Nov 13, 2013
Mechs vs Aliens tells the story of yet another invasion of earth by aliens. Rather than tanks or Hollywood actors, humanity has turned to huge robots for Earthâ€™s defense. There is plenty of plot exposition between missions with various characters blabbing at each other, but the gameâ€™s dialogue feels rather stilled and poorly translated.
Regardless, a good story isn’t really needed when the rest of the game is about smashing freaky aliens into paste with an array of explosive weaponry right? Well there are plenty of explosions and attacks on offer in the gameâ€™s turn based combat. Each turn the player and their enemy can pick from a variety of different attacks such as ranged attacks or melee strikes, a glorified version of rock paper scissors. Defensive moves are also on offer.
The problem is that it is nearly impossible to predict what attack or defense an enemy will use, making combat largely luck-based. Whenever an attack smashes an opponent with a critical hit, or is blocked completely is down to chance and little else. Combat is fun to watch at least, there are lots of cool weapon animations and some imaginative attacks, like how the Russian mech uses mini tornadoes to throw enemies around.
Despite the gameâ€™s impressive selection of mechs, each of which is themed after a country, all of the mechs except one are locked behind a paywall, some mechs will take literally months of gameplay to access. Only the Russian mech is unlocked from the beginning of the game.
Saving up for these mechanical death machines is further hampered by having to pay to enter most single player missions. While a few early missions in the game cost nothing to play, later ones cost in game currency. Mission 4, the first one that asks for money costs 3000 ores. The average money gained from a battle in Mission 3 is 80-100. And prices only shoot up from there. Itâ€™s nearly impossible to save up for the locked mechs when money must be used to progress and this necessitates loads of mindless grinding of previous missions to scourge up the cash.
Mechs vs Aliens also includes upgrade modules that will boost a mechâ€™s stats. These are quite expensive in terms of in game currency. It remains to be seen if use of upgrade modules will unbalance multiplayer or the single player campaign.
Mechs vs Aliens looks and sounds great, full 3D graphics abound and there are plenty of missiles, explosions and lasers to fill the screen. While watching the same combat animations can get dull, it is a pretty game. The sound suits the game well, featuring lots of loud booms and zaps as the behemoths slap each other around.
Mechs vs Aliens is a game that is big on graphics and spectacle, but short on actual gameplay. The continual grabs for cash aren’t great either. It is much more fun than other freemium laden games, like Castleville, but it could have been a lot better.