Saturday, 10 August 2019

Gamera - Daikaijuu Kuuchuu Kessen (Game Boy)

Videogames based on Kaiju and Tokusatsu properties can be a mixed bag, though I'm probably not alone in thinking that the 2014 Godzilla game on PS4 is probably the best. And while its true that a lot of these games have got a worse rap than they deserve due to critics not really understanding their appeal (the common opinion of the Dreamcast's Godzilla Generations, for example), I might have found the worst of them all, by some considerable margin.

How Gamera - Daikaijuu Kuuchuu Kessen works is kind of like a turn-based fighting game, with no menus. Every turn, you're asked to input a command, then both monsters' maneuvers play out, and that carries on until one of them runs out of health. The closest thing to which I can compare it is probably the weird FMV fighting game Battle Heat on PC-FX. Except it's on the Game Boy, so you don't even have the visual spectacle of lavish full-screen animation to liven things up. Though if you're playing on a Super Game Boy, there are some nice borders to look at, I guess.

There are really two problems with this game, and they're both massive ones. The first is the inconsistency: it seems like pressing the same button combination on different turns doesn't always result in the same action, and furthermore, performing the same action won't always produce the same results, even if the enemy does the same thing, too. So the game boils down to you watching little animations of Gamera and his current opponent doing seemingly random things at each other until one of them suddenly gets hurt. This repeats over and over until one of them runs out of health, and to make things worse, you have to win two rounds against each monster.

And that leads nicely into the second problem: this game is unbelievably slow! Honestly, it took me a few attempts to get past the first fight, simply because it was sapping me of the will to live, and when I did finally get past it, it took over twenty minutes! And that's without losing any rounds! Then you get to the next stage and are faced with the prospect of this carrying on. Apparently this game has a total of five stages, but I can't imagine anyone having the patience to play through them all. I definitely don't recommend trying to.

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