Now if you’ve been paying attention to this particular title, you’d know that it has already seen its release in Japan. But, as is the norm for Japanese games, we here in the West have had to wait for Freedom Wars to line our shelves. As such, it was a nice little treat to be able to get my hands on the game and give it a try.
First things first, the game looks amazing. It really makes you wonder how the PS Vita has continued to be one of the most under-appreciated consoles of this generation. The character models are clean, the enemies are detailed and the environments are expansive. You can also customize what your character, and their partner, look like, with the promise of more options as you continue through the game. It’s a cool little aesthetic touch that showed, even through the demo, that there will be a whole lot to do within the game.
In the demo mission I jumped into, I was pitted against a robot that had decided, or was ordered, to confine two civilians within its chest. Objective: Destroy robot, rescue civilians, go back to base/gaol. Simple…save for the two missile pods strapped to the machines shoulders and its penchant for powerslams. Lacking the size to combat such a foe head on, combats allows you to focus your strikes on particular areas. Say for example that those missile pods are really getting on your nerves (which they will), all you have to do is latch onto them using your Thorn grappling whip and swing your sword like nobody’s business. Sure you’ll get thrown around a bit, but its worth it when those armaments finally explode. Doing so also makes it much safer to latch onto the opponents legs and begin your struggle to drag it to the ground. Though it will eventually get up again should you do so, it does leave it wide open for some serious damage. Also its really fun.
This particular mode that I played also required me to rescue the civilians held captive within the robot. Of course this also had to be completed within a time limit and, owing to how long it took me to defeat the robot, caused me to fail the mission. My bad, Although I will also throw some blame onto the NPC who ran away from me when I was trying to save him. Idiot made me lose by like 5 seconds. Conversely, my NPC buddy was a tremendous help throughout the battle, reviving me countless times and helping whittle away at the opposing machine. Though why he got a machine gun and I was stuck with a sword was never explained…nor were the controls. Look, I understand that it was a demo and everything, but it started with the main character in his cell, the apparent hub for the game. Then there’s a whole bunch of menu options and categories, all of which will most assuredly make sense when explained to you. Especially the part where you get an extended sentence for getting chatty with your Accessory/NPC. Not that I did that, Frank did. Just putting it out there, Frank Inglese talks so much that an all powerful judicial system saw fit to incarcerate him for an extra 60 years. Fair call if you ask me.
So yeah, Freedom Wars is awesome. I only got around to fighting one big enemy, probably not even close in strength to an actual boss, and I’m already amped to keep playing. I want to bring down bigger foes, get better weapons…change my haircut. I also can’t wait to team up with other Vita users and bring all out tactical chaos to the battlefield. Plus, if it can reduce my fantastical prison sentence, that’d be cool to.
While you’re in the mood, why not check out the rest of our articles for EB Expo 2014?