Gundam Evolution Interview: Bandai Namco Discusses the Balance between Fun and Loyalty

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Fans of FPS and Gundam were surprised when Gundam Evolution made its first test run on Steam in April. In this title, the iconic list of Gundam mechs has teamed up with the free shooter hero model, and it aims to penetrate the esports sphere in a way Gundam has never done. The Gundam Evolution list, assembled from a diverse set of machines, is ready to storm the field with the help of rapidly developing and versatile kits. Comparisons with other hero shooters are inevitable, but everyone will be able to test it for themselves and see how they actually cope with competitors.

It took a lot of careful planning to make Gundam Evolution a memorable game. Game Rant spoke with Gundam Evolution executive Producer Kazuya Maruyama and Gameplay Director Ryota Hogaki about the game’s features and design philosophy. In this article, they will be collectively referred to as Bandai Namco. The interview has been edited for clarity and brevity.

Q: Several other Gundam games have used a competitive team format. What distinguishes Gundam Evolution from them?

A: The features of GUNDAM EVOLUTION are designed as below. This game offers a unique experience of an ace pilot from the anime series GUNDAM.

Fast and exciting team battle. A new level of fun as players can defeat the enemy by taking full advantage of the unique traits, abilities and upgrades of various mobile suits. your teammates depending on different combat situations Unique boost system that offers intuitive controls

Q: What considerations were taken into account when implementing Boost System?

A: We have developed an accelerated dash for long—distance travel, and an accelerated step is a distinctive feature that allows you to quickly get closer to the enemy during combat. They are also associated with the unique traits of each unit. The effective use of the acceleration system to control the mobile armor will be the key point and will bring the pleasure of destroying the enemy. The system is also carefully configured on a regular basis so that all players have the ability to move quickly during combat, which simplifies the attack and makes it more fun.

Q: It’s clear that a lot of work went into getting the visual effects right. How did your team manage to balance realistic graphics, Gunpla-style customization and anime-inspired design?

A: Over the years, many Gundam games have been developed and released, as well as many plastic models such as Gunpla. For more than 40 years since Gundam first appeared in the world, their appearance has been polished by talented designers in pursuit of a realistic and stylish appearance. I think this is one of the strengths of Gundam’s creations compared to other works. Our designers also sought to create a new, not old-fashioned design, as well as reflecting the original design that fans like.

We also strive to develop a game that does not contradict the competitive nature of the game genre, even in the smallest details. One of our main goals is to give people outside Japan an opportunity to get acquainted with Gundam, and Japanese people to get used to competitive shooters and enjoy them in our game.

Q: What was the process of choosing different game units? Some unexpected choices like Methuss and Guntank are already present.

A: The units selected for this game are selected from over 1000 different units that appeared in the anime series Gundam. As some of you can probably tell from the lineup, we don’t choose devices based solely on popularity. At first we developed combat concepts, wondering what weapons to use and how we want our players to participate in combat. Some of the iconic elements of the original anime series were in some cases used as G-maneuvers (ults). Having compiled such a list, we went through extensive trial and error processes with designers and engineers to see what could be implemented in practice.

Q: Although some of the cars on the list canonically have different weapons, they are focused on certain styles of play in Gundam Evolution. For example, Sazabi’s melee character refers to the aggressiveness of Aznable’s Charms during his piloting. How did the initial abilities of the mechs and pilots affect their design?

A: Since this is a team shooter, it really matters what role you play in the game, but instead of setting roles, we wanted players to use their favorite units whenever they want. For this reason, we have developed all units capable of dealing good damage to level the playing field.

With this in mind, we want our players to make the most of the capabilities of each unit. Sazabi, for example, has a shield, which makes him strong in one-on-one situations when shooting at enemy units and defending himself.