Google+

Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love review

Decent
AT A GLANCE
  • It mashes things up to weird effect
  • Interesting in an 'only in Japan' fashion
  • Neat cutscenes
  • Too much pressing of A to get through chat
  • Battles drag on
  • Nothing that won't be familiar to JRPG fans

Well, this is nuts. It’s part interactive manga, part dating sim and part hardcore turn-based scrapper with mechs. It’s set in an alternative ’20s New York where the city’s guardian angels are called the New York Combat Revue, a group of female mech pilots who perform in nightly Broadway musicals at the Little Lips Theatre. That’s their cover story, see, and the theatre doubles as a secret base. The Sakura Wars franchise is huge in Japan and – understandably, given both its premise and the nature of the game – this is the first time one of the games has come out over here. And to be honest, we could have managed without it.

Without getting too bogged down in the story, you play as a young lad who’s transferred from the Imperial Assault Force in Tokyo to the aforementioned New York outfit. Your initial struggle is getting accepted by the girls, which is done by pressing the A button an inordinate amount of times to scroll through the dialogue, and occasionally choosing an appropriate response to a question from one of three answers. Or you can choose to deliberately annoy them with a jerkish answer, but don’t expect to get in their good books.

Part of gaining acceptance involves helping out around the theatre, which means completing a handful of cheap button-prompt minigames. But mainly it’s the chat. A good hour or so into the game, you finally get to have a fight. Hurrah? Well, sort of. Unlike the continual pressing of A, the scraps are quite complex and long-winded, taking a cue from many a turn-based strategy RPG.

The player controls all mechs in the party, maneuvering them around the battlefield and deciding between standard, special and joint attacks, and healing and defending. See the blue bar on the bottom of the screenshots? That bar depletes as you move or perform the issued commands. When it’s used up, the turn ends. The fights go on for ages thanks to the extended cinematics that kick in for every attack. Unfortunately, there’s just far too much puff and nonsense for our tastes.

Mar 23, 2010

More Info

Release date: Mar 30 2010 - PS2, Wii (US)
Available Platforms: PS2, Wii
Genre: Role Playing
Published by: NIS America
Developed by: IDEA FACTORY
ESRB Rating:
Teen: Fantasy Violence, Language, Sexual Themes

We Recommend By ZergNet

5 comments

  • Kytl - April 2, 2010 2:46 a.m.

    i'll get it, since i like SRPGs. and the text part shouldn't bother me, Fire Emblem never bothered me in that regard
  • Evilsafetyboy - April 1, 2010 8:47 p.m.

    This is too weird NOT to play. I'm in!
  • Gahmah - March 24, 2010 4:11 a.m.

    one of the first images on the sidebar is the black woman upside down and shouting suprise or concern, funny looking.
  • ssj4raditz - March 24, 2010 3:05 a.m.

    One for lovers of '20s New York, Mechs, and Broadway musicals Well, two outta three ain't bad! Hmm...
  • ventanger - March 24, 2010 2:14 a.m.

    In a related story, Japanese man marries broadway musical mech pilot character, the best man is the A button.

Showing 1-5 of 5 comments

Join the Discussion
Add a comment (HTML tags are not allowed.)
Characters remaining: 5000

OR…

Connect with Facebook

Log in using Facebook to share comments, games, status update and other activity easily with your Facebook feed.