Front Mission Evolved
Mechs invade Xbox 360 and PS3, courtesy of Square-Ennix: but are they killer machines, or bumbling toasters?
- Solid multiplayer experience, mechs will always be cool
- Single player is boring, doesn’t really feel like you’re controlling a mech
As a standard shooter, Front Mission Evolved misses a huge opportunity, but the core mechanics are there, and if you get into the multiplayer, you’re going to have a good time.
Price$ 99.95 (AUD)
Robots and mechs are cool. It’s a fact of life that saw the rise of Transformers, and is so ingrained in our culture that even a Michael Bay/Megan Fox tag team failed to kill our fascination with big metal things ripping into each other.
It’s this attraction that Square-Ennix is banking on with Front Mission Evolved. In most ways, it’s a standard third-person shooter, but rather than control a mere human, you’re controlling a human sitting in a “Wanzer” (temptation to insert a ‘g’ rising) mech. In the end, though, it’s quite a superficial coat of digital paint.
Name aside, Wanzers don’t seem to have any real tricks that virtual humans aren’t capable of, unfortunately. They can glide across the ground in short bursts, but other than that, Front Mission is just a shiny, standard shooter. You select your weapon loadout before heading into a level (taking into account that too many weapons and armour will slow you down to a snail’s pace), and then blow stuff up.
If we’re being completely honest, developers Double Helix Games missed a real opportunity here. Despite the Wanzers towering over the surrounding buildings, tanks and people, at no stage do you feel particularly powerful. The Wanzer can take a fair bit of punishment, but then again, so can the heroes of most shooters.
The single-player mode in Evolved isn’t very evolved at all. It’s short and high energy, but ultimately quite shallow and has limited replay value. That said, it was clearly designed as a training ground for the multiplayer mode, which comprises the main meat of the game.
In concept the multiplayer mode is awesome – the levels are well designed, and once you get hooked, you’re going to plug in a lot of hours to level your profile all the way to level 70. There’s a lot of customisation you can do with your characters, and in team mode there’s a great deal of team strategy that can be built around the unique roles of those builds.
But here’s the rub – the game’s been out a little while now, and the online user base has settled down into its comfort zone. The people still playing tend to be really good, and have access to all kinds of toys and tricks a newbie is not going to understand.
In multiplayer, a great level of skill and control over the Wanzer is needed to succeed, and when the action heats up (which is often, given that the maps are quite small) the game becomes somewhat discouraging.
While I freely admit that I’m new to this kind of game and didn’t expect to excel online initially, it was quite a few matches before my kill/death ratio was even remotely reasonable. That’s discouraging for newbies, and will put many off what is essentially the main component of the game.
Once you become more confident in your abilities, however, Front Mission Evolved is a classy shooter. For it to properly compete with other online shooters though, like Call of Duty: Black Ops, it probably needed to be a little more accessible in the early stages.
Join the PC World newsletter!
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Huawei Mate 9
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Google Daydream VR headset
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Lexar® Portable SSD
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Acer Swift 7
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Surface Pro 4
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- 2 ZTE Axon 7 review: Is ZTE dumping old stock on Australia?
- 3 Oppo R9s smartphone full review
- 4 Huawei Nova Plus smartphone review
- 5 Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: Phones just got smarter
Latest News Articles
- You can download Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes for iOS and Android today
- Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes looks sharp, but will it survive the freemium transition?
- Nintendo's bringing Super Mario Run to Android in March, but Fire Emblem's coming first
- The Switch is a mix of Nintendo's past consoles
- Dead Rising 4 impressions: 'Tis the season to BBQ zombies with your flaming sword
PCW Evaluation Team
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- Time to ditch Foxtel and the iQ3: How to replace Foxtel packages with cheaper alternatives
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- TPProject Support OfficerQLD
- FTSenior Business AnalystNSW
- FTWintel EngineerSA
- CCSenior Mobile Application DeveloperNSW
- TPMobile DeveloperWA
- CCUnix AdministratorNSW
- TPSOE AdministratorQLD
- CCMDM Consultant/DesignerVIC
- CCIT Operations Centre EngineerQLD
- TPDatabase Integration SpecialistVIC
- FTSenior Java Developers (Several positions available)QLD
- TPGIS Developer - 6 month ContractQLD
- FTChange Manager - Large Transition ProjectNSW
- CCTest Capability LeadNSW
- CCProject Support SpecialistVIC
- TPBusiness AnalystACT
- CCMidrange ProvisioningNSW
- FTSnr SOC Security Coordinator - Perm - North Ryde areaNSW
- TPTest AnalystQLD
- CCProcess Improvement Specialist - Six Sigma Black BeltVIC
- FTSenior Business Project ManagerNSW
- CCSQL Database Administrator (DBA)NSW
- FTProject Manager (Software product development)VIC
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- FTService Desk Analyst / Security EngineerQLD