his GN Flag, Howard in a Union Flag, Ali in his custom Enact and Alejandro in his Alvaaron. And that’s game.
Are you watching this video? You’ve pretty much seen everything the game has to offer now
Pretty tepid even by the usual standards of Gundam games, and not to mention unpolished. The way the game works in requiring you to take down a certain number of enemies makes it so that there will still be enemies on the screen coming at you as the game is claiming that the phase is complete and more often then not you’ll get to see a shot sail right through the last enemy you destroy as if it isn’t there. Pretty sloppy. In fact the only thing I can say was at all interesting visual wise was when the sun set during the desert operation level (and by setting I mean like blink and suddenly it’s dawn), and even then it’s because my expectations for this games engine were already so low by that point. So if Climax U.C was a disappointment then Gundam 00: Gundam Meisters isn’t even worth playing in the end. I wouldn’t even recommend it to a fan of the TV series. I’d probably give it a 3/10 at best for the one mildy interesting game only mission that gives some insight into how Tieria came to respect Setsuna a little more, but I think I’m being generous even then. Game makes a pretty good coaster though. :p
In truth good Gundam games do exist however. PMX-004 Titania eh? Titania…..Tytania……Yeah I better get on that…
Honestly if you want to play a decent Gundam game then go with SD Gundam G Generation Spirits. The G-Generation series is pretty much the only consistently solid series of Gundam games at this point. Just don’t go expecting any AU out of it as Spirits is solidly U.C only. All of U.C to including the canon side stories mind you, but still strictly U.C. If you want AU you’ll have to go with SD Gundam G Generation F on the Playstation, which has everything up to and including Turn A. Anyway, now onto one other thing for the night, and that is sharing my take on Gundam 00 Episode 08 from Animesuki with everyone:
I remember near the end of the first season some of the Celestial Being characters started asking whether they were meant to be sacrificed for Aeolia Schenberg’s plan, and if Ribbons is to be believed then indeed they were and he and his innovators were supposed to take over with the second step. However as we saw Aeolia Schenberg gave the Meister’s the means through which to survive the final stages of the first phase and thus it seems they still have a part to play. What part that is remains to be seen and so far it just seems like Celestial Being is resisting A-LAWS for the sake of doing it. As Sumeragi pointed out the Federation’s citizenry enjoys a higher standard of living and a greater degree of security (via the A-LAWS) compared to the rest of the world, so is that something that CB really has a right to disrupt. Is their part in this world over or will they be doing something important in the episodes to come, I think that rests on Ribbons methods.
As Ribbons says, the first stage was to unite humanity in theory, the second was to unite them in spirit and the third stage is to take them out into space, all under the guidance of the innovators, and it seems that the second stage is what he’s been working at so far this season. However, it seems to me that near the end of the last season, along with Alejandro he ended up accelerating the plan and that all of this change is coming about far faster then Aeolia would have wanted it too. The reorganization of the Middle East looks to be part of that accelaration process as well. In a way I’m starting to suspect that Celestial Being is fighting for the plan’s termination at this 1st phase step so that humanity as a united nation can have the chance to enjoy the current world and wait for the right moment in order to progress to the next stage, whereas Ribbons is more or less ready for the third phase right now, whether the world is or not. At least that’s my theory.
Speaking of change, we get to see even more how some of the characters have changed over the last 4 years this season. Obviously Tieria would have probably joined up with his own kind had they shown up during the middle of the first season and before Lockon managed to get through to him, but now Tieria sits squarely with his meister comrades. Healing and Ribbons personalities are almost identical to Tieria’s from the early first season in their arrogance and belief in their inherent right to act as judges, and Ribbons is more or less right, Tieria HAS become more human and probably can’t fit in with them anymore. Regene Regetta seems to have his own plans though, and I’m starting to suspect that he could be a late season traitor villain. In either case I think people who are complaining about A-LAWS not being an evil enough antagonist are probably looking in the wrong place for villainy.
Take Louise for example who comes across more like a lost soul who has let her desire for revenge take her right into the hands of her greatest enemy. That’s right, I suspect that it was Ribbons who sent Team Trinity on their mission over Spain in the hope that Neena would do what she did and give him an avenue to seizing Louise’s fortune to help fund A-LAWS. Or maybe I give him a little to much credit. In any case I think it’s hard to deny that Louise has changed more than anyone who was in season 1 and it comes across again in her dialogue with Setsuna. No more angry camera up the mouth fade-outs for her, she’s capable of having a normal discussion with Setsuna and doesn’t seem to have any of that childish disliking of him at all from the first season.
And Setsuna has shown that he can handle an undercover mission at this point. Earlier Setsuna would have said something like “Yes, Saji is with us now and he’s your enemy”, but instead he says something more along the lines of, “I bumped into Saji who was working in the colonies and he told me he misses you very much”, which is a half truth, but more than appropriate. And we also see that Louise misses Saji too and that along with her reattached arm she still has the ring he gave her. She’s holding onto her humanity bit by bit despite the headaches and all of the lies she’s being forced to endure, but she’s hanging in there. I think that makes her a much stronger character then the first season would have lead us to believe of her. As for Setsuna, he played his part well too, but unfortunately had to pay for his earlier antics in the desert once Billy made him. You can’ always escape your past is what I think this scene served to highlight perfectly.
About the only part of this episode I wasn’t a huge fan of was the Marie x Feldt subplot. I didn’t see any real point to it other then her letting Marie know that not everybody welcomes her on the ship with open arms, and then suddenly she was okay with her. I suppose it’s Feldt slowly moving beyond Lockon’s death (speaking of which, it was cool to see him show up as a memory in order to give Tieria some encouragement), but combined with the overly cutesy Milena and everyone being really happy and nice to each other after a short time of ultra light verbal sparrage it all just felt more like a missing Clannad Side Story plotine that somehow ended up in Gundam.
Overall another solid episode with some good direction that ties back into the first season happenings nicely. I think this series has tied back more to the happenings of it’s first season in 8 episodes then Gundam Seed Destiny managed to do in the entire series for Gundam Seed. Next week looks like it’s a fight with Ali. Can two Meister’s beat the seemingly unstoppable death machine of the series? Anyway, gave this one an 8.5/10.
Random Trivia: This episode features Regene Regetta (voiced by Romi Paku) fairly heavily and it’s partially his explanation about the Innovators that leads Tieria to dress up as a woman in order to infiltrate the A-LAWS party to learn more about himself from Ribbons as Regene looks on in mild amusement. The scenario takes a cue from Turn A Gundam where hero character Loran Cehack dresses up for a woman in order to get close to the leaders of the opposing moon race character. Loran Cehack was of course voiced by…..Romi Paku. Possible seiyuu in joke? You decide.